Asking for Referrals: How to do it Properly
Asking for referrals is an extremely important piece to your sales process. As a matter of fact, it’s been said that one of the greatest indicators of the success of a company is the percentage of referrals amongst its clients. Those who are referred usually tend to spend more money, to be less sensitive in terms of prices and they have a lot less objections. In other words – these are nearly risk-free customers. However, getting to them is no walk in the park. Providing flawless product on the market is far from being enough. It’s a matter of employing the right strategy in order to make asking for referrals an effective and scaling undertaking.
With this in mind, below you will find some comprehensive tips on how to handle this effectively and in a manner which scales with your business.
Being Direct Matters
Being passive won’t get you anywhere. As a matter of fact, this is something which is likely to get you overlooked. Instead, you should ask your clients directly – through email, on the phone or in person. Getting through the fear of asking for referrals is undoubtedly the first challenge you’d have to tackle and it is one which is pretty serious. Do not feel sheepish about it – just approach it directly and rest assured that there is nothing pushy when it comes to it. People wouldn’t recommend you unless you actually deserve it anyways.
Personalize the Endeavor
Studies show that personal requests are 41% more likely to be successful than automated messages. Of course, in the context of our vast corporate world, it might be rather challenging to approach each one of your million customers individually.
This is where automation comes into the picture in an attempt to make your undertakings scalable. Be very attentive to the tools that you take advantage of to send out referral requests as this is going to determine whether you get that recommendation or not.
Be Very Specific
Every request for a referral must tap into the memory of your client. You should use his satisfied customer experience to your advantage. Keep in mind that positives are easy to forget. What is more, you shouldn’t broaden your request, making it sound like you’d like to be recommended to anyone. Ask for specific people which may be interested in what you have to offer.
Make It Easy On Your Client
It wouldn’t be prudent to write on the topic of referrals without referencing Mike Garrison. In one of Mike’s many valuable contributions to the topic he describes the Referral Kit (TM) Solution. Give your customer packaged up information that educates a prospect on the challenges, opportunities and consequences he/she faces and motivates them to take the next step. This makes the process easier and takes the risk away from your client, they’re providing value to relationships vs. extracting favors.
As we mentioned above, as your company grows bigger and your customer base expands, it’s critical to make sure that your referral requests scale with it. This is done through the usage of comprehensive and effective automation tools.
There are convenient options readily available for you to take advantage of. Make sure that you specialize in using whatever tool you find appropriate. Automation could easily take out the personalization of your referral requests and this is something that you clearly can’t have.
With this in mind, referrals are an effective way to broaden your customer reach and to expand your enterprise. Remember that a referred client has a 50% close rate.
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