If you’re among those who think referral selling doesn’t scale, consider this: B2B sales representatives report that referrals generate at least twice as many closed deals as marketing-generated leads, according to Sales Benchmark Index.
Yes, referrals rock! But, you must earn the right to ask for them.
Start by Earning TrustPeople do business with people they know, like, and trust. You would never refer someone who doesn't meet these three criteria. Referral selling is very personal. Your reputation is on the line when you vouch for people. So you need to trust that they will take as good care of your contacts or clients as you would, that they'll follow up, that they will add value to the discussion, and that they will act with integrity. This is why you must earn the right to ask for referrals. So where do you start?
You’ve Already Earned the Right With…Existing clients are our best—and often most under-leveraged—source of referrals. With them, we have already earned the right to ask, because they:
- Know first-hand the value of our solutions
- Can attest to the ROI they’ve received from working with us
- Trust us (or else they wouldn’t do business with us)
You can ask:
- During the sales process when you’ve added value
- When your client has thanked you
- Those with whom you and your team interact during the implementation process
If You Don’t Ask, You Don’t GetYour work may speak for itself, but your clients probably won’t—unless you ask. Many salespeople expect satisfied customers to automatically refer them. But here's the deal: your clients have their own businesses to worry about. They have a lot of competing issues, systems to upgrade, leadership challenges to meet, and a myriad of other decisions to make every day. You are just not top of mind for them.
You might be surprised by how willing your clients are to help you. All you have to do is ask.