Recognizing the impact of referrals and actually creating a process to continuously generate a flywheel effect are two very different things.
Being grateful for a successful referral from a happy client is great—but you could be producing a large number of new clients by treating referrals as a marketing strategy and taking a proactive approach to this channel.
In order for your process to be successful, it’s important for financial planners to build a system that is repeatable and applied to all new client relationships. Yohance Harrison, CEO & Founder of The Money Script, shares his method to the magic when it comes to bringing in more referrals from happy clients.
Here are 4 tips to turn your referral strategy into a powerful client-generating machine.
Tip #1: Set a goal
Before you begin embarking on this journey towards bringing in more referred clients, it’s important to have a target to work towards. Otherwise, you won’t be able to measure your progress. Take note of exactly what you’d like to accomplish with your program. For example, perhaps your goal is a set number of new referred clients this quarter or by the end of the year, a percentage of your clients are from referrals. This way you’ll have a clear picture of what you’re trying to accomplish and can determine if your plan is really achieving the results you’re after.
Tip #2: Ask when the time is right
The type of client who will be comfortable referring you is one who is intimately familiar with your process or service, and this comes from experience. Asking for a referral during your first interaction with a client probably won’t net you the results you’re looking for. Make sure you’re asking your clientele for a referral at the right time—once they’ve had a chance to flow through your entire process and see the unique value you provide. Develop a relationship first, and the rest will fall into place.
Tip #3: Digital storefronts
What are your storefronts that are attracting new clients to your firm? What do visitors first see when they come to your website? What story are you sharing through your messaging? Your website is just the beginning. It’s just as important to think about your social media presence. If you’re a social media whiz and use everything from LinkedIn to Clubhouse, you’ll want to ensure you have a consistent brand presence across all networks. If you’re more comfortable on a single platform, look for the social media channel that attracts your target audience and start engaging.
Tip #4: Gratitude goes a long way
Lastly, although certainly not least, don’t forget to thank your clients after every successful referral. It could be as simple as an email, or as elaborate as sending a token of your appreciation—as long as it delivers the message that you’re grateful for their support and value their relationship. The more your clients feel appreciated, the more likely they’ll be to spread the word about your firm to their networks.
At the end of the day, focusing on continued engagement is the best way to truly see more referrals. A successful referral program can make your business more profitable, but it’s only as good as the work you put into it. While it may take some legwork up front, having a process in place that generates referrals is guaranteed to pay dividends in the long run.
More so, if done correctly, repeating this process with existing clients will continue to nurture important relationships and encourage future referrals. When done right, having a referral program in place can be a real game-changer for your financial planning firm.