Getting referrals for your business is the most reliable form of marketing that exists. It's credible because it isn't coming from you. It's coming from your customers or clients. Truly satisfied customers tell their friends and colleagues about your products or services, and as a result, you get the opportunity of doing business with these friends and colleagues. This is how your customers become ambassadors for your brand.
But obtaining referrals is not so easy. It requires some effort on your part. Here are some of the best ways you can acquire more referral business from your customers:
1. Offer products and services that are worth talking about- Bottom line: You can’t trick someone into referring you. Your products and services have to be worth referring. This means you need to deliver every time. Always keep your promises, and continuously deliver the same excellent service with every transaction. Greatness is worth telling others about.
2. Give customers an incentive for referring others. - Sometimes, your customers need a little push, a little motivation to get them talking about you. So reward them for referring business to you. You can reward them with discounts on future purchases or with actual cash.
3. Eliminate risk - When someone refers your business to a friend, he or she is putting their name on the line. If you fail to deliver, it makes them look bad. You can eliminate the risk of doing business with you by offering money back guarantees, free trials, buy now/pay later pricing, and other similar techniques.
4. Make it easy for referrers - Make sure your customers have all the tools they need to refer their friends to you. Give them business cards, your email address, your website, or something similar information so they know where to send the people they refer.
5. Ask for them - It's really simple: If you want referrals, just ask for them. Whenever a customer tells you how much they enjoyed doing business with you, thank them for the kind words and ask them to tell their friends about your business. It sounds simple enough, but it really works. You'll be surprised how many referrals you can get if you just step up and ask.
6. Let everyone know what you do - I'm not saying you need to be the constant self-promoter, but you should always be networking --- letting others know who you are and what you do. Even if they don't need your services, they may have a friend who does. It pays to have that elevator pitch ready at all times.