Welcome to ReferralHero. We're the spark that ignites a fire of Referrals.
And in this case study we don't want to put out the fire. 🔥
You'll learn how Oregon Shines is achieving a 120% referral growth rate using a gift card Ambassador Referral Program and how you can do the same!
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Ambassador Program Overview
Solar Made Simple.
“Reduce your carbon footprint and your power bills by subscribing to a community solar project through Oregon Shines.”
Oregon Shines works to provide Oregonians access to clean, renewable solar projects as efficiently as possible through Oregon's Community Solar program. Oregon Shines believes it is their mission to create a sustainable future for generations to come as they fight the ongoing climate crisis.
Oregon Shines has skillfully used their brand ambassador referral program to increase the solar project signup conversion rate and increase overall user engagement. What’s really impressive is even though Oregon Shines doesn’t heavily promote the program on social media, the ease of participating and sharing the program within private email communications and chat groups works especially well for local communities.
Oregon Shines offers double-sided rewards to incentivize both the referrers and the referrals with a $25 e-gift card when the referred friend(s) sign up for the Community Solar program.
Oregon Shines sends a reward email with the e-gift card link to both the referrer and the referral after each successful referral conversion.
Program Participant Flow
Organic and referred subscribers are captured differently in the Oregon Shines referral program.
Anyone interested in joining the referral program will sign up through a form embedded on the Referral Program landing page, available at the top navigation on their website.
Oregon Shines uses the ReferralHero Widget on the page to capture organic signups.
Subscribers are immediately shown their unique referral link and social share options when the signup form is submitted.
Subscribers may now invite other people to sign up by sharing their unique referral link via Facebook, Twitter, Facebook Messenger, email, LinkedIn, or SMS.
Oregon Shines doesn’t impose a limit to how many people one can refer and how much they can earn. Subscribers are encouraged to refer as many eligible customers as they’d like to sign up for a Community Solar project through Oregon Shines.
Once subscribers are in, they can visit the same page at any time and select the ‘Check my status’ option in the ReferralHero Widget. Subscribers will be able to see a list of everyone that has signed up using their referral link along with their application status, i.e unconfirmed vs confirmed.
Referrals don’t opt in through the same form as the organic subscribers. Instead, when they click on a referral link shared with them, they will be redirected to the Community Solar project signup form. This method allows Oregon Shines to use their existing project signup form which doubles as the referral opt-in form.
When the form is submitted, ReferralHero will automatically create the friend as a new unconfirmed referral applicant in the Oregon Shines’ multi-step referral program.
Referrals receive a Welcome email immediately after they are added to the referral program.
The multi-step referral funnel requires Oregon Shines to confirm that they have all of the referral applicant information, i.e. a utility bill in the referral’s name, before they can ‘confirm’ them.
Once confirmed both parties receive the $25 e-gift cards sent to their email address.
Referral Program Launch
Oregon Shines maintains an active social presence on Facebook and LinkedIn to promote their core business, the Community Solar project. Several tactics such as adding links to posts, consistent engagement with the audience, using content techniques to encourage click-throughs, etc, have successfully led to improved traffic to the Oregon Shines website.
Oregon Shines referral program is announced through a dedicated landing page on their website. The Referral Program landing page on the website is very informative. It includes the program signup form, a flow diagram that illustrates the sequential sets of steps that people have to follow, and a FAQs section.
Program Ongoing Promotion
Oregon Shines Participants are reminded and educated about the ambassador program with a number of touchpoints.
Oregon Shines prioritizes the Referral Program page by placing a direct link right at the top of the website navigation menu.
The referral program CTA placed right below the referral flow diagram on the Referral Program landing page not only states the action Oregon Shines wants users to take (‘Start Referring’), but also provides them with a reason why they should take that action (‘You both get $25’).
Oregon Shines is successfully able to promote the referral program while keeping their core product as the focus of the website.
Oregon Shines enables double opt-in which sends subscribers a confirmation email immediately upon signup to ensure that only real people are signing up for their program.
Subscribers receive the following Welcome email as soon as their email is confirmed.
Other ReferralHero emails
Participants receive a series of ongoing emails that remind and motivate them to continue referring. Other ReferralHero automated emails Oregon Shines uses include:
- Pending welcome email, sent when a referral submits an application.
- Confirmed welcome email, sent when a referral application is confirmed.
- Activation email, sent 7 days after signup
Participants continuously promote Oregon Shines and share their referral link on Facebook and other social media platforms.
Ambassador Program Results
On the first day of the campaign going live on Aug 4, 2022
- Number of subscribers: 1
- Number of referrals: 0
Results after one month on Sept 4, 2022
- Number of subscribers: 44
- Number of referrals: 8
- Referral rate: 22.73% (10/44)
- Referral growth: 25% (8/(44-8))
All time results as of Dec 29, 2002
- Number of subscribers: 183
- Number of referrals: 106
- Referral rate: 12%
- Referral growth: 137.7%
Oregon Shines has now been able to unlock exponential growth for their business, and their success is not unusual.
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