There are at least five things that may get in the way of generating referrals. Spoiler alert – one might be staring back when we look in the mirror.
Not long ago, Mark Tibergien joined Steve Wershing and I on our podcast, Becoming Referable. Our conversation reminded me that generating referrals is not about a single tactic but a reflection of how you’ve built your business and your brand.
Five Questions You Need To Ask (and Answer) Honestly.
1. Are You Sending the Wrong Message?
It’s possible, according to Tibergien, that the way we behave may inadvertently send a signal that we’re too busy to accept new clients. That means that something as simple as taking inventory of your own body language and words you use when asked how you’re doing can make a world of difference. If the response is consistently “busy”, clients may rightly conclude that you’re having a difficult time keeping up with new business.
2. What do you do better than anyone else?
To drive more referrals, you need to have clarity on your niche and build your experience around it. Tibergien talks about understanding your ‘community’ – either a target group or a technical specialty that demonstrates your expertise.
3. Does your client experience reflect your niche?
The next critical step, according to Tibergien, is tailoring your client experience around the needs of your niche. That means (in our words) you go beyond delivering great service and design an experience that actively reflects the unique needs of your ideal clients. You can read more on this concept here.
4. Do you have a robust brand?
Tibergien talks about how the industry is evolving and the ways that will throw you off course. A clear and consistent brand acts like your ‘north star’, helping you make the right decisions along the way.
5. Do you have a strong culture?
Finally, Tibergien talks about the role of culture, pointing out that it doesn’t happen by accident, but needs to be intentionally designed and nurtured over time. Culture, he says, is not just internal but can be felt by clients as well.
This concept was mapped out in detail in Human Sigma by Jim Asplund and John H. Fleming if you’re interested in learning more about how client and team engagement work together in a ‘2+2=5’ sort of way.
Click below to hear the entire interview with Mark. He never disappoints!
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