Would you like to open doors to new clients? Would you like to have existing customers help you with that by giving you referrals?
Are you a great company? Are you responsive offering quality service and products? Do you do what you say you are going to do? If not, you must first correct this. You must be all of the above for people to want to refer you to others. Do you provide a product or service to fit or solve your customer’s needs? Do you check with your clients to see how you did or ask if there are any ways in which you might improve or serve them better? If they give you suggestions to improve do you listen to them and implement some of their ideas? Cultivate strong relationships with your customers, be an expert in your field and be a team player with your customers. In the other words you both need to help each other out.
Do you give referrals? Your customer will be more apt to give you referrals if you send referrals their way. You know the old saying “it’s better to give than receive.” If you start giving referrals, your customers will be more inclined to give you referrals therefore helping to grow your business. This benefits you both.
Networking – Do you venture out of your office and network through local networking groups, Chambers, Associations? If there is a business you would like to be connected with do you ask others in your networking groups, church, friends or your social media contacts if anyone can give you an introduction? Have a well-thought out process and goals for pursuing new referrals. This can dramatically increase your referral business. Introductions are much more likely to lead to business. If someone introduces you, they are qualifying you and your business making it much easier for you to obtain a new client.
Connecting – It is especially difficult in today’s business world to connect with the right person. More and more organizations are having departments do their own purchasing making it very difficult to even find out who the correct contact person is. This is especially true in medium to larger corporations. If you are fortunate enough to meet or sell to someone else in the company ask them to introduce you to others within the organization that might purchase the products or services you sell. Read the business journal or local newspaper, search the internet to see what companies you might be interested in selling to are doing. You might see an opportunity where you can help them with your services or products many times a name may be mentioned in the article.
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you – Do you express your appreciation when someone does send you a referral? That is such a compliment to you and your business when they think enough of you to refer you to a friend or contact. Let them know how grateful and appreciative you are. I know some businesses send a small gift to the person giving the referral, others acknowledge with an e-mail, phone call or Thank You card. However, you choose to do it be sure and tell them how honored you are that they thought enough of you to refer you and how much you appreciate them. Additionally it’s nice to let them know rather you were able to do business with the person/company or not. You might say something like “Thank you very much for referring me to John Doe. I spoke with him and he was very pleased that you introduced us. I’m so happy we are going to be able to work together. I really appreciate your thoughtfulness. Are there any others that you can think of I might be able to help out?”
Implement the above steps, develop and implement a sound plan for pursuing new referrals and watch your business grow.