Referral Marketing Means Referrals For Life
It's like winning the lottery for your business ...
Posted on: 13/07/2016 By: Jacky Sherman
What's in it for you to grow your business by referrals? It's summed up in the name of the Referral Institute flagship programme, Referrals for Life®. What does that mean? When you think about it, it is quite an ambiguous phrase ...
Build your referral marketing community to live your life the way you want to!
copyright: logoboom / 123rf stock photo
Does it mean it gives you life in the same way that food gives life? Does it mean it gives you a life as against merely an existence? Or does it mean it gives you a continuous flow of customers for the whole of your life?
If you're running your own business you probably want to achieve all three of those goals. So how can referral marketing help you with that?
Feed your business (and your family)
Customers are the food in your business. Without them, your business will starve to death and without your business, you will have to find another way of feeding yourself and your family.
Gaining business by referrals is a highly effective way of generating customers. Unlike most other forms of marketing, it is about farming rather than being a hunter/gathering. And let's face it, whilst for some hunting or blackberrying along the footpaths may be fun, not many of us would like to feed the family that way.
Referral marketing is about sowing seeds in your relationships, nurturing them and then harvesting results. It is also a perennial crop that you can harvest time and time again. Whilst you will still want to add to your network once you've developed some good relationships, you don't have to go out and find new ones on a continuous basis to generate customers.
Add meaning to your life
Chances are, you started your own business with a passion for the services or products that you offer. Whether you were pushed through redundancy, needed to increased flexibility or just decided you couldn't face working for others any longer, you are driven by more than just earning a living.
Let's face it, most of us find working for ourselves requires a lot more hours than we anticipated. It's all too easy to find you've jumped out of the corporate rat race and onto a treadmill of chasing customers whilst trying to deliver the service as well. Where's the work/life balance now?
Referral marketing, once you've set it up can release your time. Whilst you're delivering what you love to do, your referral partners are introducing you to exactly the type of people who want your services and who you want to work with.
What's more, you find yourself spending your time with like-minded people who share your sense of purpose and become more than just a source of business. Referral relationships turn into great friendships too.
Running your own business becomes a way of life and the term life/work balance becomes irrelevant. You're just doing what you want to do in life.
Win the lottery!
If you're like most small business owners, you probably don't have a vision to sell your business for millions of pounds and go retire to your own island. In my experience, most people just want to earn more than they earned when employed and build something of value to sell or pass onto their children. If this is you then your most valuable asset is probably your customer and contact list.
However the biggest shock when you first come out of employment is usually that the paycheck doesn't automatically drop into your bank each month. Suddenly you understand what the term cashflow really means. When I'm talking to the owners of all sorts of businesses, most of them crave the security of retained clients and a residual income so they know the monthly bills can be paid.
Now, referrals cannot guarantee a residual income, you need to have developed a service that offers that. What it does is build a community of loyal people who can refer you on a regular basis. Unlike just networking in the sense of turning up for breakfast once a month, it is about a systematic business process that builds your referral community so you get consistent and predictable referrals that you can rely on.
And because you're in control that's much more likely to happen than picking the winning lottery scratch card of £100,000 a year for life!
So this week my Referral Tip for you is to build your referral community to become the way you do business and live your life.
Surround yourself with people who can refer you to your ideal customers.
Build deep productive relationships with them.
Educate them on how to refer you.
Reciprocate and become an essential part of their referrals for life.
As a result, you will have the customers who you want to work with, spend your time with people you like and who share your sense of purpose and have the security of seeing regular income drop into your bank every month.
Want some help with this? Why not have a conversation with me by calling 07970 638857 or clicking here to ping over an email.
Until next time ...
More about Jacky Sherman ...
I help people build and maintain productive working relationships both with their work colleagues and with a wider network to win more business. I do this by combining my skills in coaching, mediation and training with my extensive experience in senior management.
What I love most about my work is when my clients get those â€œahaâ€ moments because I know they have seen for themselves the way that they want to move forward. Then they will achieve their ambitions.
Helping people who are having challenges with their working relationships gives me enormous pleasure. It was my privilege when working in health care to see how people working together can make the impossible seem easy and accomplish miracles as a result.
So helping people build or restore strong relationship with their colleagues makes even the hardest work easier, alleviates distress for the individual and reduces problems for the whole organisation.
In all this work trust is an essential ingredient to winning business so most of my work comes through referrals. Referrals come through strong business relationships so it was a natural extension for me to work with Ascentiv and train others in how to get consistent and predictable referrals from their network.
What a fantastic way to earn a living!
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