How to Create a Referral Program to Grow Your Client Base
Client retention is a necessary strategy for every firm, next to acquisition, of course. More clients simply mean more money for your firm. Marketing studies cited that more than 90% of consumers base their buying decision based on recommendations. And this should be a focus for client acquisition.
Word of mouth is more effective than any other marketing methods. Nothing beats the power of a personal recommendation. Referrals will drive more clients to your firm. The unreserved recommendation from someone else is an instant trust builder and you can just skip the lead nurturing process through this.
While other type of lead generation requires more work, referral requires less effort and gets clients faster to your firm.
Let’s talk about client retention first
When it comes to retention, you want to maintain the best clients. Ideally, they are the ones that buy high-margin services, they pay full price without asking you for discounts, trust your firm, don’t require extensive after-service guidance and don’t cancel contracts. You could create a firm-exclusive loyalty program to increase retention for this specific client profile.
These clients are also likely to recommend you to your next-best clients and this is why you need a referral system. The key pointers to building an effective referral system is as follows:
- Identify your ideal clients
- Educate your referral sources (existing clients, network, social groups, etc.)
- Be referable (may it be through social media, email, webforms, or phone)
- Ask for referrals
- Reward your referrers; and,
- Don’t forget to measure your referral efforts
Keeping track of your progress
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is a must-have for your firm to capture and keep useful data from your clients as well as spot opportunities presented in each situation. A CRM like Infusionsoft lets you build your referrals, track lead sources, nurture relationships, send rewards and everything needed to succeed on your referral scheme. What is more, most functionalities inside Infusionsoft are automated.
From this CRM, you can also run surveys, track responses and, send out client-triggered automated but personalised messages.
Gaining trust from fresh eyes
Referrers are everywhere. The person you market to might not need your services but they may know someone who needs a CPA. Joining finance-related local forums will also help you meet new prospects. Sponsoring events is always an effective Public Relation strategy to gain more exposure and bring in more clients.
Do not expect the person to sign up for your services on the spot when somebody referred them to you. You need to continuously nurture the relationship and that is when you need to use a CRM like Infusionsoft. Infusionsoft is the fortune in follow-up. It allows you to automatically follow up on clients through highly targeted and personalised messages. This tool helps strengthen the way you network, leads to the faster closing of deals and easily keeps track of your referral program.
Above all, be referral worthy. That means you must give exceptional services and have good testimonials from your previous clients. Referrals save you from all the costly marketing expenses while your referrers help you build your integrity. The core work always lie in making sure clients are satisfied and happy.