If you want to get more referrals, you have to make yourself worth referring. You, your practice, and the value you deliver need to be worth talking about. This doesn’t happen by chance.
Think about the last time you recommended:
- Professional services
Was your recommendation chosen randomly, or was there a reason behind it?
Too often, professionals cross their fingers, hoping to get referrals. Or they practically beg clients to “Give me the names and numbers of 3 people you know who can use my services…”
It doesn’t have to be this way. It shouldn’t be this way.
How are you going to increase the number of referrals you receive? Are you going to be acting on a set of guiding principles, or are you just going to be hoping referrals come your way?
Why do people send referrals?
Recommending or referring involves sharing. People recommend professional services that affect them positively.
If something is pleasant, surprising, valuable, inspiring, or useful to them, they are likely to share it with friends and family.
Clients won’t share mediocrity.
Make the Commitment
It’s easy to get overwhelmed thinking about all the changes you can make to be of greater service and value to your clients. This can be much easier if you align yourself with hidden opportunities throughout your day-to-day practices to make an impact on clients.
Inspire or surprise them. “The key to a woman’s heart,” says Sean Connery’s character in the film Finding Forrester, “is an unexpected gift at an unexpected time.” The same can work for making an impact on a client. Set up reminders for yourself throughout the year to do something special.
It can be as simple as sending a birthday or anniversary gift. It’s a nice touch, one that will not go unnoticed. In fact, it’s not uncommon for advisors to remember important dates that friends or family members forget about. Here are more suggestions.
Improve their lives. Life happens. Events–good and bad–will transpire throughout your relationship with your client. Acknowledging these moments and being present with them can strengthen your bond. The reasons clients come to you for help can be emotionally charged. Remember this: You have the power to affect how your clients feel–about you, themselves, and the future.
Whether you’re helping your clients cope in times of grief, assisting them with shredding unnecessary paperwork, or providing them with a relaxing evening at a monthly client event, what you do for clients goes beyond dealing with wealth or finances.
Read The Financial Advisor in the Mirror for an insightful look at how clients see you.
Provide a solution. You are an expert. As an expert, you have a unique perspective. You have access to knowledge your clients want to benefit from. Continue to be their go-to resource.
When you hold events, meetings, and annual reviews, you’re not doing this for yourself. You’re doing it for them. The same goes for offering whitepapers, recording videos, sending out email newsletters, or publishing blog posts. These items need to provide solutions to problems and worries your clients have.
When it comes to everything mentioned above, you can’t perform these actions with the intent of getting more referrals. You do them to provide value.
Referrals are merely a byproduct of the thoughtful planning and execution of valuable service.
With this shift in mindset, “What can I do to get more referrals?” turns into “How can I be of greater value? How can I cultivate a deeper relationship?”
Be mindful of this and you will spot more opportunities. Good results will follow. You will see the process in a whole new way.