Word-of-Mouth and Referral Marketing Blog

Lingerie Referral Program Example: The Success Of Leonisa

Leonisa sells beautifully crafted and technologically advanced shapewear and lingerie, as well as sportswear.

With a 60 year legacy and more than 5,000 workers as part of the Leonisa company, Leonisa has grown into a huge brand that’s here to stay.

The lingerie brand started in Colombia and expanded to having stores in 9 countries and counting. They’re also the number 1 lingerie brand in Latin America.


They have a referral program in most of the countries they have transactions with, and they also have an impressive referral rate – they raked in 78 referral sales just in December alone!

How have they kept up their success through the modern era, despite their long legacy?

We talk to them to find out more.

Their main marketing tactics are…


Sebastian from Leonisa shared with us an overview of their marketing strategy. They combine tactics like pay-per-click campaigns, referral programs (ours!), and weekly newsletters with compelling offers.

Beyond online strategies, Leonisa also mails out physical catalogues featuring their latest products.

Their priorities and challenges…

leonisa international sites

Other than making sure they cater to every market, their other priority is making sure their website is easily usable for their customers.

“Our goal is to make sure that the customers can understand every step of their purchase. We want it to be an easy, hassle-free process for every customer.”

However, despite being a well-established company, Leonisa has their own set of challenges as well.

leonisa germany website

The first challenge is entering new markets, where we are dealing with different countries with different languages, cultures and backgrounds. We’re currently setting up a website in Germany, and getting through the language barrier is a challenge. It’s important that we communicate our product benefits, latest offers and purchasing process in a way that resonates with the local customers.”

The second is to maintain our growth rate. We intend bring Leonisa to two or three (new) countries every year. Achieving such scale without compromising on quality is a challenge for our team.

The third is differentiating ourselves in a mature market. We have competitors with well-structured websites and good usability, who can afford to advertise heavily. To get new customers in these conditions, we need to continue to differentiate our product by emphasizing our innovation and state-of-the-art garments.”

Finally, the perennial challenge is to constantly be improving our business– to increase our conversion rate on every site, in every country, for all our products.”

How has referral marketing helped them in their goals and challenges?

leonisa referral programLeonisa first launched their flagship referral program on their US site.

Their monthly metrics looked promising, and indicated that referrals could bolster their customer acquisition effort across the board. So Leonisa decided to setup referral programs for their other sites in other countries.

It has been a great success, and they are planning to roll out more programs in the future.

“I think referral marketing has been successful because it keeps us close to our customers. Our current customers get rewarded, while new potential customers get to learn about our brand through their friends. We can also learn more about Leonisa’s customers in the process.”

In turn, they hope to be able to further strengthen their conversion rates by improving their current referral program.

“We want to continue to get more leads and get even more revenue out of our referral program. To do that, we need to keep getting better at communicating our offers. We’re going to feature our referral program on all our newsletters, because it has lots of potential that we want to tap into.”

Their current referral strategy is…

Currently, Leonisa offers $20 off to advocates, and 10% off to friends.

Because they often do not have very “aggressive” offers or sales, they see these discounts as the ‘last motivation’ to make purchases.

Sebastian explains:

“We don’t want people to be interested primarily in discounts. We want people to buy the products because of the design, quality, and comfort instead, so we can earn brand loyalty. The discount should be a slight push factor, but not the main reason for the purchase.”

They particularly like ReferralCandy because..


They love the new dashboard, particularly its customizability (without needing the help of engineers!)

“If we want to change the subject of one of the emails, or want to change stuff, we can do it immediately (by ourselves).”

Their goals in the future:

Even as Leonisa has achieved so much, they want to keep pushing the boundaries and expand their brand further.

“We want to continue growing in Europe and USA, and maybe break into Asia by 2020. It’s very important for us to continue using ReferralCandy in order to increase our sales.”


Read next: How To Setup Your Referral Program Incentives (With 12+ Examples!)

Melody Madhavan

Melody Madhavan

Melody is a history major and part of the pioneer batch of Yale-NUS College. She hopes to be able to bring forgotten historical narratives back to life, and learn how to make the perfect latte.

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