Powering a mobile referral program

Monetize existing users, promote acquisition, drive re-engagement, and organically generate social proof

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What is a mobile referral program?

Share links from your app to drive installs and reward users for sharing.

A referral program involves rewarding users for promoting a product or feature to others. The referral is usually by text, email, or social messaging, and the “referring user” generally receives a reward for actions like signing up, downloading an app, or buying a product.

For example, Robinhood offers one free share of stock to both the referring user and the referred user when they place their first order.

Mobile referral example featuring our customer Robinhood. There are three phones that show a user getting a referral to earn stock and directly being able to download the app to redeem

Referral programs cover several different use cases

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A friend-to-friend (i.e. one-to-one) referral program

Referring users earn a bonus once the referred user downloads the app.

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An influencer-driven (i.e. one-to-many) referral program

Influencers (big or small) have the ability to maximize your reach by sharing your app across their platforms.

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Brand-driven campaigns

Brands can drive growth by incentivizing users with an exclusive bonus for downloading and using the app.

Why create a referral program?

Creating a referral program aligns your users’ motivations with your business incentives while providing valuable insights.

Drive app adoption

Multiply your installs by incentivizing users to both refer other users to install your app and then immediately promote additional installs.

Screenshot of a give $5, get $5 mobile offer from Shop Back

Increase user engagement

Accelerate app adoption and usage with referral programs that keep your acquired users engaged and active on your platform.

Screenshot of a mobile offer to get free stock from Robinhood

Deliver seamless user experiences

The modern mobile user expects mobile links to take them frictionlessly into apps, preserving the context from their initial link click, just like on desktop web.

Screenshot of mobile cash back offer from Shop Back

Incentivize users to increase conversions

Branch data uncovered that incentivized referrals drive a conversion rate of ~70%. Offering a double-sided incentive for referring users who complete the share is another tactic to drive conversion rates.

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Increase revenue 2x

A Branch study found that users who are referred by others are twice as valuable on average as other channels — with an average of around 200%-300% of the conversion rate and revenue per user (RPU) of other channels.

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Where Branch fits in

Building a referral program on your own is difficult, and virality is a challenging feature to build, optimize, and measure. We are a powerful mobile attribution and linking tool that accurately enables and measures cross-platform referrals.

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Best-in-class linking

Get the accurate link matching necessary to drive a successful referral program,  so that referred users are taken to the promotion or content they expect upon install. We can ensure a 100% match for referral links — even through install — with NativeLink.

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Reliable attribution

Identify and properly track clicks, installs, opens, and re-engagement to understand the performance of your mobile referrals. Branch allows you to connect the dots to see which users are referring users, and which shared content is driving the highest number of installs and re-engagements.

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Cross-channel analytics

Use our dashboard to compare the referral program’s performance to other features and user acquisition channels, measure demographic trends, and your app’s k-factor. Group links by referrer to understand who your most valuable users are for boosting your virality.

Aiming to go viral?

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5 Best Practices for Mobile Linking on Social Media

When done right, social media linking can be a powerful tool if you can create value for your target audience. By following the best practices we outline for you in this article, you can ensure your social media posts are compelling - and get the desired results.