When we ask someone the question "WHERE DO YOUR SALES COME FROM", one of the most common answers we get is "WORD OF MOUTH"
Yet, what always surprises us is that none of the people we talk to actively seek or encourage referrals and positive word of mouth.**
Imagine if your business was already doing well from referrals and then you went out and encouraged it. Your customers would be more inclined to promote you, people would be more inclined to listen to your customers over any other form of marketing, and as a natural course - more people would buy from you!
So, doesn't it make sense to have a system in place where your whole team play an active role in encouraging and collecting referrals from your existing clients? Of course it does!
Here's how to put a decent referral system in place:
- Identify all of your past clients who would be likely to give you a referral. This can be simply done by going through your client database and identifying relevant past clients that you feel would be happy to refer your business.
- Send those clients a letter offering an incentive for referring new clients to you. This may be extra product for free on their next order, a special gift or even a cash reward!
- Make a follow-up phone call a few days later and see if the client received the letter. This is also a good time to ask the client if they have anyone in mind.
- Keeping the system running. Once it becomes part of your system to get referrals from your clients, your team should be following these simple steps on a daily basis:
- A day or two after every job or major sale, follow up on the client. This shows the client you are doing a good honest job and that you care about the outcome of your work. During that call, you should ask for referrals. For example: "I am glad to hear it all went well for you! Can I just ask is there anybody else in your family or group of friends/workmates who may benefit from me calling in on them?"
- Once the call has been made, it is a good idea to send a follow-up letter thanking them for their feedback and reminding them of the incentive to make referrals.
- Whenever a lead comes as a result of referral, it is important that you adequately reward the referrer so that it reinforces the positive behaviour.
This is a really simple way to increase leads, and the beauty of it is that it doesn't come with the expense that traditional advertising does. Basically, you only pay for the results that you get.
The more your team get involved in making this system work, the better! Make it part of your everyday operations, and you will see the results.