“THE PURPOSE OF A BUSINESS IS TO CREATE A CUSTOMER WHO CREATES CUSTOMERS.” – SHIV SINGH, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF GLOBAL BRAND AND MARKETING TRANSFORMATION AT VISA
I like to define business as a system of people helping each other. We solve our clients’ problems and in return, they pay us for it. Every business transaction requires some sort of give and take.
After a series of these transactions we begin to form a great relationship with our customers but then what? We solve their issues and they compensate us for it but how do we deepen the relationship even further?
Referrals are the answer…
What are referrals?
Referrals are when you ask a current customer to refer your product or service to someone who they feel can benefit from the solutions that you are providing.
Why are referrals important?
Check out these statistics…
77% of consumers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it from friends or family. – Nielsen
Word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20% to 50% of all purchasing decisions. – McKinsey
84% of consumers say they either completely or somewhat trust recommendations from family, colleagues, and friends about products – making these recommendations the information source ranked highest for trustworthiness. – Nielsen
Convincing isn’t it? But these statistics aren’t the only upsides of referral marketing. Referral marketing is free, even if you offer your current clients incentives to refer a friend you can still make money or break even.
Tips for referral marketing
Stress your referral program during your on-boarding process
You just received a new client and you are taking them through your on-boarding process. In this stage of the sales process, you should excite your new customer because they just made a purchase and you must remind them of what they are going to gain because of your partnership.
One way to excite your client is to introduce them to your referral program. Explain in detail what incentives they could receive if they were to refer someone they know to your business. Your referral program should be engraved in the mind of your buyer by the end of the on-boarding process.
Use this as a time to see how you are doing with your current clients
This method will help you get more referrals as well as show you what aspects of your business that can be improved. Before you ask for a referral ask your client this question.
“If you could rate our product or service on a scale of nine to ten what number would you rate it?” If they respond with a nine or ten ask for a referral. If they respond with an eight or lower instead of asking for a referral ask why they gave you that rating and what you can do to make their rating a ten.
This is important because no one will refer someone that trusts them to a service that they aren’t fully satisfied with. A happy customer should come before the referral.
Give out referrals to your clients
Remember business requires a give and take. Don’t just be on the receiving side of the referral stick. Shoot your client some referrals too. If your client is a landscaper introduce them to some friends that need their yard cut. If your customer is a lawyer refer friends that need legal advice to them. The more you give the more someone will feel inclined to give to you. This will create a stronger relationship with your client.
Make your clients aware of your referral campaign through every channel
Your referral campaign should be everywhere. It should be on your website, social media, sent through emails, and you should even mention it on phone calls with your clients. Everyone should be aware of your referral program. Demand their attention!
Types of incentives to offer
- Cash – Discounts – A free product or service
- Special offers
- Two-sided incentives (Incentive for new client and old client)
Referrals are what you need to grow your business. If you aren’t utilizing a referral program right now you should do so. If you need some assistance building your referral program feel free to contact us at [email protected] or (954)-633-2963