Q: How can I improve my process for getting referrals from clients, since these are the easiest and best leads to develop?

A: Getting referrals from a client and then having the referral return your call are challenging. According to referral coach Matt Anderson, his method of “warming up the referral” greatly increases the possibility of getting the referral to do business with you. Here’s part of his system.

  • While initially asking the client for referrals should be done face to face, create four endorsement e-mails for the referral source to send.
  • Ask the client, “Would you mind shooting her a quick e-mail to see if she would be interested in hearing from me?” This wording–”would you mind”–is important.
  • To ensure that the correct information is sent, say, “The easiest way is to have my assistant e-mail you what you might want to say. Then if you want to make any changes to it, please feel free to do so.”
  • Send the client the relevant e-mail copy. This should vary based on whether you want a personal introduction (e.g., for a big prospect such as a group case) or if you simply want an opportunity to call.

E-mail example #1:
Hi Dave: A business colleague, YOUR NAME, is someone I think you should meet. She is president of COMPANY and specializes in LTCI planning and protection. In addition to being well connected in our community, she has done a really good job for my company. Do you mind if she drops you a line sometime?
All the best, Matt

E-mail example #2:
A business colleague, YOUR NAME, is someone well worth getting together with. She is president of COMPANY and specializes in LTCI planning and protection. I think it would be mutually beneficial to spend some time with her. Would you be open to getting together for golf or a drink after work in the near future? If so, please let us know what dates fit your schedule.

* If clients prefer receiving a hand-written thank you note, send them this:
“It was great to see you yesterday. Thanks for recommending me to your friend Dave. All you need to tell him is that you’ve been really pleased with the work I’ve done and that you highly recommend that he at least have a conversation with me and see if I can drop him a line sometime. I’ll follow up with you toward the end of the month.”