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Your most valuable customers – those that drive referral, not spend the most. While old-school types laugh this statement off, they may not be accounting for the integration of referral as a media touchpoint.

An excerpt of an interview with Shiv Singh, VP and Global Media Leader at Razorfish and author of Social Media Marketing for Dummies:

How would you recommend businesses that are new to social media marketing get started?

“The cliché response is to say that they need to start listening but that’s obvious. I believe rather than dipping their toes in the water with listening efforts alone, businesses must also quickly ask themselves whether they are willing to commit to participating in a world that has truly gone social. They need to quickly figure out whether their core products and services can benefit by becoming more social. They must ask themselves whether their products need digital extensions. And they must determine whether they know who their most valuable customers are – not the ones creating the most revenues but the ones bringing in the most other customers.”

Zealots – referral agents – are themselves a valuable form of media.  And, they are simply more credible than any other form of media available to marketers. Factor credibility into your marketing planning and see if you don’t look at referral and social media in a new light.

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