You have to love referral business!

Referral businessWord of mouth is one of the most effective ways to grow your business. It’s free, or at most costs very little, yet very few businesses use it to anywhere near it’s potential!

Consider this: if you got just one referral from each one of your clients, over the next 60 days you ‘d double your client base! What would that mean to your potential income and how many more people would you be helping in uplifting and supportive ways? Referral business is the best kind of business!

How do you maximize word of mouth and cash in with more referral business? Here are 5 Steps you can take now …

1. Really appreciate your clients and let them know consistently you value them

This is the most important, yet overlooked element of creating endless referrals. Many businesses focus more on profits than on people. Focusing on profits alone can be detrimental to success and ‘Word of Mouth’ success comes from looking beyond just profit into how you can enrich your customer’s lives.

Action: At least once a month, take the time to communicate to each of your clients and show them you appreciate them. Send them something of value, something unexpected, a bonus report, a special piece of news you just found. Make it relevant to them and do it regularly.

2. If you want more referral business create an exceptional experience each time they deal with you or your company

Your clients will want to tell a lot of people if you can make doing business with you an exceptional experience. People want amazing experiences!

Once every 8 weeks he invites his clients to a ‘brains trust’ meeting and the coffee and cake is on the house. Every client that attends gets a card and a voucher from the coffee shop owner to say ‘Thank you for joining us today, we would love to see you again soon’. And because the coffee shop owner is exposing his business to potential new clients or “referral business” the coach pays just cost price on the coffee and cake his clients eat.

Action: What can you do now to add little things that make an exceptional experience to create that referral business? Perhaps you can use the above example or something similar. Remember, start creating exceptional experiences today.

3. Give your customers incentives for giving you referrals

Then you’re sitting on a gold-mine, if you’re being passive about referrals. Come up with ways of rewarding your clients for referring business to you. They could receive free gifts, such as a 30 minute back massage voucher for referring a friend or a free Style Cut from an award winning beauty salon. The businesses involved would welcome the opportunity to have new clients come their way and would be happy to give that first style cut or treatment for free if they understand the potential value of a new customer.

Action: Reward your clients for referring people to you. Come up with rewards that will be beneficial to your clients. , if you worked with executive clients perhaps a free 30 minute health check at a trusted health center would be valuable or a voucher to use at an upmarket clothing boutique.

4. Make it easy for clients to give you referrals and ultimately referral business.

If you want to get lots of referrals, you must make it incredibly easy for your clients to tell their friends. Don’t expect them to go way out of the way to help you grow your business. Make it as simple as possible.

Action: Develop a ‘referral package’ that you give to your clients. Ask your clients to be an ambassador for your business as you wish to work with people similar to them. The package would include a letter explaining why referrals are important to you, and a series of referral cards that your client can give out to others. Present it professionally and it will hold more value, more worth.

5. Ask at the right time!

When is the best time to ask for referrals? Any time! If you have followed the steps listed above … you’ve let clients know they are appreciated, you’ve made dealing with you an exceptional experience, you give them an incentive to share your message with friends and you make it easy for them to do so … you can ask for referrals at any time.

Action: The key is to do something now. Draft up a letter or e-mail today and just send it off to your clients letting them know how much you value them, who much you have enjoyed working with them in the past and include something that is going to be helpful, useful for them to use, read or understand. Then over the next 4 to 6 weeks develop your ‘referral package’ and start to use it. Take yourself out of your comfort zone and take action … because if you don’t someone will and what will that mean to your business in the years to come.

Referral Business Pays

And because the coffee shop owner is exposing his business to potential new clients the coach pays just cost price on the coffee and cake his clients eat. If you want to get lots of referrals, you must make it incredibly easy for your clients to tell their friends. Action: Develop a ‘referral package’ that you give to your clients. The package would include a letter explaining why referrals are important to you, and a series of referral cards that your client can give out to others. If you have followed the steps listed above … you’ve let clients know they are appreciated, you’ve made dealing with you an exceptional experience, you give them an incentive to share your message with friends and you make it easy for them to do so … you can ask for referrals at any time. Getting more referral business is one of the best ways to grow your business.

There has been a lot of buzz over the past few years about a new form of marketing for a new marketing world, Customer Marketing.

Marketers such as Seth Godin have led a high profile assault on traditional marketing in favor of Customer Marketing.

The reason is simple– the consumer landscape has changed radically over the past 10 years and will continue to do so, because mass markets are fragmenting into niche markets.

This means that mass advertising becomes poorly targeted, and capturing a significant niche allows for cheaper and more productive marketing.

This means Customer Marketing

With the change in practice comes a shift in attitude, as “old” marketing gives way to priorities of the new Customer Marketing methods.

Customer MarketingIn their book Radical Marketing, Glen Rifkin and Sam Hill lay out their own set of rules for what they term Radical Marketing:.

  1. The company CEO is the primary marketer.
  2. Simplify marketing management.
  3. Direct interaction with customers.
  4. Don’t rely on the averages of market research.
  5. Use only passionate marketers.
  6. Treat customers as individuals, not numbers.
  7. Permission build a community to market to.
  8. Rethink your targeting methods.
  9. Use common sense.
  10. Keep focused on your brand identity.

This tends to reflect a more corporate view– that larger companies need to keep things simplified, and use staff who take {a real and passionate |a passionate and real} interest in their work.

However, very niche market targeting or Customer Marketing is becoming the necessary life-blood for small business, where new marketing isn’t simply about repositioning within new markets, but instead about capturing a spirit of entrepreneurial enterprise– where small remains most profitable where companies remain customer focused.Very niche market targeting is becoming the necessary life-blood for small business, where new marketing isn’t simply about repositioning within new markets, but instead about capturing a spirit of entrepreneurial enterprise– where small remains most profitable where companies remain customer focused.

In short, new marketing (Customer Marketing) is as much a rejection of corporate marketing, with it’s impassioned image, disdain for the customer, and focus on numbers, not people.

Customer Marketing is therefore focused on a passionate customer-focused marketing concept, which is especially typified at Creating Passionate Users:.

  • Focus on how the user kicks ass.
  • Evangelize.
  • Users have power.
  • Users “own” the brand.
  • Two-way conversation.
  • Personal service.
  • Word of mouth over advertising.

In short, as the marketing environment changes, so marketing methods have to change– the mantra of Customer Marketing is that as markets become more vertical, then marketing must invest first in people.