Why Peer-to-Peer Marketing Works

The world of digital marketing is constantly expanding. But some good old techniques can still increase your brand’s visibility. Have you ever asked your tech-savvy friend to recommend an app and then downloaded it right away? Or messaged your skincare-obsessed sibling about the best moisturizer for your skin type and then tried it?

Consumers prefer recommendations from their peers. It is especially true for Millennials and Gen Z. They are not super interested in celebrity endorsements anymore. Instead, younger generations want to learn about products their friends use and love.   

It is why peer-to-peer marketing is becoming more popular than influencer marketing. Therefore, it is important to hop on the bandwagon right away!

What is peer-to-peer marketing?

Peer-to-peer marketing is not a brand new thing. Instead, it is a better version of word of mouth. This type of marketing happens when a customer recommends your product or services to someone they know. A brand can get a free advertisement and a new customer, so what’s not to love?

Brands should prompt their customers to share their reviews on various social media platforms. These could be their opinions on the products, customer support, delivery, packaging, etc. And the best part is that 88% of people are interested in the products recommended by their friends and family.

So how can brands motivate their customers to share reviews? Give them something in return! A discount code, free samples, or even membership in a loyalty program can go a long way. Plus, this relationship with the customers can build trust because you are not expecting a five-star review. All you are asking for is honesty.

What makes peer-to-peer marketing work?

Reading a real review written by an actual person is way more valuable than seeing an influencer peddle a product on their Instagram profile. Younger generations are no longer interested in flashy advertising. Instead, they often read online reviews. A total of 89% of consumers always go through reviews before purchasing a product.

Peer-to-peer marketing creates trust between current and future customers. Brands that accept less than stellar reviews and don’t censor the complaints are more popular than those with a history of deleting negative comments. If they do their best to fix the existing problems with a product or a service, the consumers will reward that effort.

Peer-to-peer marketing vs. influencer marketing

Influencer marketing has been all the rage for a while now, and it seems like regular social media users are getting a bit tired of it. It doesn’t mean that influencer marketing is obsolete. On the contrary, brands and companies are still collaborating with social media superstars. And it can be successful if done right.

But consumers are aware that the influencers are getting paid to promote a product, and you never know if they believe in what they are selling. Instead, it is better to ask your friends or family for a recommendation. And that is how peer-to-peer marketing works – it is way more genuine than influencer marketing.

Influencers are the celebrities of this day and age. Therefore, collaborations are usually not available to smaller businesses. The rates could be too high, even when working with micro-influencers who have less than 50,000 followers.

How to start peer-to-peer marketing

Having incredible products is the first step, but what to do if the reviews are not coming in? Here are a couple of suggestions on how to start peer-to-peer marketing:

  • Surveys: Getting to know your audience is crucial for a successful business. And the best way to do that is through surveys. If you are getting into peer-to-peer marketing, ask your customers more specific questions, such as would they recommend your brand to a friend or their experiences shopping in your store.  
  • Encourage the reviews: Always ask your customers for reviews and comments. Make it easy for them to contact your business on social media or via email. Their opinion matters, and it is an excellent way to strengthen the relationship with the consumers.
  • Reward the recommendations: As previously mentioned, loyalty programs are great for rewarding loyal customers. You can also offer them points or discounts for every friend or family member they refer to your online shop.