So why don’t we spend more time developing referral partners in order to increase the number of referrals we get?
If you’re new hear or just haven’t quite gotten your partnerships where you need them, let’s suggest that 2017 is the year you get serious about referral marketing. Here is a very simple 4-step plan that anyone can put in place.
- Identify and current standing or new strategic partnerships you want to maintain or strengthen this year. Think about who can refer the type of prospects that need your products and services.
- List them in the first column of a spreadsheet. Across the top, list out the months of the year.
- Each month, communicate with a few of your referral partners. The point is to stay top of mind, so that when they’re talking to a prospect or customer and the prospect/customer communicates a need for your products and services – you’ll be top of mind.
- Look for opportunities to refer business to these 5 contacts. Nothing keeps you top of mind as effectively as helping your referral partner close business.
And it’s really that simple. But it may not always be easy.
Getting started is the hardest part and maintaining the momentum of regular communication is crucial. ‘I just didn’t have time this month’ is the number one cause of failure. However, when business owners make the time – decide that this is the one thing they will make sure happens – the results are energizing. There are more qualified opportunities. There is more revenue coming into the business. Typically, referral customers are happier customers – so you have more reference sources and case study candidates.
Need a little motivation?
Consider this: if you could double the number of referrals received, what would it mean for your business? If you could triple the number of referrals received, how much more would it mean for your business?
A little regular attention to your referral partners can go a long way. In fact, a 2X or 3X increase is a conservative forecast were you to commit to working your referral partners. In 2017, if there is only one activity that can get your full commitment, make your commitment to referrals.