How to Create a Referral Program on Hubspot?

Referral marketing is one of the most effective ways to convert customers' love for your brand into a sales funnel that that can help you drive more sales and revenue.

Abdul Wahab

Abdul Wahab

· 12 min read
How to Create a Referral Program on Hubspot?

It's hard to bet your company's stakes on an unorthodox marketing strategy execpt one that capitalizes on people's goodwill towards your brand. As an entrepreneur, if you're doing enough for your customers that compels them to spread word to others, you will have a constant supply of new leads and preferrably ones, who are bound to stay.

Referral marketing is one of the most effective ways to convert customers' love for your brand into a sales funnel that that can help you drive more sales and revenue.

More importantly, it doesn't require an entirely new eco-system to align with a brand. Instead, you can integrate the referral program with your existing HubSpot CRM as long as it's powered by the right referral software.

Once it connects to your HubSpot CRM, you can reward your HubSpot contacts for referring their friends and family to your business, and create a powerful community that drives more sales and revenue for your company. Learn all you need to know about building a refer-a-friend campaign with HubSpot.

An Introduction to Hubspot

For companies looking to build and foster audiences through guided content and information, Hubspot is just the tool to assist with inbound marketing. Hubspot is a customer relationship management (CRM) platform that aligns sales and marketing teams to attract, engage, and delight new customers and foster long-lasting ties.

As a customer service platform, Hubspot not only helps companies manage their customer relationships but capitalized right with referral programs, it can even leverage existing clientele to turn in newer leads.

The CRM allows businesses to manage their contacts, track interactions, and gain insights into their customers' behaviors. The information serves as the foundation for identifying and tracking potential advocates to participate in your referral marketing program.

When drafted and set up, Hubspot’s promotion features will help advertise the referral campaign. Whether through email marketing, social media engagement, or brand ads, it automates marketing workflows so your content reaches the desired audience, at the right time.

Why Integrate a Referral Program with Hubspot?

Scaling companies require smart platforms to establish real-time connectivity and streamline operations between different departments. Hubspot introduces smart CRM forum that combines marketing, sales, service, CMS, and operations hub providing exceptional product management in one place.

Hubspot developed in-house — a cohesive, customizable, connected, and easy-to-adopt software solution that enables seamless correspondence at a lower cost than most counterparts.

Unified customer acquisition achieved through HubSpot.
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SaaS companies that have sorted all their CRM tools on a single platform witness a 2.7x higher return on investment (ROI) from their tech stack. Not to mention, they are 131% as likely to foster stronger consumer relationships than without a proper program. The company-wide alignment serves the basis for referral program integration.

From acquiring consumer insights during market research to advertising the referral campaign to the prospects to invoke maximum participation, creating a refer-a-friend campaign in hubspot can do much for your business. We’ve outlined possible benefits of integrating a referral program with Hubspot:

  • HubSpot's Marketing Hub offers robust tools for creating and promoting referral campaigns through targeted emails and social media ads.
  • Hubspot’s automated workflows can be triggered at different stages of the referral process, from inviting customers to participate to sending notifications and rewards upon successful referrals.
  • Email campaigns and educational content creation via Hubspot can be used to communicate the details of the referral program to existing customers.
  • HubSpot integrates seamlessly with various third-party tools and applications. Integration with e-commerce platforms, for instance, can facilitate the tracking of referral-driven sales.
  • The platform offers detailed analytics across its hubs. Businesses can analyze the performance of their referral campaigns, track the number of referrals, conversion rates, and other relevant metrics.

Set Up a Referral Program on HubSpot in 10 Steps

Preparing, launching, and managing a referral program involves various moving steps, often requiring input and collaboration from all concerned departments. But with your attentions focused on subsequent marketing channels and product improvement, automating workflows becomes inevitable to stay in the league. Here’s how you can use HubSpot to set up your referral campaign:

Create a Hubspot CRM Account

Registering with the HubSpot CRM is necessary to access the full suite of customer interaction and management tools, marketing, and sales outlook. Creating a HubSpot account involves the following process:

  1. On the HubSpot homepage, locate the "Get HubSpot Free" button and click to begin the signup process.
  2. Complete the required fields in the sign-up form.

After registering your email, you may need to provide additional information such as your first and last name, company name, website URL, and some details about your role.

  1. Once you sign in, HubSpot will guide you through an onboarding process to help you set up your account based on your needs.

It’s the step where you select your primary campaign goals goal (e.g., sales, marketing, service) and providing additional details about your business. It leads to a CRM dashboard where you can manage contacts, deals, and tasks. For a referral program, you might create custom properties to track the referral status of each contact, the number of successful referrals, or any other relevant data.

Choose a Referral Integration Platform

Even if you designed the referral campaign in-house, surely you aren’t managing it manually. Drafting referral structure, tracking and qualifiing referral leads, and releasing rewards in return is a job best left onto a specialized program. The right software automates and optimizes the referral process, improves customer acquisition, and propel growth through word-of-mouth marketing.

From the variety of referral program software on the market, choose one that which promises maximum growth, scalability, and anti-fraud mechanism. We’ve outlined a few aspects that you must pay attention to while finalzing your pick:

Centralized Management Dashboard

Referral software acts as a centralized hub for businesses to manage their campaigns. Make sure the platform you rely on features a unified dashboard where everything accessible, from tracking referrals to analyzing performance metrics.

Automated Tracking and Reward Attribution

What makes a referral software inevitable for any refer-a-friend campaign is the functionality to track and reward successful leads automatically. Pick a platform that generates unique referral links for advocates, allows for accurate tracking of referrals, and attributes conversions and sales back to the advocates who initiated the referral. Prioritize fair and transparent reward distribution to uphold credibility.

Integration with Existing (HubSpot’s) CRM

The CRM you have incorporated holds extensive data on customer interactions, preferences, and purchase history, which serves as a foothold for extending new marketing campaigns.

Integrating the referral program with the exiting, or preferably, HubSpot’s CRM will allow marketers to leverage that data into broader context of consumer engagement. It facilitates automated referral workflows which consequently improves the customer experience.

For example, when a referral converts, the integration can trigger automated pre-supposed actions such as updating customer profiles, assigning leads to sales representatives, or initiating follow-up communications.

Consistent Branding and Customization

From campaign slogans, email headers, and ad posts to the rewards you’re offering in exchange for referrals, every marketing facet must be consistent and in line with your brand identity.

Most referral software features an array of templates to embody the program but to gain an edge over your counterparts, make sure it supports personalization. In an ideal scenario, the rewards you offer should tie back to your company.

Set the program messaging, referral pages, and branding elements in a way that provides an on-brand experience for both referrer and referred customers.

Prefinery, for instance, is a tried-and-tested infrastructure for explosively massive marketing campaigns with a full suite of personalizations for pre-launch waitlists and referral programs. More importantly, it integrates seamlessly with HubSpot.

Register with a Referral Platform

Once you pinpoint a referral marketing software that supports your business dynamics, go ahead and register yourself. Referral platforms assist in two ways; from an advocate’s point of view they grant access to features that generate unique referral links, track their activity, and performance in securing rewards.

Whereas, for a buisiness enterprise, it ensures accurate referral tracking and attributing, assess loopholes and shortcomings in the program, and provide analytics to further advance the campaign.

Prefinery’s homepage
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Upon registration, businesses can communicate directly with advocates through the platform. Marketers can send trageted messaging, updates, and announcements related to the latest updates. In short, you have all the tools you require to foster successful collaboration with concerned stakeholders and ultimately drive positive outcomes for the program.

Design the Referral Program Pages

Start the front-end designing from scratch, if you have the knack, budget, and patience for it. Or take the more well-trodden route of customizing a series of referral templates.

Most startups prefer furnishing existing templates with design that best represents their brand identity. Since a landing page is your company’s primary interface, makes sure it’s visually appealing and informative at the same time. HubSpot features a free landing page builder, allowing you to buid and test webpages that look great on any device.

HubSpot’s Landing Page Builder
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When combined with a referral platform, HubSpot’s content management system can be used to create individual webpages for the campaign. The current scenario requires you to design and edit individual pages for customers who refer and the ones that channel in through a referral link.

The landing page should clearly explain the benefits of the referral program, the incentives offered, and the step-by-step process for participation. Adding compelling visuals and graphics will make your webpages to stand out more evidently, enticing every incoming lead to register and participate.

Educate Your Customers: Lay Out the Referral Offers

Despite their affiliation with your brand, some customers still require a special incentive to actively promote your business. Exceptional customer service and attractive incentives are the bedrock of a successful referral marketing program.

It’s best to highlight your offerings on the landing page to let prospects know how much you value their advocacy. If it’s your first attempt with word-of-mouth marketing, your audience may require some education — and HubSpot features just the mechanism to enable that.

Publish content for customers who are yet to discern what a referral campaign is and why they should participate. Post a clear step-by-step instructions manual on how to participate in the program, share referral links, and register leads to your name. The idea is to instruct and entice people who are not tech savvy, and the best way to accomplish that is by presenting your referral offers.

Standard referral rewards can be anything from a percentage discount on a product, cash and gift cards, freebies, and charity donations. Offer something that’s valuable to your customers and is worth their time and effort in promoting your brand. HubSpot presents advertising resources to assist businesses in promote their offerings.

HubSpot’’s advertising resources
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With HubSpot, you have the freedom to issue rewards using a management system, or fire a webhook to release new rewards. The platform also grants you access to mainstream delivery channels including email campaign and landing pages to send educational resource to a targeted audience.

Integrate the Referral Program with Hubspot

One way to enroll more leads through a referral campaign is to sync it with HubSpot CRM. The platform enables everything you need to build, launch, promote, and track your referral program.

If you’re using HubSpot, that means you have a devoted custoerms base that ready to talk about your brand in friendly circles. Once your referral campaign is set up and active, you can connect it directly to HubSpot to sync the data sharing between two platforms. Here’s how the integration unfolds:

  • Set Up HubSpot CRM for Referral Program: Create custom properties within HubSpot CRM to store referral-related information including referral status, number of successful referrals made, or other relevant data.
  • Choose a referral program platform that offers integration capabilities with HubSpot. Ensure that the platform provides the necessary APIs or integration options to establish a seamless connection.
  • Access HubSpot's developer tools: HubSpot provides comprehensive developer resources, including API documentation and guides, to facilitate the integration process.
  • Generate an API key in HubSpot: To streamline authentication mechanism for accessing HubSpot’s APIs, navigate to the platform’s settings, locate API key section, and generate a new key.
  • Configure the Referral Software Platform: Look for HubSpot integration options and enter the API key generated in the previous step. Follow the configuration steps to establish the connection.
  • Use HubSpot Forms for Referral Sign-ups: If your referral program involves a sign-up process, embed these forms on your website and integrate them with the referral platform to capture and sync data.

Prefinery’s Integration with HubSpot CRM

“Integrate Prefinery with Hubspot CRM and the rest of your existing growth stack to turbocharge your marketing efforts with referrals.”

Prefinery and HubSpot Integration page.
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HubSpot CRM referral program integration enables users to add every incoming lead in their Prefinery account directly to HubSpot as a new contact. It’s one way to turbocharge your marketing efforts through referrals. Several platforms like Zapier, Integrately, and Pabbly Connect supports on-spot integration between HubSpot and Prefinery to automate any workflow.

Sync Hubspot Contacts with Referral Program

Every HubSpot contact is a potential ambassador for your business. Presented with a good offer, in the right manner can play the part in turning them over to your side. The data sync between two platforms can be managed in two ways:

  • Shortlist a customer segment and send them a join link which they can use to register onboard, agree to the terms and conditions, and make referrals. Or
  • You can sync the HubSpot contacts list with the referral platform to auto generate referral links for everyone enrolled.

The latter serves well since the referral links also sync back into your HubSpot CRM. Ensure that the syncing process is bidirectional to maintain data consistency. Make sure to instate a mechanism in place that assigns unique indentifiers to everyone participating.

Create and Automate Workflows

HubSpot Workflows are invaluable for automating various stages of your referral program. With the right settings, you can streamline several operations related to your referral campaign including customer engagement and communication.

For example, you can set up automated workflows to send welcome emails when a customer joins the referral program, reminders to share the referral link, and notifications when a referral converts successfully.

Automation not only saves time but also ensures consistency in communication. With HubSpot Workflows, you can trigger actions based on specific criteria, such as the number of referrals made or the status of a referral. Workflow automation instate a more personalized and efficient referral experience for existing advocates and new customers.

Promoting the Referral Program

Word-of-mouth marketing cannot institute promising results unless advertised to and participated by a wider audience. Of course, existing customer are your primary asset, but you must look for participation beyond their scope. HubSpot's marketing hub caters to businesses looking to expand their clientele.

The marketing hub is feature-packed with solutions to execute targeted and personalized promotions campaigns. It largely capitalize emails to tap target customers and encourag them to refer more.

Once you segment the audience based on their engagement level and past purchases, you can use personalized tokens to insert the recipient's name and referral link into your emails.

The platform also gives you access to leverage social media as your prime advertisement tool. Thanks to the integration, you can design attractive social media posts that highlight program benefits and showcase success stories through compelling visuals.

HubSpot’s Referral Tracking and Reporting

Tracking your performance is crucial to know whether you're progressing and how close you are to achieving your goals. HubSpots tracking features create custom reports and dashboards to monitor the number of referrals, conversion rates, and their impact on your sales.

Attribution reports, on the other hand, help you understand which channels or campaigns drive the most referrals. It identifies trends, patterns, and areas for improvement and ways you can leverage them to make data-driven decisions for maximum impact.

Closing Note

As long as you make it your moto to deliver exceptional products and services and put your customers first, you'll find that they are more than happy to recommend you to others. All you need to is ask at the right time, in the right manner, and offer something equally valuable in return.

Don't let your human incapabilities to hinder your relationships with customers and prospects. Institute advanced programs like HubSpot and Prefinery to handle your referral marketing campaigns and take your business to the next level.


How Can I Create a Referral Program Using HubSpot?

To create a referral program with HubSpot, start by defining your program goals, incentives, and target audience. Then, leverage HubSpot's CRM and marketing tools to set up automated workflows, design referral forms, and establish tracking mechanisms. You can also explore third-party referral program platforms that integrate seamlessly with HubSpot for additional features.

Can I integrate a third-party referral platform with HubSpot?

Yes, you can integrate a third-party referral platform with HubSpot. Many platforms offer integration options or APIs to connect with HubSpot. In HubSpot, navigate to the App Marketplace, select your preferred referral platform, and follow the integration instructions provided.

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