What is a referral, by definition?
Here’s a great description, from HubSpot:
A business referral is when someone in your network recommends your business to a new prospect. This may happen spontaneously during organic conversation or as a result of conscious referral marketing efforts.
Referrals are an important part of any business. I grew my business strictly on referrals and the strong connections I built through nearly 20 years of networking. I have two binders full of business cards that I can sort through and use to connect people. Personally, I feel like there’s nothing better than making an introduction that results in a partnership!
Do you have a hard time ASKING for referrals? You don’t technically have to say the words, “Please refer me to a friend,” but it never hurts! And, if you’ve done a great job for someone, you SHOULD ask them to refer you.
Here are my top 5 ways to get referrals:
1. Go Above and Beyond
Go the extra mile for your current clients. This can be done in many ways – get creative! When your current clients are happy, they’re going to tell people. And remember… When they’re not happy, they’re also going to tell people!
2. Have a Rewards Program
Create a rewards program for when a friend makes a referral that becomes a client. It doesn’t have to be fancy or break the bank – it could be a “Wall of Champions” in your office where you list their name and company, or a simple coffee gift card per referral.
3. Provide a Template
If you build it, they will refer! Provide the information for people to simply forward or copy and paste. Send what you already have for your marketing pieces in a simple format that’s easy to share. No one wants to spend time recreating the wheel!
4. Leverage Your Social Networks
It’s so easy to provide referrals via social media. A photo of a product you are happy with, or a description of a service that was top-notch goes a long way. Tag the person or company who provided your excellent experience and simply say how important referrals are!
You must be active in referring your friends and colleagues, too! Make sure it isn’t one-sided and you’re doing your part to help them grow their business as well.
Let’s hear it from you!
How do you make a good connection?
What is the best referral you’ve ever received and what did it lead to?
And, most importantly, what’s the best referral you’ve ever GIVEN to someone – and what happened?
WHO are you looking to connect with?
Who are your clients?
Share with me via email, or in the comments, and let's see if there is a biz card in my binder that will make a good referral!
XO - Kel