Greatly underestimated and often unacknowledged is the power of word-of-mouth. Word-of-mouth referrals play a large role in bringing your firm new business leads. You may ask, why?
People trust their peers and friends. Harnessing the power of trust is valuable to both your business and brand. It also gives you a head start closing a sales lead. While reviews and testimonials reinforcing client trust are beneficial, your firm really can’t beat the power of direct referrals in terms of quality.
Here are some word-of-mouth marketing tips to help you generate client referrals:
- Ask clients for referrals: Let’s address concerns about awkward situations up front. It doesn’t have to be an uncomfortable situation if your wording and timing are right. With an upbeat tone, incorporate a call to action in email exchanges or invoices. Develop customer incentives or a loyalty program - provide details on your website and social media channels so they know how to participate. Launch an email campaign that rewards clients who provide referrals. It is important to keep your client’s happy and loyal.
- Be a resource: Take charge and provide valuable knowledge through social media channels. Share expert information on your blog, and provide downloadable premium content, and how-to videos. By taking this approach, you will establish trust and demonstrate your credentials as an expert in your field. Developing keyword rich content is a way to generate organic referrals, i.e. these leads are brought to your door through keyword searches. However, SEO should not be the alpha and omega.
- Reward current clients and new referrals: Offer a discount on the referral’s first purchase; you’ll add to the social capital the referrer enjoys. This exchange allows you to establish rapport with clients, ensuring repeat business and continued referrals.
- Create evangelists on social media: Social media channels amplify the reach of a testimonial or good review. Create a special landing page for referrals. Ask how the prospect found you to nurture further engagement. Correspond with those who rate you highly and build upon what seems to be working.
- Test and track results: Find out which referral programs produce new, high-value clients for you. If some methods aren’t performing, cut them out. If most referrals are coming from just a few existing clients, make sure they become VIPs. Such a process may seem like trial and error at first, but you’ll soon discover a rhythm.
For more word-of-mouth marketing and sales techniques, contact Colosi Marketing.