Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Value of the Referral

Referrals from colleagues, clients and friends are extremely valuable to my business. In fact, referrals are one of my top two sources of new business. Approximately 90% of the referrals that contact me, hire me.

To keep those priceless referrals coming, I do the following:

1) I ask each prospect how they found out about me (web, referral, business directory, etc.), so I know where to concentrate my marketing efforts.

2) I personally thank each person who gives me a referral. Sometimes it is a handwritten thank you note or a personal phone call, and other times I give the referrer a gift or gift card, or treat them to lunch, to thank them for thinking of me.

3) To encourage referrals from my existing clients, I include a referral offer in my business agreement. In exchange for every referral who hires me, I'll give two free hours of my services to that client. This provides them with a tangible, quantifiable reason to refer me to others.

4) I refer my favorite professionals (graphic designers, editors, printers, etc.) to colleagues, so they know I'm looking out for their businesses too. Because I often partner with referral sources on projects, these referrals benefit me as well. I refer professionals who are good at what they do and whom I enjoy working with.

What can you do to grow your referrals today?

Virtually Yourz,
Dana Blozis

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