Getting More Referrals by Seizing the Moment!

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Are you asking your customers and clients for referrals?

I know you've heard this a million times but are you doing it?

Think of it this way. Every dollar you don't have to spend on marketing and promotion can be reinvested in other areas of your business or go straight to the bottom line to help you achieve your financial goals!

Marketing by asking for referrals is not only easy; it doesn't cost you a single penny. You can be pretty sure that who you're being referred to will be far more willing to find out what solutions you provide to solve their problems than prospects you get as a result of advertising, cold calling or virtually any other sales or marketing tool you use. You're also pretty much guaranteed a higher closing ratio.

No cost + better response + higher conversion rate = no brainer!

So why aren't you working this for all it's worth?

Are you afraid of offending a customer or contact? Is it a fear of rejection? Do you think you might be imposing on a relationship?

I like and use what I call the "seize the moment" approach and use this based on the type and style of relationship that I've built with a client.

For example, I had just come up with a pretty good idea that would allow one of my clients to repurpose a small investment across many different uses at no extra cost. "What a terrific idea" he said, "I guess that's why they pay you the big bucks"

After we had a laugh about the fact that he wasn't in fact paying me "big bucks", I seized the moment and said "But if you know anyone with "big bucks" that could benefit from my services the way that you have, then I'd appreciate the referral and you know that I won't let you or them down". I got my referral - and more since.

In another case, my client and I had pretty much completed the scope of work we'd agreed too when he asked me if I could re-write his (very badly put together) website. The business was in start up mode and I knew that cash was tight. So I seized the moment by saying "Of course I can help you with that but I know that things are a bit difficult right now so I won't charge you for this - instead I need three referrals from you over the next month". He agreed and I got two that month and another the following month.

With a third client we were working on a leadership strategy that involved, amongst other approaches, the writing of Case Studies and acquiring client testimonials. I was coaching her in terms of how to approach her clients for testimonials and suggested that we role-play.

We did and she gave me a glowing testimonial. I then reminded her that there was probably no better time to "seize the moment" and ask if her client knew someone else that might benefit from her services. She got the point and I got a referral.

This less formal, more casual and opportunistic approach also saves you from the "sweaty palms gotta pluck up the courage, fear of rejection" syndrome approach we touched on earlier.

Don't be shy about asking for referrals. Your customers and clients will gladly give you referrals because you've proven yourself and have earned them.

So "seize the moment", strike while the iron's hot and feel good about asking because someone giving you a referral is also giving you one of the highest compliments you can receive!

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Martin Povey has 1 articles online

Martin Povey owns buildingyourbusiness.ca and is a business and marketing coach who helps entrepreneurs and small businesses that need focus direction and creative solutions to build their business and achieve their goals. He can be contacted at: martin@buildingyourbusiness.ca or 403-529-9259 or visit http://www.buildingyourbusiness.ca/

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Getting More Referrals by Seizing the Moment!

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This article was published on 2010/03/26