Who would you trust more? A consultant recommended to you by your friend or the name of a consultancy firm you’ve found on Google?
Following up on a referral from a friend or family member can make you feel a little more comfortable with the person or company you’re potentially going to do business with (as opposed to a complete stranger) because you’ve already found some common ground.
For consultants, referrals make up a large part of their client base with around 90% of firms stating their most successful client base comes from referrals. Despite this, many consultants are too afraid to ask for a referral in case they come off too much like a pushy salesman, according to Business Community.
Referrals are a direct route to opportunity and one that consultants really can’t afford to miss out on. Check out our top 7 tips on how to get referrals.
1. Pursue people
Networking is crucial. Whether it is face-to-face chats at an event or dropping connections a message on social media, having a conversation with somebody will never go out of fashion.
2. Have a goal
What’s your plan? You need to know what you want to achieve in order to achieve it otherwise you’ll just be chasing your tail. Create a realistic plan of how you’re going to reach your goals within a certain timeframe.
3. Do what you say you’ll do
Offer a great service, do an outstanding job and clients will not only come back for their next project they’ll also be happy to share the positive results with somebody else and let’s face it, nothing beats a great review or recommendation… and it’s free publicity for you too!
4. Ask for a referral
When you’ve worked hard and done a great job there’s nothing wrong in asking a client for a referral. Most companies would much rather do business with a consultant that has a track record of being successful and they will certainly brag about their own success so there’s no harm in you revelling in the glory too… so don’t be shy!
Offer a promotion to entice people to talk about your consultancy. This could be a discount, a prize, or a refer-a-friend fee.
6. Write a blog
Start writing about your work and accomplishments and about newsworthy topics about your sector and you’ll soon establish yourself as an expert in your own field. Once you’ve built up your credibility (and Google rankings) – clients will know where to find you.
7. Say thank you
This isn’t rocket science, is it? If somebody helps you find a new client then it’s important as a business person (and a human being) to say thank you in the form of a thoughtful note or gift…it will surely go a long way.
Disclaimer: The advice provided here are our own interpretations and opinions. We have tried to simplify the main points of this blog but for more in-depth information please read the information on the above individual sites.