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You're not alone: major issues faced by reference program managers

Posted by Bill Lee on September 17, 2009 at 10:41 AM
Based on a "flash" survey of 42 reference program managers that we conducted earlier this summer: 

1. Top reasons why customer reference programs may be falling short, in order (most cited reason first):
- Our program is under funding pressure.    
- Customer participation in the program is low.    
- We're spinning our wheels on important new initiatives– - like (developing) a partner reference program or global reference program -- and need guidance.    
- Our sales department is dissatisfied.
- Our market share is down compared to competitors with more extensive reference programs.
- We're spinning our wheels to develop a social media strategy, and need guidance.

2. Areas where reference managers feel they need more information:
-  How to increase participation by customers
-  Investing in and leverage social media
-  How to integrate reference programs with other customer engagement programs, such as advisory boards, customer communities, etc.
-  Best ways to measure reference programs
-  Setting budgets for reference programs
-  Gaining cooperation from Sales, Marketing or other stakeholders

For help establishing the value of your program and getting the funding you need, see the next topic. For immediate insights into how other reference programs are addressing the issues above (or other issues you may be having), join our
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