Creating a valuable business referral plan can be vital to the continued growth of your company. Since the best source of referrals is always going to be happy consumers or clients, you cannot find a move valuable prospect than an individual that has been sent to your business from a satisfied customer. The biggest challenge for any business is how to get their satisfied customers to openly and actively promote their products and services.
Make the Business Referral Plan Work for You
There are a few basics to implement in any good marketing plan that will help to train your current clients to be walking, talking representatives of your business.
It may sound simplified and it is. However, often the simple task of asking for referrals falls to the wayside in the day-to-day grind oftentimes. The best time to ask for a business referral is while in the process of delivering the most excellent services or products. For etiquettes sake, try not to ask for referrals at the beginning of a transaction, but instead as the transaction is being completed such as when making changes or during the signing of a contractual agreement.
Teach Your Consumers to Work for Your Business
Make it as easy as possible for your current clients to refer your business. While many of your consumers would be happy to refer you, they may not know how. Create a short, catchy and easy-to-remember URL for referrals, or give away free business cards near where consumers pay or check out from your products or services. Buy or build a sign up box where customers can sign up to a monthly newsletter or jot down a friend’s contact information. If you utilize online review services like Yelp, make sure to share where consumers can go to leave you a positive review. Buy that easy-to-remember domain name to redirect to your review site.
Thank Your Referrers
Always thank referrers. Find a manageable system for rewarding and acknowledging those who refer their friends, family and associates to you. For those who refer entire businesses to you it’s important to find something bigger and better than the acknowledgements you give those individual referrers. Consider consulting a marketing expert to help you create your own method of referral rewards for your employees as well as your consumers or clients.
Word-of-mouth is still the best method of marketing referrals in today’s digital age. While many of the referrals today do come through digital platforms such as social networks, they are still, in essence, the same as those referrals given face-to-face. Those consumers who come to your business via a referral from a friend or associate are arriving on your business’s doorstep with a default level of increased trust that differs from a walk-in or browse-by type of consumer. Always nurture those relationships and you will have one more customer willing to increase the chance of word-of-mouth style referrals. This continual cycle of any good business referral plan will work for your business, even after closing time.
Christian Fea is CEO of Synertegic, Inc. A Joint Venture and Referral Marketing firm. He exemplifies how to profit from Joint Venture and Referral relationships by creating profit centers with minimal risk and maximum profitability.
Click here for more Referral Program Strategies to help you increase your profits.