Why Should Races Use Referral Rewards?

This organic promotion generates buzz, expands your reach, and attracts participants who are more likely to convert due to recommendations from trusted sources.

Repeat Registrations

Referral Rewards not only encourages participants to recruit others but also strengthens their engagement with your race and builds loyalty for higher repeat registrations. 

Increased Registrations

Referral Rewards provides an incentive for participants to spread the word about your race. By offering rewards to individuals who refer friends, family, or colleagues to register, you tap into their networks and reach a wider audience. This boosts registration numbers and helps your race grow year after year.

Cost-Effective Marketing

Referral Rewards leverages the power of word-of-mouth marketing, which is highly effective and cost-efficient. The average cost is just $0.98 per each new referred registration.

How Referral Refunds Work

1.Offer an Automated Referral Reward

Set up a Referral Rewards Program. Your program will include a threshold (the number of people a participant successfully refers) and a reward (the refund or swag a participant gets if they reach that threshold). If you set your threshold at 3 referrals for a reward, participants who refer 1 or 2 participants to your event do not get a reward.

2. Automated Tracking

RunSignup’s referral rewards tool automates the referral tracking process, eliminating the need for manual record-keeping. The system assigns a unique referral link to each participant and includes it on their confirmation page and confirmation email for easy sharing. Then, RunSignup accurately attributes referrals to participants and automates the rewards process to reduce administrative burdens.

3. Refund Rewards

Money talks. Refunds are the most popular reward for referrals because it’s easy to manage and motivating to everyone. Our standard recommendation is a $20 refund for 5 referrals, but you can customize the amount refunded and the threshold of referrals.

4. Swag Rewards

Beyond refunds, you can reward your participants with premium swag,  VIP race day experiences, and more. While you do have to manage any swag fulfillment, RunSignup’s swag rewards system makes it easy by automatically notifying the participant to select a size or variant option (as needed) when they hit the threshold for your swag rewards.

5: Track and Monitor Referral Performance

RunSignup’s comprehensive dashboard provides real-time data on referral activity. You can track the number of referrals generated, successful conversions, and the performance of individual participants. This information helps you identify top referrers, measure the effectiveness of your referral program, and make data-driven decisions to optimize your marketing efforts.

Cost Per Acquisition is $0.98
Referral Rewards ROI is 5262%
% Transactions from 6%

Get More Out of Your Referral Rewards

  1. Customize your Social Sharing Options: Participants can seamlessly share their referral codes and race information on popular social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter – customize your images and messaging to sell your race.
  2. Stack Rewards: Offer multiple reward tiers to incentivize your super referrers to keep referring after they reach your initial reward threshold.
  3. Include Exclusive Swag or Merchandise: If you’re offering swag such as t-shirts, hats, water bottles, or other branded merchandise, make sure it’s high quality and something that’s not available to participants outside the referral program.
  4. Offer an Upgraded Race Experience: Consider a creative approach to rewarding your high performing referrers by offering a VIP experience instead of traditional swag. This could include perks like early access to next year’s registration, preferred start times, free parking, special bib numbers, access to exclusive areas, or post-race amenities. 
  5. PROMOTE YOUR PROGRAM: Referral rewards only works if your participants know about it. Add referral program information to your website cover page, social media channels, and email communications. To automate reminders about the program, set up automated registration follow-up emails and a replacement tag with their unique referrer link.

Tips for Successful Rewards Program

Clear and Concise Communication

Promote Early and Often

Measure and Analyze Results

Actively Engage with Participants

Provide Pre-Made Promotional Content

Offer Attractive Incentives ($15+)

High Enough Threshold
(3-5 referrals)

Create a Sense of Competition

Other Rewards Programs to Motivate Registrations

Beyond referral rewards, RunSignup offers a range of pricing options and rewards programs you can implement to encourage your participants to sign up fast and invite their friends.

Team/Group Rewards

Make it simple for participants to register in minutes with a dynamic, mobile-friendly, and customizable registration platform.

Donation Discounts

Take advantage of free marketing tools including email and websites as well as built-in referral programs, incentive-base pricing setups, and social sharing settings.

Age-Based Pricing

Raise more for your nonprofit, charity partner, or multiple charity partners with integrated donations and fundraising tools.

Club Discounts

Streamline your RaceDay operations with flexible bib assignment, a speedy CheckIn App and simple on-site registration options.

Promote your Referral Rewards Program on your Cover Page, Website, or Social Media

Some of our favorite examples of promoting a referral rewards programs

How To Setup and Manage:

Most Recent Blogs on Referrals

Referral Rewards to Increase Registrations

Referral reward programs empower participants to become the ambassadors for your race and allow you to reach a broader audience with minimal investment. RunSignup offers events an easy way to set up and run an referral effective program to help bring in more registrations. Below provides guidance on how to set up a successful program using the free tools within your race dashboard.

Read More

Increase Registrations with Pricing and Referrals

Events across the country are looking for ways to help increase registrations in the midst of an uncertain economy and lingering effects of pandemic challenges. One of the most effective ways to help increase registrations is through pricing strategies and offering rewards…

Read More

Virtual Race Referral Rewards

As you go to open up your virtual race – whether it is a brand new idea, or a virtual version of your traditional race or fundraiser – you will need to learn some new things. We give you a ton of…

Read More

Swag Rewards!

We released a new Swag Rewards capability, allowing race directors to give participants swag for reaching specific milestones. In V 1.0, race directors can choose to issue swag to participants once they refer a specified number of participants to register for their…

Read More

Referral Names in Participant Profiles

We have added a way for referrers to view the names of their referrals through their RunSignup profile. Registrants/Referrers can view this information by going to their PROFILE and selecting the MY REFERRALS tab: From there, the referrer will be able to…

Read More

Passing Referral Codes to MailChimp

RunSignup Referral Rewards Program is one of the best ways to increase viral participation. You can reward participants to promote your race by offering them partial or full refunds when they get X number of their friends to sign up for your…

Read More

The Mighty Mud Dash Encourages Referrals

Referrals can be one of the single most powerful marketing tools for your race, making up 7-13% of total registrations for races with referral rewards activate. To maximize the program, your runners have to: The Mighty Mud Dash in Texas (www.mightymuddash.com) is…

Read More

Manually Add Referral Codes to Registrations

You can now add Referral Codes to Registrations. This happens when you get called up by a participant who says they referred a friend (although the friend did not click on the referral link so the system would automatically catch it) and…

Read More

Negative Split Productions Case Study

We have a series Customer Case Studies, in which we take your stories and share your challenges and successes as a learning tool for other RunSignUp users.  This Case Study focuses on RunSignUp Race Websites, the Referral Program, and the RaceDay CheckIn Mobile App.  Download PDF…

Read More

Manually Add Referred Registrations

With the release of our Automated Referral Rewards program, some race directors have been approached by participants wanting to get credit for a registration. This may come about because they did not share their specific link with the referral tag, or they talked with…

Read More

RunSignup Referrals Program Returns Strong ROI Results

RunSignup’s Referrals 2.0, released in late January, has been impressing races with strong early ROI results. The program allows for an automated refund of a set amount for Referrers who successfully refer a pre-determined number of registrants (as set by the Race…

Read More

Referral Rewards Deliver Large ROI

The next time you hear that viral word of mouth marketing does not pay off for a race, show them this page (or you hear silly people say a registration vendor can’t have an impact on race registration). We have had a…

Read More
Show More

Subscribe to Our Blog

Customize Lists...