4 Simple Steps to Get More Business Referrals

Getting referrals is easier and less expensive than marketing to new customers, and referrals are often more loyal customers. Here are some quick tips to help get more referrals for your business.

Step 1
Referral Plan

Develop a customer contact plan for your business. Too often, companies complete a sale with no plan for follow-up. Develop a plan that will include contacting your customer 2-3 times after the initial sale, and at least 3-5 times per year. A company will lose 10% of their influence with a customer for each month there is no contact. Staying in touch by phone, snail mail, or email is critical for referrals. When customers see that you care, he or she will be happy to send you referrals.

Step 2
Phone Call

Provide follow-up from several sources. Do not just send an email. Often, thank you emails get stuck in spam filters. This is especially true if images are sent in the email. Send email, make follow-up calls, and send traditional greeting cards through the US Mail. Although we live in a tech society, more traditional forms of follow-up are sometimes the most effective way to connect with a client. Sending a heart felt thank you note is a great way to follow-up with a customer. Do not load your note full of advertisements, coupons, and sales offers. Share how much you value your customers business and how you will be there to support him or her with future needs. Personal contacts are a great way to keep your name in front of your customer, which will yield more referrals.

Step 3
Thank You Note

Send cards through the mail a few times throughout the year to your customer. Send your customer a birthday card without any expectation of business. Send a New Years card (not a Christmas card), and send a card when you have not seen him or her for an extended period of time. Remember, the key is to make a connection with your customer, and remind him or her of your commitment to customer service. Customer who know you care about them, will give referrals.

Step 4
Unlimited Referrals

Ask for a referral! About 90% of customers will give a referral. However, only about 20% of them are asked for one. When you phone your customer, ask him or her for a referral. Let him or her know that you would like to provide the same level of service to friends and family. Offer a small incentive if possible, and always send a thank you note when you receive a referral.

Source: eHow.com