Steal This #10 – ING Referral Program


Welcome to the latest edition of my new weekly blog series, Steal This. Each week I’ll highlight a marketing activity that a company is using and suggest ways that you can model it and make it work for you. Last week’s topic was – Promote Urgency.

Today’s topic is: ING Referral Program

ING Direct (now CapitalOne 360) launched onto the online banking scene and saw tremendous growth from 2005-2007 and beyond. They attributed much of that growth to their referral program, which was one of the best and most successful referral program in the industry.

It worked very simply. ING Direct customers could refer friends and collect $25 per person that signed up for an account. In addition, the person you referred got $50. It’s cash in your account, just for signing up.

So how can you steal it?

Create a referral program that actually benefits people. $75 in free cash has a lot of appeal. It benefits both people, and the potential market is very broad.

The keys to a good referral program are 1) offer something people actually want and can clearly see the value in, and 2) make it easy for people to use.

Here’s a quick presentation on creating a referral program:

Building an effective referral program from Ambassador

As always, tell me what you think of this week’s idea and suggest other marketing programs to “Steal” in the comments below.