4 Effective Tactics to Increase Referral Rates
by Karen Alves, September 27, 2018
What’s one significant way to increase the chance of someone using your services? Have a friend refer them. That’s according to research from Nielsen, which reports that consumers trust word-of-mouth or recommendations from friends and family above all other forms of advertising. Here’s how to put that trust to work for your business.
- Give the client a great experience to talk about. Unless you provide a meaningful customer experience, a referral from that customer is highly unlikely. This doesn’t mean a project has to go off without a hitch, but it does mean that you must be consistent and professional in your communication style and willingness to resolve problems. Complete the project on time, keep the client informed of the timeline and costs, and make the process as enjoyable as possible to motivate the client to talk about you.
- Make it easy to refer you. Everyone is busy these days, so you must make it convenient for your customers to refer you if you want them to follow through. Set up a referral page on your website with information about the referral process (and incentives). Add a link to your referral page in your email signature, and require all employees to do the same. Make sure your employees talk about the referral program, and give them incentives too when they bring referrals.
- Offer incentive programs for referrals. When a job comes in that resulted from a customer referral, give that customer something to reward them for being your advocate: a gift certificate, a discount on your services, a check – something to make sure they are acknowledged for introducing you to their friends and family.
- Invest in relationship building. Have several communications with previous clients every year such as email newsletters, mailers, follow-up phone calls, warranty check-ins or any reason to have a communication “touch.” Use these communications to remind customers of the incentive you offer for referrals.
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