Marketing Wednesdays: Ask for Referrals

"Word of mouth" is one of the most valuable forms of advertising. It's powerful, effective, and very inexpensive! Your satisfied customers can be your best spokespeople and biggest cheerleaders.

However, even happy customers can use reminders that they ought to “tell a friend." How can you encourage customers to do so? Here are some ideas:

  • Create a formal "tell a friend" program whereby you reward your customers for spreading the word.
    Include a flier about your business and the products and services you offer with each purchase; encourage customers to pass this flier on to a friend.
  • If you have a "bricks and mortar" office or store, place an attractive sign in a visible place encouraging clients to tell their friends about your business.
  • If you send out regular emails to your customers, add a P.S. suggesting that they forward the email on to others who may be interested.
  • Order a roll of pre-printed "We love referrals" or "I'm never too busy for your referrals" stickers, and place these on your letters, envelopes, brochures, invoices and other printed materials.
  • Ask! A great time to bring up the subject is just after your customer has expressed their satisfaction with your product or service. "I'm so glad you're happy," you could say. "Do you know of anyone else that could benefit from our service? I would certainly appreciate the referral!"

A positive testimonial about your company – delivered directly from your satisfied customer to a potential customer – is one of the most powerful forms of advertising there is. It pays to encourage your customers to tell their friends about your business.