There are hundreds of referral systems out there. All of them revolve around asking for referrals…ASKING FOR REFERRALS DOESN’T WORK!
Not because people won’t give them to you (most won’t…I know I don’t give referrals when asked.) The real reason they don’t work is nobody asks for them, I know I won’t. It is way too uncomfortable for me and the client.
Some of the industry’s top advisors receive more than 100 referrals a year…but they don’t ask for them. The referrals they receive are given freely by their clients and the professionals they work with. How?
To a one, when asked, they credit it to the relationship they have created with their clients or referring professionals. The clients just feel the urge to constantly tell people how great they are because they don’t like their adviser…they love him or her. They rant about them. They brag about them. They want to introduce them to everyone they know!
I know all of our clients like us or they wouldn’t be working with us, but how many of our clients love us so much they feel the need to tell everyone about us as some people may do about a fantastic new restaurant they’ve tried or movie they’ve seen?
I think most advisers would find those kind of clients quite rare and yet some advisers have legions of those people. How did they create these raving fans?
Study after study, research after research has shown that the one thing that creates raving fans is contact…not contact about financial matters but contact on how much you care. To create raving clients and referrals you need to contact people 2 or 3 times a month.
You may be thinking, “Are you crazy! 2 or 3 times a month? They don’t want to be contacted 2 or 3 times a month!”
You are right and wrong.
Right, they don’t want you calling and bugging them about their money 2 or 3 times a month.
Wrong, they love to be contacted on a personal basis two or three times a month. What do I mean about personal. Simply think about how you do it with friends and family…after all, don’t you want them to consider you as part of their circle of friends and family?
Here are some ideas for those of you that don’t have friends and family and therefore don’t understand how those of us that do, find so many:
- An emailed joke, funny story or weird news story
- A phone call just to say hi
- Handwritten birthday cards, holiday cards and anniversary cards
- A client party—PARTY…fun only! No business mentioned
- A client outing to a minor league baseball game or gardening center
- A client focus group asking for their opinions
- A call after a big storm checking in with them to make sure they are all right
- Etc. etc. etc.
If you do these types of things, you will have more referrals then you ever dreamed of without asking once.