4 Methods to Collect Oodles of Referrals for Your Business
- BY Jaspreet Kaur
Feature Writer, BusinessEx
- Aug 29,2020
- 18 Mins Read
In modern times, businesses have begun using the latest marketing tools. These marketing tools are not only effective but costly as well, thereby, increasing companies' reliance on such marketing products. While increasingly using the digital marketing tools, organisations fail to realise the importance of traditional inexpensive marketing tools. Referrals are one of the cost-effective modes of marketing that is prevalent right now.
Referrals are essentially recommendations that a satisfied customer gives to others. In order to get referrals, a company has to build trust among the customers and begin valuing such customers. It has to stimulate clients to recommend organisation to other potential customers in the market.
According to Nielsen's survey, Word-of-mouth recommendations from friends and family, often referred to as earned advertising, are still the most influential, as 84 percent of global respondents across 58 countries to the Nielsen online survey said this source was the most trustworthy.
The report also stated that trust in advertising on branded websites increased 9 percentage points to 69 per cent in 2013 as the second most trusted format, a jump from fourth-place ranking in 2007. Sixty eight per cent of survey respondents indicated that they trust consumer opinions posted online, which ranked third in 2013, up 7 per cent from 2007.
As referrals play a crucial role in the business, here are some methods that the entrepreneurs can use to garner referrals and increase their nexus of customers.
1. Improve the Customer Service
Offering seamless experience to the customers, in turn, increasing customers' satisfaction and loyalty toward the brand. This also gives rise to the referrals wherein new customers will knock on doors of the company.
For becoming an A-grade company, the organisation has to focus on services or products where it holds specialisation. While specialising in the services, the company should not overlook customer experience. An improved customer experience not only resolves customers’ problems but also engenders trust amid them. Offering an enhanced customer experience can certainly increase earning and customers.
The organisation has to operate skillfully, prioritising customers first and trying to increase customers' experience every single day. In this way, referrals will accelerate the business without implementing any major marketing strategy.
2. Forming a Referral Program
The firm can essentially engender referrals from the present customer base and convert them into leads. Without making an announcement or creating a referral program, customers would not know whether the company wants referrals or not. Happy and satisfied clientele would like to recommend a good company to their friends and colleagues. By forming a referral program, the customers will not recommend the company but also receive some benefits. Thus, referral programs create a two-fold effect.
In the referral program, companies can offer various incentives to the customer like a 20 per cent discount or waving off a month’s subscription fee. While offering incentives, the company should track referral so that they can thank customers and also, make sure that incentives have been received by customers. To do this, the company can introspect new customers as to how they know about it and jot down names of the customers who have referred them. To give a personalised touch, the entrepreneur can send a hand-written thank you note to the customers.
3. Ask Clients
If the company does not want to create a referral program, then it can directly ask customers for recommendations. While attending the customers whether in-person or on call, sales professionals can request customers for recommendation. By doing so, the company will showcase the importance it gives to the customers' reviews.
Many clientele like the gesture when the company values their recommendation. This can be enhanced by offering a stellar customer experience. If customers like services and products of the firm, it is obvious that they would not hesitate in helping the firm. Besides approaching the present customer base, the company can reach the past clients as well. It can connect with them and enquire if anyone in their connection is looking for services that the company offers. Many past clientele will straightaway refer to the company in the process. By not asking them, the company would not know if it can get additional referrals without creating a referral program. In this way, there are various ways that can be employed to garner referrals.
4. Develop Customer Rapports
Working on customer relationships is extremely important in the long run. A business cannot survive more than 2 years if it does not build a wide customer nexus. As new customers come in, sales professionals have to ensure that they build a connection with new ones and stick them to the brand. Once the new customers turn into loyal customers, then they can be asked to bring their closed ones into the company's nexus too.
Building a healthy rapport is essential for customers as well as companies. The two-sided rapport increases communication between two parties. At the same time, customers do not hesitate to share honest feedback with the company. Such types of relationships thrive in the future. The company can form a cult around its brand with the help of loyal customers. Harley Davidson is one such brand that has grown through a cult.
The above-mentioned suggestions help garner an enormous amount of referrals. Any company despite its size can employ these steps to target an apt audience and in turn, surge the customer base. During the pandemic, existing customers are pillars of the firm. They not only stay loyal to the brand but bring new customers through word of mouth marketing. As they share their experience with others, people start developing interest in a particular company. Various small scale businesses use this concept and create their marks in the market.
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