A client can be thrilled with the service you gave them and will tell everyone how they love their new bathroom. They may rave about the new shower head or the heated tile on the floor. They will even talk about the feeling of a new space. Customers rarely mention the name of the contractor who performed the remodel or the brand of the tile or the type of heating system used under the tile or the name of the installation company. Although they love the space, they don’t make a direct referral to their friends and family. So how can your clients become part of your sales team? You ask them. You ask them directly.
Asking for a referral may sound something like this: ‘Mrs. Jackson, I’m thrilled that you love your new bathroom. It has been a great pleasure working with you. Do you know anyone who is interested in making upgrades in their home in the next six months? If so, would you mind making an introduction? I would love the opportunity to help them with the planning process and eventually help them create the home of their dreams.’
Making ‘the ask’ doesn’t have to be awkward or pushy or salesy. ‘The ask’ should be conversational and come from a place of giving. If you are offering a great solution to a problem, you are not just pushing a product. Your solution is a gift to your next customer. Making ‘the ask’ should be part of your business routine.
We sometimes make the assumption that because a customer is satisfied with the product/service, that they will automatically tell their friends and family. The truth is, they aren’t thinking of your products while out performing their everyday activities. It’s not that they wouldn’t recommend you, they simply don’t think of it. You have to remember that you live and breathe your products and services, your customers don’t. They aren’t thinking about bathroom tiles when they’re at their children’s soccer game.
You have to make it easy for them. You can’t expect them to think about floor tiles at the soccer game. By asking them directly, you take the responsibility off of them and you take ownership of it. If they know someone, great. If not, perhaps they will remember that you asked them and that referrals are an important part of your business. You can’t realistically expect a referral from every client but you will never know who has a referral for you unless you ask.
Ammie’s Assignment: Make a list of customers who you have recently worked with and check in with them. Make sure that they are still satisfied and if so, ask them if they know other people who could use that great product or service. Let me know how it goes. Tell me how many new referrals you got this week by performing ‘the ask.’