Asking for referrals makes many small business owners and salespeople uncomfortable. However, if you do a great job for customers and they are happy with you, customers are usually pleased to help you succeed and give you a referral. But customers often won’t think of referring your small business without prompting. You have to ask.
The most effective way to overcome reluctance is to build asking for referrals into your regular habits. Here are five ideas you can consider as “triggers” to asking for a referral:
- When a customer submits a glowing customer service review
- In the middle of a project, when the customer is most involved in your work together
- After delivery of a product, when the customer is most delighted
- At your anniversary date with a customer, as part of a broader “It’s been an outstanding year” message
- During any conversation with your customer when they are particularly pleased with your small business
As a bonus, these are also perfect times to ask for a testimonial. Why not do both?