How do you try and find new clients in your business? Is it straight marketing spent advertising, Google AdWords, Facebook, letterbox flyers, all those kinds of things, or partnerships and referral marketing? Partnerships and referral marketing are the absolute cheapest forms of marketing that you can get.
So, let’s break it down in its simplest form, what you need to do is identify other people who deal with your target market, either preferably before you deal with them, or even after you deal with them. What you do then is you build a relationship with them, so that people get to know like and trust you. In turn, they would have clients that would be our target market as well. We get to know trust and like them. Ideally, we can then cross-refer.
I’m not talking about paying referral fees, I’m talking about having an open and honest relationship with someone. That means, if they have a client that comes in, that crosses their threshold, that meets their criteria as a business, but needs the services that you provide, then they refer them to you. When they refer a client to you, it’s a warm referral, you’ve already been spoken about people know who you are, know what your services are. This means that you’ve got a much higher chance of actually turning that referral into a paying customer.
It does take some time. The best referral, systems have a structure where you try and catch up with your referrals on a regular basis, see what they’re doing cross-promoting each other’s newsletters, and understand the services that you both provide.
So please do think about referral marketing and partnerships, and how they can assist you thinking about who deals with your clients before or after you and making sure that they the people that you’re dealing with have the same mindset that you do in regard to your business. From our point of view, we want someone who’s going to be ethical, that’s probably a given for an accountant. But given recent things that have happened with some of the bigger firms just need mention that point. By ethical, someone who’s going to do the right thing by their client, someone who’s always available to help, when necessary, because that’s the same qualities that we find in ourselves. If we can find that in a referral partner, and get a relationship going with them with cross-referrals, then ultimately, everyone wins and most importantly, the client wins as well. So don’t forget referral marketing.