I love this video. Even though it focuses on the Real Estate industry, its easy to imagine how to use these same tips for growing your own referral system within a referral network. Thanks to Beth Davis, CEO of Gold Star Referral Clubs!
I love this video about Gold Star Referral Clubs. Referral Clubs are helping local businesses thrive in an uncertain economy and they are doing so all around the country.
Referrals are the lifeblood of a small business. According to John Jantsch, author of The Referral Engine, he surveyed several thousand small business owners and found that 63.4 percent felt that over half their business came by way of referrals. So anything you can do to improve your flow of referrals is golden for you! Here are 5 Tips on growing through referrals:
1. Encourage Referrals
Referrals come from multiple sources, including Gold Star Referral Clubs if you’re lucky enough to have one in your community,other business owners you know, customers that love you and are your fans, your strategic business partners like suppliers and sometimes your next door neighbor! The best way to get more referrals is to encourage these to send you referrals. So don’t be shy, let them know that referrals are the lifeblood of your business and you would really value their referrals and hope that they will recommend your business to their customers, business contacts, friends and family! But if you don’t let them know, don’t be surprised if their referrals go to your competitors.
2. Be Grateful
Okay if this sounds too New Age for you, what I mean is be sure to tell people who send you referrals how much you appreciate that referral. Reward their behaviors and be sure to follow up with them. And don’t just call them when a referral resulted in a new customer, call them after every single referral. Be grateful, it goes a long way toward getting you more referrals!
3. Roll Out the Red Carpet
The best way to deal with a referred prospect is to treat them like a celebrity! Make them feel special. Engage them by asking them how they know the person who referred them. Tell them that referral customers are your favorite kind of customers. And share the glory by edifying the person who sent you, which will further strengthen the relationship that person has with your new prospect as well. And if for some reason you can’t provide what they need, don’t try to “sell” them on something else, just refer them to the business that can help them; and be sure to call that business owner ahead and pave the way for celebrity treatment there as well! If you will do this, your prospective customers will love you, word will get back to the business that referred them and they will love you and send you more referrals too! Where’s the downside?
4. Create a Referral Plan
Think about your referral business as a precious asset. Nurture more referrals by planning for them. Plan ways to encourage others to refer to you. Plan how you are going to treat the new referred prospects, including training and teaching your employees to treat them like celebrities too. Consider rewarding employees for referring customers to you, and always reward employees for remarkable customer service! If you’ll do this, word will get out and more businesses will want to refer customers to you; customers will want to refer to you as well!
5. Give to Receive
One of the best ways to get more referrals is to make referrals to other businesses. People are naturally inclined to respond in like manner. After a few referr4als to one of your suppliers, don’t be surprised if you start receiving referrals from them as well. One of the ways I encourage my clients to grow their referrals is to start a Gold Star Referral Club in their community. That way you will have weekly interaction with 25 other business owners who are motivated and educated to pass referrals to you.
So if you own a business you definitely want to encourage more referrals. Be grateful for ever4y referral and let others know how much you appreciate their referrals. Get your employees involved and give referrals to receive referrals! If you’ll do this, you’ll have more referrals, more customers, and more profits, guaranteed!
Whether I’m making calls to find new members for a Gold Star Referral Club, prospecting for customers for my distribution business, or just looking at a list of chores around the house, sometimes I need some motivation. When that happens I like to turn to the expert of experts, sales guru Jeffrey Gittomer! Here is the video I like to watch every time I need that extra kick to get moving! See if you like it too!
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The New York Times best sellers, Social Boom, The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Black Book of Connections, and The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude.
What is a referral? A referral should be a very big deal! A referral is not just someone sending you a prospective customer; it is much more important than that. A referral represents a state of trust, the trust the other person has in you to provide remarkable service to the individual they are referring. That trust is a measure of the relationship you have achieved with the other business owner, and it is an asset to you! But there is more, another relationship to consider.
Chances are that the potential customer being sent your way is either a valued customer, a friend, or at least an acquaintance of the business owner who referred them. That means whatever you do, however you respond and deal with that referred person will reflect back on the reputation AND the relationship that customer has with the other business owner!
So with a referral, you have three relationships to consider. First is the relationship you need to build with the prospective customer. After all, that’s what you’re in business to do, right? Build relationships with customers so they buy more and more from you?
Second is the relationship the referring business owner has with this prospective owner. That relationship has value and you have been entrusted with the responsibility of protecting it. This can be done a couple of ways. When you speak with the prospective customer, be sure to speak positively and gratefully about the business owner who sent them. This respect for the other business owner will help strengthen the potential customer’s relationship with the referring business owner. Besides, didn’t Mom always say to be gracious when receiving a gift? If nothing else, a referral is a gift!
The third relationship you must consider when receiving a referral is the relationship between you and the other business owner. After all, they just sent you a gift and trusted you with a valued asset. Call them and thank them for the referral. If the referral was not a fit, educate them graciously because they want to make satisfactory referrals (part of their reputation depends upon it). Once the business with the prospective customer is complete, circle back and let the referring business owner know how it turned out. Return the favor with a referral if you can, that is, if you can trust that other business owner to provide remarkable service to people you refer. Even if you don’t send them a referral, showing gratitude for their referral, communicating with them, and delighting the potential customer they sent you will go a long way towards receiving a future referral from that business owner.
Referrals are big deals. They represent relationships and trust. They oblige you to provide your best service possible. And they get you new customers. And that’s a big deal!