I get a lot of questions about how to generate quality referrals — it’s because a large part of my own business has been built through referrals.
In this world of constant online chatter, I find it so valuable to know how to create powerful referrals — they are almost always the most ideal prospects.
Here are some of my favorite questions (& answers) to help you create amazing referrals for your business!
Q: Do you need a huge community of followers in order to be able to generate referrals in your business?
A: Absolutely not! While it’s wonderful to have a huge community of followers, it’s definitely not necessary. What’s most important to be able to begin to generate powerful referrals is to have relationships with people who know and appreciate you – those people can be your clients, your colleagues, your friends, your old schoolmates, your family, or anyone else you know. You start your first round of referral campaigns there, and through that the contacts and followers grow.
Q: What is the proper etiquette when asking for a referral?
A: Asking for referrals is an art unto itself, with many factors and possibilities.
But for now, I’ll share that one of the most IMPORTANT pieces of etiquette when asking for a referral is that you keep it personal and intimate. Don’t use formal business language when asking for a referral and don’t email hundreds of people at a time. The more personal and intimate you can be when inviting folks to refer you, the more effective your invitation will be.
Q: Whenever I think about asking clients for referrals, I get a stomach ache – it feels icky and sales-y and desperate to ask for business. What do you think about that?
A: I cannot tell you how many times I have heard that exact fear come up (in fact, years ago, I used to feel it myself!). And it’s true – if you feel icky about asking for referrals, one of two things will happen: 1) You will never ask for them or 2) You’ll force yourself to ask, but it will feel misaligned and it won’t come off as powerful or inviting to the person you’re asking…and they probably won’t make the referral.
That’s why it’s vital to shift into a Referral Mindset and to really learn how to claim your value. When you do both of these things, everything changes: you feel confident about your services & products, you feel excited to ask connections for referrals, and the people you ask join in your excitement about your work and communicate it to others.
Q: I’ve heard that if someone sends you a referral and they buy from you, you need to then send the referrer a cash kick-back. Is that true?
A: So glad you asked, and the answer is a definitive: NOPE! What is important is that you always, always, always thank your referrer in a personal way, but the thank you does not need to be cash at all!