November 5, 2014 / Melissa Faudree

Do you need more customers for your business? The best way your business can boost customer growth is by word of mouth. If people are talking about your business to others, they are more likely to use your service. How often have you listened to someone you know that had great things to say about a business and followed through? We take into consideration the opinion of people we know and trust. One way to build your clientele is by customer referrals.

Don’t have a customer referral program? Don’t worry. Here are some tips for beginning your customer referral program.

Man looking at watchWhen is the best time?

Finding the right time to ask your customers for a referral can be tricky. You don’t want to ask a new customer. So who do you ask? You can either wait until you’ve developed a relationship with this new customer or find a customer who you already have relationship with. You want to make sure you’ve selected someone that is familiar with your products and services. They understand your company and brand. Experience is key. But when is the best time to ask? The best time to ask for referrals is right after your customer has complimented your work. This is when you can sneak in your referral. Asking for a referral will feel much like selling. You can casually explain that you are looking for customer growth and ask if they know of someone who might be a great fit for your company.

Giftbox ribbonIncentives

Incentives are a great motivator for customer growth. For many businesses, incentives are what truly drive growth. You can create a referral program where both the person who referred your business and the referral are rewarded. When you are thinking of rewards for your referral program, you don’t need to give too much away. You might consider offering a gift card or discount on a product/service. Whatever incentive you offer, it is important to make sure it is something that holds value and fits your type of business. Once your program has taken off, continue to monitor and track which incentive generates the most interest. There is nothing wrong with testing different incentives to see which one works the best. The goal is to use these rewards as a way for more customers to be motivated to spread the word about your business.

Thank You CardThank You

Don’t forget to thank your referral after it has been successfully completed. Thank you’s are customary in the business world but it could help boost and maintain relationships with your customers. It is important to send your thanks in a timely manner. Don’t take too long to send your appreciation. The thank you could be in a variety of forms such as an email, handwritten letter, or even another gift. Remember, you never know when someone could refer your business again.

A customer referral program is just one way to boost your clientele. If people are enthusiasts for your brand, they are more likely to refer and discuss your services with people they know.

How often do you ask for client referrals? What is your process?