Service Insights from ClearlyRated

Published by ClearlyRated - 05/23/23

Sure, You Want More Referrals… But Are You Actually Referable?

Sure, You Want More Referrals… But Are You Actually Referable?

Referrals are the best—right? Not only are they the least expensive way to generate leads but they’re often the highest quality leads. Plus, B2B buyers hold high trust for referrals while looking for new vendors. In fact, 84% of B2B decision makers begin their buying process with a referral. 

But before you can reap the benefits of a robust referral program or simply ask your business development team to begin requesting them, you need to make sure your company is truly referable

What does it mean to be referable? 

When you achieve true referability, it means your clients both:

  • Feel comfortable referring others to your business
  • Want to refer others to you

The key is to give clients confidence that they won’t be steering someone in the wrong direction. Even then they’ll only want to refer people to your business if they experience one or all of the following: 

  1. They feel that you’ve made a noticeable impact on their success
  2. They care about you and your success
  3. They receive an incentive to refer others to your business

This means that to increase your referability you should focus on:

  1. Giving clients long-term confidence in your business.
  2. Earning their advocacy through an outstanding client experience (CX)—and maybe even give them some skin in the game (if referral programs are allowed in your industry)

4 Ways to Be More Referable

Boost your referability with these four tips. They’ll help you demonstrate value and earn your clients’ trust so they’ll be happy to give you referrals. 

1. Invest in your CX at every stage.

Your CX starts before you’ve even earned a paying customer. That’s right, how you treat your prospects is the first stage of your CX. It’s when you win them over and likely make some brand promises about what you’ll deliver and how. The next stage is onboarding new clients. This is ultimately when you want to make sure they feel good about their decision to work with you. From there your CX continues indefinitely but never grows less important. This is why it’s essential to consistently and continually request feedback from your clients. Only then can you identify weak points in your CX and capitalize on your strengths. As you do, your clients see you demonstrate care by asking for their feedback and responding to it with positive changes, they’ll be more likely to trust your company both now and in the future. And once you’ve earned their trust, they’re more likely to give you referrals. 

2. Formalize and communicate your unique process.

Think about how you deliver your product or service. Is there a clearly defined process? Maybe it starts with which questions you ask prospects and how you educate them on potential solutions. Next consider your onboarding period. As you welcome new clients, do you use unique checklists or assign an onboarding specialist to guide them through onboarding and early training? For existing clients, what are your communication standards, check-in frequencies, and service level agreements (SLAs)? Finally, how often do you check on your SLAs? Each step of your process should enhance your CX, adding value for every stage of your relationship. Record your process, making sure every person and team is trained on it and knows their part. Once you do, you can share it with current and prospective clients so they know what to expect and can see you delivering what you promised. 

3. Prepare to welcome and wow referrals.

Referrals are valuable leads. Not only are you more likely to close deals that start with referrals, but referred clients often have a higher lifetime value. So don’t waste them. Make sure your teams know how important it is to respond to referrals quickly. You may even consider creating an accelerated process for responding to referred leads. Roll out the red carpet and make every referred prospect glad they found you. Plus, when you treat these leads well, the person who referred them to you will be more likely to send others your way. 

4. Always thank clients for their referrals.

Whether or not a client’s referral results in a closed sale, always thank them. They went out on a limb for your business, and that’s not something to take lightly. It’s something to share gratitude for and encourage. Consider including this as a step in your process for responding to referrals. While a quick email is nice, consider going the extra mile with a handwritten card or even a small gift. 

Learn How to Identify the Right CX Goals and Generate More Referrals

If you’d like to learn more about how to improve your CX, you can start with your current clients. Ask them for feedback on your service, processes and team. One of the best ways to do so is with a Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey. NPS surveys require little time from your clients, and the right program will not only capture client feedback data but also help you analyze it for actionable insights. 

As your work to foster a positive CX, you’ll be ready to make the most of any and all referrals that come your way. You may even launch a successful referral program. 

To learn more about our NPS survey solutions, including how to integrate referral programs, chat with a live person now or click to see how it works

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