5 Methods to Attract Clients via Referral Marketing by @VizionsCon

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by DeKesha Williams | Featured Contributor
Referral Marketing
 
Referral marketing (word-of-mouth) is considered one of the most effective marketing strategies in the business industry.  We’ve heard the phrase “people purchase from people they know, like and trust.”  Odds are friends & family will have a greater chance at selling your service and products better than you will.  
 
Here are 5 sure ways to make Client Attraction a “walk in the park”:
 
1. Create a habit.
Make it a habit to ask each customer to recommend someone they feel could benefit from your product/services.  Create a section on proposals/invoices so that it becomes a part of the sales process.
 
2. Brand Ambassadors
When clients are singing your praises, they have officially become Brand Ambassadors.  A Brand Ambassadors are external agents promoting your brand with the intentions to boost sales and increase brand awareness.
 
3. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing has the same concept of brand ambassadors.  The only exception is that affiliates actually receive a percentage of sales generated from their efforts.
 
4. Incentives
Everyone loves to receive gifts and not just for birthday or holidays.  Implement a program that will reward your customer each time a sale is generated from their personal referrals.  Send a gift card at the close of each sale.
 
5. Biggest Missed Opportunity
Capitalize off current & previous clients. Make your clients customers for life. You have to give them directions of what their next step should be whether its telling 3 friends of their experience and sharing their contact information. This is a referral marketing strategy that always seem to get underutilized in the sales industry.
 

These are 5 tried and true methods that I highly recommend to not only become a part of your process but a habit.  Let me quickly tell you about Robert.

  • Robert  didn’t have a Customer Relations Management system; however, he had 11 notebooks filled with customer information and dimensions for upcoming projects.  These notebooks were the heart of his business because they included every customer that he’d ever worked with over the past 14 years.  Within 45 days we converted 5 notebooks into an Excel worksheet that included all pertinent customer information.   The team also called each individual to conduct a customer satisfaction survey but also to increase referrals.  Robert received 3 calls from previous contractors and 2 referrals from previous customer that resulted in $50,000 contracts in December, which has previously been slow months for his business.

Referral marketing is not only a strategy but a process of building relationships.  Customers return when they have relationships because they feel a sense of loyalty to you and the brand.  Don’t overcomplicate the process of client attraction and delegate some of that work to your best clients.
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DeKesha C. Williams – Business Strategist, Vizions Consulting, Richmond, VA
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I have over 17  years of experience in retail management working for organizations such as Hecht’s, Ann Taylor Loft and FootAction USA.  I received a B.A. degree in Fashion Merchandising in 1999 and recently receive a M.B.A in Finance in 2010.  For the last 4.5 years I’ve operated 13 private photography studios from Atlanta, GA to Columbia, MD and have been responsible for managing 60+ employees as a District Manager. During this time I was given the opportunity to open 6 of the 13 stores within  my first two years with the company , which included hiring, staffing and training all employees.

My skills included, but were not limited to fashion merchandising with companies such as Macys and Ann Taylor Loft. Participating in floor sets and marketing responsibilities as both manager and District Manager as well as creating sales projections and action plans for stores across 5 states for more than 3 years.

It was approximately 7 years ago that I participated in a “Spiritual Gifts” class at church and it was there that I realized that God had given me specific talents regarding administration, leadership with a “knack for motivating individuals through faith and wisdom. Although God  had revealed my talents to me, I was not prepared to embrace them. Thus I was the servant who dug a hole and buried his treasure/talent. Matt 25:14

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One Reply to “5 Methods to Attract Clients via Referral Marketing by @VizionsCon”

  1. Vincent Cassar

    great post. According to Nielsen, people trust recommendations from friends and family 92% of the time and more than all other forms of marketing. By implementing a referral component in your sales process, you will get more customers. Period. I have written a blog entry on referral marketing and I am explaining one easy system any business can implement to attract more referrals. http://blog.keeping.com/referral-marketing/

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