Customer referrals are the oldest and most prolific way of generating business. But even today it is a severely under-utilized method of generating high-quality leads in selling.
Why are customer referrals not used well to grow sales?
1. Maybe people are not aware of the power of referral
2. They may not know the process of asking a referral
3. They don’t know when to ask for a referral
4. They may be too much focused on popular ways of lead generation like facebook / google ads or cold calling.
5. They may not feel confident about the satisfaction or happiness that their customers derive by using their products or services.
So let us think about ….
So, what makes customers motivated to refer to your products or services?
First, they need to feel a certain level of trust in you. They need to believe that their friends will be benefited from your services. Last but not least, they need to feel that their image will not take a hit because of the referral. Ideally, they should feel confident about this referral generating more goodwill and respect in their social circles!
Assuming that all of these things are going to be take care of, the major question that arises is:
When should you be asking for a referral in your sales process?
Collin Cadmus points out these “4 Times” in the sales cycle when you can ask for referrals:
1. When giving discounts
2. When receiving thanks
3. When rapport is strong
4. When your customer is highly engaged
He goes on to add, “If referrals aren’t a major part of your sales game, you’re playing it all wrong.”
Which 8 steps can help you create environment for rapid growth in referrals?
1. Building a community for your brand. Building great communities as your GTM strategy has a ton of benefits mainly for the word of mouth it creates on social platforms.
2. Your referral strategy should be as well crafted as your cold outreach. It is worth doing some research on how to set your referral process.
3. It should be baked into your discovery process and followed up on during one of those moments.
Ask “who did you hear about this from?” Or simple “who uses something similar?” followed up by, “Who do you think might need something similar?”
4. Have your teamwork off NPS scores. Look at anyone that gave us a 9 or 10 since they’re pretty much-raving fans. Best ones to ask for referrals from.
5. Here is an extreme measure, which can be applied very carefully without challenging your customer.
At the end of a sale (when rapport is strong) ask:”Are you a selfish person?”The client will obviously reply: “Hell no”Going for the referral: “Then you must know someone else who needs to benefit from this product.”
Using the right playful tone and expressions are critical for this to work.
6. While making the sale, especially with the discount-seeking client you can say – “If I can get you that 25% discount do you think you could introduce me to two of your friends who may also be a good fit?” Simple as that.
7. Bake it into your sales process. Make referrals/recommendations/testimonials a “condition of sale” when closing new business. Most clients are willing (and gracious) to refer business provided that the service delivered exceeds their expectations.
8. Always remember, “Best time to ask for something is when giving something!”