By Josh Amidon
Challenge: Ask any business owner “what way do they generate the most new business” and I’ll bet you everything I have (except for my dogs, I love my dogs) they answer “word-of-mouth.” With that being said, I don’t think business owners fully understand what that means. Few businesses really harness the power of referral marketing by making it a major part of their marketing efforts.
First let me tell you why you need to do this.
- When a trusted friend tells you about a business you transfer that trust to this company…even if you’ve never heard of them before.
- People who are referred to a business tend to spend more money. Research has proven this beyond the shadow of a doubt and it is likely because people tend to refer other who are highly qualified and not just tire kickers, window shoppers or price detectives.
- Referrals are very cost-effective. In most cases, free or a fraction of what you might pay in advertising costs.
In some industries, like consulting and professional services most companies are chosen solely on the recommendation of a friend.
Are you getting your referrals…if not consider these little ideas.
- Expect to get referrals but don’t assume you will. It doesn’t hurt to prompt customers by saying “don’t be shy about sharing my info with your friends.” Talk about them early and often and build them into your sales and marketing efforts…don’t wait for people to offer them.
- Create a system or reward program. It can be as simple as advertising $20 for every referral.
- Give every client 2 or 3 business cards – so they can share them with others. Don’t tell me “oh Josh, that’s just wasteful!” Look in your drawer you’ve got hundreds just sitting there – THAT’S wasteful.
Referrals are essential to your business so don’t overlook them chasing the newest trend in marketing in your industry. Remember, you want GOOD referrals – studies show a customer will share a bad business experience with 8x more friends and family than a positive one. If you need anything, please don’t hesitate to call me at (315) 258-8780 or email firstname.lastname@example.org