Imagine your business not having to spend a cent on advertising to attract new customers; where every new customer that comes through your door comes by a way of referral from your existing customers – and that those referred customers arrive with a positive preconception and a willingness to spend their money with your business. Sounds like a dream come true, right?
Having a referral system in place is the fastest way to convert current customers into a referring goldmine for your business. The best thing about a referral system is that all new customers coming in to your business via referral will in turn bring you MORE new customers to your business as a future referrer – yet the referral system itself costs virtually nothing!
So how can you start your own referral sales pipeline in your business?
5 Keys to Attracting More Referrals:
- Become more “attractive” to your customers – Your customer service and the results you deliver must be outstanding. It is not just about offering a great service. It‘s about offering MORE than expected. Focus on all aspects of your business including, the appearance of your premises, the attitude of your team, quality of your product and even the way you answer the phone.
- Give customers an incentive for referring their friends – Think of an exciting introductory offer that you can make to potential clients, for example, a free meal at your restaurant or a complimentary hair cut at your hair salon. Come up with something that has high perceived value of $50-$100 but low hard cost, say $10 or less.
- Actively ask for referrals – Start asking for referrals NOW. It will radically increase your results. The best time to ask for referrals is directly after a sale. This is when customers are most excited about your company.
- Develop a system for encouraging referrals – Having a systemised way of making sure referrals happen will improve your results even further. For example, you could provide customers a reward or gift (referral dollars or something tangible) for every paying customer they refer your way. Then for referred customers you could offer a “welcome” gift or deal. It’s important to offer the person being referred something special just for being the friend of the customer. This helps your customer look like a “hero” in the eyes of their friend.
- Set the expectation up-front – Let your customers know that you would like them to refer others to you when you first meet them. Simply ask that they refer at least one customer of similar calibre to your business when they are happy with your product or the service that you offer.
What you can do today:
- Ensure your employees are delivering outstanding customer service in all areas of your business.
- Develop a system to ask for referrals throughout the year.
- Create referral incentives that encourage customers to refer their friends.
- Develop an introductory offer so that the customers’ friends also get a great deal.
- Identify other business associates who have a similar client base, and endorse each other to your client bases. (This is known as business referrals, and can be highly lucrative)