As a small business owner, you already know how important word-of-mouth marketing is. Referrals are a fantastic way to bring in new clients. Here are 5 referral incentive ideas to ensure a great referral experience for new and existing clients:
1. Make sure the client from whom you’re asking a referral is a great client. Clients tend to refer others who share their outlook and attitude. You will likely get more out of referral from a great client than from one who isn’t the best fit for your company.
2. Take the initiative. Let clients know that you are looking for new business like them, and ask for referrals. Often, clients are willing to make referrals, but they simply don’t think about it. Referrals don’t just happen–step up and ask.
3. Choose interesting incentives. A gift card to a restaurant or store or tickets to a local even are common referral gifts; however, gifts like these often go unused if they are not carefully selected. Flowers, wine, and other items may also be appropriate. Choose gifts that match your brand and will appeal to clients.
4. Reward existing and new clients. Referral incentives for both clients can be more expensive, but may be worth it for your business. It is a one-time cost that will make a great impression on both clients.
5. Send a handwritten thank-you note. Even where a gift or discount would not be appropriate, a thank-you note is always welcome. Handwritten notes are tasteful and personal. They only take a few extra minutes to write, but provide a huge impact. Consider including a thank-you note on its own or with a referral incentive.
Most importantly, make sure that you’re providing a service worth recommending. Referrals put a client’s reputation on the line. Use these incentives to show how much you appreciate your clients’ trust in you.