The Referable Seven

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The Referable Seven outlines and describes the seven universal factors/reasons why people refer business and professional to others. It provides case examples and questions to help you think of ways you can get more referrals now.

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The Referable Seven

  1. 1. The Referable Seven Why And When A Referral Happens (or “How to get people to introduce you to those they know and like!”) -By Reuben Rail
  2. 2. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 2 “ Referrals aren't given easily. If you don't take the time to establish credibility, you're not going to get the referral. People have to get to know you. They have to feel comfortable with who you are and what you do. Dr. Ivan Misner Founder and Chairman of BNI ”
  3. 3. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 3 2009 by Reuben Rail Copyright holder is licensing this under the Creative Commons License, Attribution 3.0. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/ Please feel free to post this on your blog or email it to whomever you believe would benefit from reading it. Thank you. www.ReferralArchitects.com
  4. 4. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 4 What’s Inside Imagine… Pg. 5 Why Does A Referral Happen? Pg. 6 Know, Like, and Trust Pg. 8 Show Your Smarts Pg. 11 Hero/Helper Pg. 14 The Big “I” Pg. 17 Community Pg. 20 WOW Them Pg. 24 Rewards + Gifts Pg. 27 What To Do Now? Pg. 31 Image Credits Pg. 32 End Page Pg. 33
  5. 5. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 5 Imagine that you have just come from getting a massage and you are now very relaxed. The Masseuse did a great job, all your aches are gone, and any tension you had has just drained out of your body. As you are walking down the street to a nice local café you like you see a friend of yours and he looks really tense. After talking for a bit, you suggest that he go and see your masseuse. He thanks you and heads on his way. Now, as you are leaving the café some while later you notice your friend strolling towards you. He looks a bit different than earlier and when you stop to talk again he lets you know he took you up on your advice, and went and got a massage…and he feels great! He’s relaxed, just like you, and he says he is now in a better mood. He thanks you and goes on about his way. So how now do you feel? Chances are you feel good because you gave advice/information to someone and it helped them out. It never would’ve happened with you. And now chances are you will probably do it again because who doesn’t want to feel good?
  6. 6. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 6 Why Does A Referral Happen? People Like to Feel Good: Simple, isn’t it? Some people might say “That’s it?”, but they would be overlooking the real world uses of this concept. For those who have curiosity to learn more let’s look at that again. People Like To Feel Good. Almost too simple, I know, but that is the essence of great referrals. Why would anyone talk about anything that didn’t make them feel good…unless to complain. And that’s not the type of conversations you want about your business, right? So it comes back to simplicity. The top and most pure motivation for a client or someone you know to provide you with a referral is when they get the opportunity to look and feel good, and most often to someone they know and like.
  7. 7. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 7 While there are some other reasons and important pre-requisites we’ll cover, if you follow and leverage this main fact, that a referral happens when someone feels good, then you will be miles ahead of the game. Before we cover some of those other reasons we have to address the foundational building blocks for a referable relationship – with the key word being relationship. In order for someone to really get a great referral three key things must happen. Read on to find out more…
  8. 8. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 8 KNOW, LIKE, And TRUST Number one – before any referral relationship can take happen these three pillars must be in place. Think of them as the three corner stones that you are going to build your Referral Pyramid upon. Without these three you will fail. Know: clients, customers, and people get to know you in a variety of ways. They get to know you from personal interactions and events. They get to know you through your business’ brand, and your marketing materials. They get to know you through your company’s website and blogging that you do. Ask yourself, what are they finding out? Like: There has been a lot of books written on this topic, more than I will cover here. Needless to say, if you’re clients don’t like you, fat chance of them referring you to others. Be yourself. Be authentically you. Your real clients will respond. Trust: The one thing that changes everything. If people don’t trust you, then you’re sunk. Period. What can you do to be undeniably real?
  9. 9. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 9 Quick Examples: - A financial planner makes it a point to stay in touch with all of his past clients, friends, family, and associates. He sends everyone Birthday cards, Holiday cards, and even calls them to check in and see how they are doing and if they need anything. Plus, he keeps notes on their personal hobbies and interests so he can surprise them with occasional gifts or articles of interest that he finds online. - A babysitting service is know for their personal branded touch in how they treat their clients. Everyone who hires them can choose from their personal movie library something to watch for the night. Also, they have a children’s book library as well so the kids can have a bedtime story. Lastly, the babysitting service has struck up an alliance with a local pizzeria, and parents can choose to order dinner at 20% off the normal price if they choose to do so.
  10. 10. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 10 Referral Making Question: “What can I say, do, and give to my clients that best represents myself as a person and a business professional so they can know, like, and trust me?” Write Some Ideas Here 1. __________________________ 2. __________________________ 3. __________________________
  11. 11. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 11 Show Your Smarts Do you remember how excited you were when you knew the answer in class? When you would almost fall out of your seat trying to raise your hand to the ceiling so the teacher would call on you and you could tell everyone the right answer? Well… People like to feel smart. As a business owner, you might consider looking for opportunities to make your clients feel smart. And I am not talking about just a feeling – really educate them on aspects that involve your business so they can talk confidently with people they know. Because people like to talk about what they know – help them know interesting and valuable knowledge about your business.
  12. 12. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 12 Quick Example: - A stockbroker takes some time to educate her clients and keep them abreast of what is really going on in the market. Later that week, around a water cooler conversation, that client’s co-workers state some news they heard about the stock market and what they think is going on. Her client steps in and shares what he knows to be really going on. Everyone asks how he knows, and he Confidently lets them know he was just talking with his stockbroker, and she makes sure to keep him in the know. * She might also have created a free report, like “The 12 Biggest Mistakes Most People Make When Investing in Today’s Market and How to Avoid Them”, and let her client know he can call her to get a copy to give to friends that are interested in knowing more. This will help him look important again and Provide a lead opportunity for the stockbroker.
  13. 13. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 13 Referral Making Question: “What can I tell my clients about my business that will help them look smart to those they know?” Write Some Ideas Here 1. __________________________ 2. __________________________ 3. __________________________
  14. 14. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 14 Hero/Helper Everyone Likes To Be The Hero It’s in our nature. Ever since we were kids we would imagine ourselves in grand adventures and stories – being the key figure who ends up saving the day or helping everything to turn out great (with everyone liking you of course). Help your clients help those they know and like. They’ll be the hero and solve their friend’s problem, and they will remember that you did so (and when the solution that they give to their friend has your contact info on it they will connect the dots). Good begets good. Help your clients solve others problems and it will come back around to you many times over.
  15. 15. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 15 Quick Examples: - A tax specialist makes it a point to show his clients how they can help their friends and family save money each and every year on their taxes. He points out tax breaks on college tuition, business expenses, and much more. The next time his clients are out talking with those they know they are looking for ways to save money for others, and be a hero in the process. - A babysitter service gives their clients special “Date Night” tickets that they can give to their friends and family when they want a night off without the kids. With these tickets, the next time their client asks a friend if they want to go out to a late movie that Friday, and they say “We can’t find a sitter for the kids,” that client can help them out by providing a one time free pass for a great night out. Which of course makes the babysitting service look really good and most likely secures a new client for the next date night.
  16. 16. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 16 Referral Making Question: “How can I help my clients solve others’ problems – to be the hero to their friends, family, and co-workers? Write Some Examples Here 1. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
  17. 17. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 17 The Big “I”: „ Because I’m Important Lights. Camera. Action. The thrill of the limelight is attractive to many of us. Not that we are all craving everybody’s attention, but it does feel good to be in the spotlight once in a while and to have those you know think of you as somebody important. Help your clients shine by singling them out for personal characteristics, admirable behavior, or as a reward. Tell them how important they are to your business. Tell others how important they are to your business – and even tell them when your clients are right there. Give credit when credit is due it is honest and will make everyone happier.
  18. 18. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 18 The other areas of the Feel Good Four definitely tie into this area, and you can use them to convey importance. Are they smart? Give them a certificate and refer people to them. Are they a hero and helper? Tell stories about them and ask for their advice. Are they a social bug and like groups? Invite them to parties, tell them to brings their special friends, and even create an exclusive club for just them and other clients like them. Wouldn’t you feel important if someone did those things for you? Quick Example: - Spotlight top referring clients in your monthly electronic newsletter. - Pick up your top referring clients for lunch in a limo – which will also get everyone talking, and that’s a nice touch. - Set up a group of your clients with lessons from a golf-pro, and let them bring a buddy: that will make them feel even more important because a friend is there.
  19. 19. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 19 Referral Making Question: “What are a couple of things I can do to make my clients feel special, important, and extremely valued?” Write Some Examples Here 1. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
  20. 20. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 20 Community: So Much Better That We’re Together People like to belong. It is a desire within all of us. Everyone is looking for a group or club or party where they can feel like “…everyone knows [their] name…” (i.e. Cheers). Because people (clients) like to be a part of a group you know you can do two things: - Leverage their current groups to get introduced to others just like them. - That if you create a group for them, they will probably want to join. Birds of a feather flock together. That old saying has to do with people hang out with people like themselves. And since we know that people like to belong to groups, you can bet that the people your client knows are probably a lot like them.
  21. 21. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 21 *Important note: everyone has more than one side to their personality, and as such most likely belong to more than one type of group. Take the time to get to know your client so you can best offer value to the various groups in their life. When asking for referrals, or setting up referral systems, think about (or better yet – ask them) what your client finds valuable about your service/product. And then either ask them about others that they know, just like them, who also might benefit/like ABC value. On the other side, you can also create something for your client to be a part of and be a special member. Your client is already a part of your business family, and all you may need to do is highlight and personalize that connection a little bit more. You might also consider inviting your clients to engage in discussions just For clients on a blog, message board, or face to face at a lunch special or party. And, you might even take your top referring clients and establish an exclusive group just for them: sometime that recognition is more than enough, but some extra perks wouldn’t hurt as well.
  22. 22. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 22 Fill the need to belong and create an environment where your client can connect. Quick Examples: - A restaurant owner invites certain clients she knows who appreciate the restaurants various wines to be members in an exclusive “Wednesday Wine Tasters” club where they can taste new wines that might make it on the restaurants wine list. - An owner of a bike shop notes which customers are parents, and then invites them all for a special “Parent and Child: Riding Safe & Fun” class where they can meet other parents with a passion to ride. Each customer is encouraged to invite other parents they know who might like to have a fun day with their kids, make sure their kids are safe riders, and meet other parents like them.
  23. 23. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 23 Referral Making Question: “How can we extend invitations to others to join in what we have here? Who is like my client, and/or who would my client like to be in a group with?” Write Some Examples Here 1. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
  24. 24. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 24 WOW! Them: Exceeding Expectations One of the biggest opportunities for businesses to get more referrals and repeat clients is to exceed their expectations. But the problem is that most professionals never take the time to set the expectations by talking about what and how things will happen. And so when something happens that the client didn’t expect, it is a surprise. People only like surprises when it comes to chocolate cake and winning lotto tickets. What this means is that you have to really manage expectations well because if you don’t, then you are assuming that the client knows what will happen. But the client has their own ideas of what will happen, and when things don’t line up…missed expectations. Now here is a simple formula you can use after you have set expectations which allows you to then exceed them later. Unexpected + Value = Exceeded Expectations.
  25. 25. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 25 Quick Examples: - A chiropractor explains to a new patient his/her plan for helping their back pain. The patient is shown the facilities, the tables, and other equipment that will help in the personal care plan. Right before the first session is over though, the chiropractor surprises the patient with three free massage certificates(compliments of a masseuse alliance), good for 30 min. massage to give to their friends. The client is impressed and gives out the certificates to their friends who come back to the clinic, and one of them becomes a new client of the chiropractor. - A contractor is hired to redo someone’s driveway to help with the curb appeal of the house. While on the job he surprises the clients by having the front lawn mowed and hedges trimmed as well. The curb appeal just went up even higher and the clients tell everyone as neighbors comment on how nice everything looks.
  26. 26. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 26 Referral Making Question: “How can I surprise my clients with value so that I WOW them and make them raving fans?” Write Some Examples Here 1. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
  27. 27. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 27 Rewards + Gifts WARNING – Handle With Care: The last of the Referable Seven also requires a lot of care because it has the power to open up the door for a flood of referrals or to blow-up in your face. Rewards and gifts are great when unsolicited and you are using them to reward the behavior of someone introducing you to a friend, etc… You are not advertising that they will get a gift beforehand, rather this comes from a sense of gratitude. And the other way is to use gifts and rewards as a way to help with your current and past clients needs and cause them to start telling their friends about what you are doing…because it is so unexpected they just have to tell somebody. Rewards Upfront Become Tricky Letting people know upfront that if they refer you someone they will get ‘X’ has great opportunity to help or go sour. Certain professions and businesses lend
  28. 28. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 28 themselves to the process more than others. And, of course, it greatly depends on how you present the offer. If you make it a part of your practice then it is best to introduce that idea in your Initial Consultation. The reason is that, again with surprises, it can throw a curve ball into how your client perceives you. Beware Of Making It Feel Like A Bribe The way that it can backfire is that your clients feel like they are being bought off and possibly selling out their friends to you. This is a perception that is best addressed by having a powerful and clear Initial Consultation where you lay out how you work (by referral) and plant seeds along the way. If they are a referral themselves then chances are they already know about your referral rewards program. As a general rule, the more removed a customer/client needs to be to get the service the less relationship there is, and can be less risk to implement a referral rewards program. And as the client has to work more directly with the business or service provider the more risky it can be as the client becomes confused and unclear about the relationship.
  29. 29. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 29 Quick Examples: - A local restaurant sets up an online Referral Rewards Program where customers can forward coupons, etc… via email to their friends and family. Each has their own personal account and points are accrued for prizes and free meals. - A carpet cleaning service lets customers upfront know that for every referral they receive (which turns into a paying client) that customer will get X% (i.e. 20%) back from on their bill. Many customers now desire the service because they think they can just refer a few friends (who would get their carpets cleaned anyhow) and get it all for free.
  30. 30. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 30 Referral Making Question: “What can I give to my clients that will make them feel valued and want to tell others about what they have received?” Write Some Examples Here 1. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
  31. 31. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 31 What to do now? -Look for ways to make your clients feel good. -Fill out ideas for each section. -Ask for their help – because people like to help, remember? -Always exceed expectations. -And…remember to ask for the referral – it will double your success.
  32. 32. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 32 Image Credits for Flickr Photos: Why Does A Referral Happen? The Big “I” Pg. 5 Ferdinand Reus Pg. 16 Ponchosqueal Know, Like, and Trust Pg. 18 Billypalooza Pg. 7 CMDuke Community Pg. 19 MagnusFranklin Pg. 9 OxFamNoVib Pg. 22 Jenser (Clasix-Design) Show Your Smarts Exceeded Expectations Pg. 10 SpakAttacks Pg. 23 Sean Dreilinger Hero/Helper Pg. 25 Champion of Cheese Pg. 13 IttyBittiesForYou Rewards + Gifts Pg. 15 The Nickster Pg. 26 LeChampionduMonde Pg. 29 LitlNemo
  33. 33. The Referable Seven: Why And When A Referral Happens Reuben Rail 33 The Referable Seven Why And When A Referral Happens (or “How to get people to introduce you to those they know and like!”) -By Reuben Rail For More Free Referral Tips And Resources Go To www.ReferralArchitects.com

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