How can you join the tiny minority of advisors who generate 100 percent of their business by referral? Does it sound impossible to join these ranks? It’s not. If you’re new to the industry and disinclined to tap your circle of influence for business, you may conclude that these elite advisors live in some kind of parallel universe, with talent and luck on their side that may seem positively alien to you.
In truth, what appears to be luck is really a keenly manufactured product of great referral marketing.
Two Routes to Client Referrals
Referrals are generated in two (and only two) ways: through the expansion of friendships, and through incentives.
When you make a client into a friend, you open a door to some of the best clients you will ever have. You should never be reluctant to ask a friend to refer you new business. These referrals are the closest things to gifts in this industry.
Aside from promoting the value of your services in a context of trust and friendship, you can use incentives. The key to referral incentives is to offer a gift with emotional and monetary value that requires a minimum of effort for the referring party to obtain. For example: if your client Jill refers her friend Ann to you, Jill gets a free dinner or round of golf.