People who refer someone to you are your greatest advocates. When you cultivate happy customers, you create an army of salespeople working for you. But how do you ask for referrals? Is there a certain time in the client lifecycle that’s the best to ask? How do you let a referral source know they’re appreciated? Jame Crosbie answers these questions—and much more—in the first episode of our new series on referral selling. Don’t miss it!
Jamie points out that people don’t usually ask for referrals at the right time. You can’t ask for a referral until you’ve proven the value of your product or service. The other mistake is not asking for a specific referral. You can’t say, “If I can help anyone else, just let me know.”
Instead, identify your ideal client profile and ask them if there’s anyone else in their organization or network that you can add value for. The last mistake Jamie often sees is that salespeople neglect to let their clients know that they appreciate their referral. That’s why Jamie advocates for a referral fee program.
You have to be a thought leader in the space where the people you’re trying to attract live. That lends you credibility. It might be posting blogs on LinkedIn or sharing marketplace data related to your industry or field. Maybe you’re a guest on a podcast. But you have to share things so they see you as a leader in your space.
Start with a strategy: Develop relationships with people who also seek out your ideal client. Put together a referral program, fee structure, and strategically go after those relationships as if they were a client for you. They become part of your sales team.
Jamie likes to share testimonials and case studies with clients. She’ll then say something like “I’d love to add value like this to your network as well.” You must always make sure the conversation is geared toward adding value for their business.
In every piece of positive communication, ask these questions:
Always ask for the opportunity to make a bigger impact. Identify who has a similar client profile and get a touchpoint and strategy in place.
Secondly, stay in communication with your clients but avoid making every conversation about asking for a referral.
86% of Jamie’s business is from referrals. It’s significant. But she’s well aware that it takes time to build referral-based sales. But Jamie also looks at client growth. Why? Your ICP might be a regional sales manager. That person’s organization may have 10+ other regional managers all working through different circumstances. Maybe one of them is about to be promoted. How could you impact them or their growth?
What are Jamie’s top 3 referral selling dos and don’ts? Why is offering value her #1 priority? Listen to the whole episode to learn more!
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