The key to generating referrals starts with identifying specific marketing strategies that everyone in your company can implement. Fortunately, these marketing tactics can be easy to employ and cost-effective, provided that you’re well organized. To do this, create a written plan, which includes your specific goals and objectives, budgets, timelines, process for implementation and ROI strategy.
As you know, referrals come from happy customers. But consider this, increased referral business is the direct result of your entire company pulling together as a team. Develop your strategy and get everyone on the same page. Help your employees understand the need to stay in front of customers on a regular basis. Stress the importance of maintaining customer mindshare in the event that your clients are asked for a referral. You should also come up with incentives that you can offer customers for giving referrals.
Some strategies to employ include direct mail campaigns and Internet campaigns. E-newsletters for example, are a very cost-effective way to communicate with customers since postage and printing are absent. Include a “Forward” button on your e-newsletter. You can also send printed newsletters that include helpful tips and recent technology trends. Add an incentive for referrals.
Since your employees interact with customers on a regular basis, make sure they are adequately equipped with marketing material that they can distribute to customers for referral purposes. For example, outside employees should be required to keep a stack of brochures and business cards with them at all times. Tell them to give customers a few brochures in the event they have a referral. Train employees to ask for referrals upon completion of the job.
Below are 10 easy tactics to employ
1. Give your customers a few brochures to pass on to other people.
2. Send informative e-newsletters that include a “Forward” button or “sign up for newsletter” button.
3. Place graphics on your vehicle to increase awareness. Make you phone and website highly visible.
4. Attach a weather-proof plastic box to your vehicle and stock it with company tri-folds.
5. When the job is complete, personally ask your customers for a referral
6. Offer your customers incentives for referrals.
7. Keep your website up to date and easy to navigate.
8. Send personalized greeting cards to your customers. Include a few business cards in the envelop.
9. Send hard copy newsletters with technology trends. Ask customers if they know anyone who might want to be included on your mailing list.
10. Advertise in business trade journals that your customers read. First ask them what they read.
Leslie Stevens, President of Eclipse Marketing, a full-service marketing and PR firm, has over 15 years experience providing marketing strategies and marketing tools to electronic systems contractors, manufacturers and distributors.
Eclipse Marketing provides Marketing Tools to CEDIA, INFOCOMM INTERNATIONAL, PARA TechHome and NASBA. These cost-effective marketing tools are designed to enable system contractors to increase sales by promoting their business on a professional level.