Wondering how you can create a great client referral system? Want to get more referrals as a financial advisor?
If you want to thrive as a financial advisor, then it’s important that you have proven ways to get new clients time and time again. One of the best ways to do this is by creating a great client referral system. By asking for referrals in a tactful way, you’ll build a strong business and will start thriving as a financial advisor.
Fortunately, we’re here to help you succeed. In this article, we’ll list the 7 top tips you need for creating an exciting financial advisor referral system.
Understanding the Importance of Client Referrals
As a financial advisor, very few things will be more valuable to you than a great client referral system.
For many financial advisors, referrals are the primary way of getting new clients. While many businesses make use of client referrals, referrals are at the core of the financial advisory industry. If you’re not maximizing the number of referrals you’re getting, you may be missing out on some great clients and failing to build the business you want.
Referred clients are typically worth more than a non-referred customer in the long run. If your client referral system is implemented correctly, it can make marketing your services and finding great clients a much simpler matter.
Getting referrals can be much easier than many other marketing methods out there. It can be difficult to win over new clients through marketing campaigns alone, and clients who are referred to your services by a close friend or family member will be much more likely to work with you.
The first step to getting more client referrals is to consistently provide superior service to your current ones. However, there are some ways to encourage clients to give you referrals as well. By implementing the right strategies and taking the right steps with your current clients, you’ll be able to get more referrals and will take your business to the next level.
Tips to Make Your Referral System Work for You
After you understand the importance of getting more referrals, it’s time to figure out how to do it. Here are a few client referral tips you can use to get more referrals.
1. Start With Your Current Clients
When implementing a referral system, it’s important that you consider where you can find referrals.
The primary source of new client referrals will likely be your current clients. While you may feel uncomfortable asking clients for referrals, the truth is that many satisfied clients will be happy to recommend your services to their friends, family members, and colleagues. They may just need a little encouragement to do so.
In particular, you’ll want to focus on asking for referrals from the clients that you enjoy working with the most. While it’s not always the case, your clients will generally have a personal network that is very similar to themselves. This means that if you have an ideal client in mind, you should first try to get referrals from your clients who are most similar to them. After that, you may want to consider asking your other clients for referrals as well.
2. Get to Know Other Professionals
While clients are a great source of referrals, it’s not the only one. Other professionals can be a great source of referrals, so you’ll want to do some professional networking to find other professionals who may be able to refer clients to you.
Other advisors can be a great source of referrals in your referral system and can be valuable people to know. You should especially look to connect with other advisors who have different specialties than you or have different investment minimums. After building a relationship with an advisor, you may find that they would be happy to send some clients your way if it’s the right fit.
Another great source of professional referrals are centers of influence such as attorneys, CPAs, or real estate agents, so be sure that you put some effort into creating some professional relationships. Whether you decide to attend networking events, join professional organizations or groups in your area, or reach out to the local community in some other way, the results can be well worth it.
3. Take a Selfless Approach
When trying to get more referrals, it’s important that you go about it in the right way. Avoid having a self-centered mindset and try to build real relationships with others. Whether you’re aiming to get referrals from your current clients or from your professional network, remember that generosity is key. Make sure that you’re looking for ways that you can help others and that you are, first and foremost, a giver rather than a receiver.
You should do everything you can to show appreciation for your clients and should look for ways to reward them for being loyal to you. This may include hosting special client appreciation events or sending out holiday greetings to show you care.
When building relationships with other professionals, you should first consider whether you can refer anybody to them or help them in some other way. By giving to clients and other professionals first and by being authentic, they’ll be more likely to return the favor later on.
4. Ask For Referrals Directly
It’s important to remember that to get referrals, you’ll usually need to ask for them.
While you may feel some anxiety about being direct when asking clients for referrals, you should try not to. Though you may not want to beg a new client for referrals on your very first meeting, it’s okay to plant a seed early on, letting them know that you’re looking for new clients. Then, once you get to know a client better and they’re happy with your services, you can be a bit more direct.
There is nothing wrong with asking for referrals directly, so avoid beating around the bush or trying to be too casual when asking for their help. Try to avoid being vague when asking for referrals and instead directly mention that you would be happy if a client were to recommend your services to family or friends. Also, remember to keep your ideal client in mind when asking, and don’t be afraid to state specifically what you’re looking for.
5. Don’t Be Pushy
The truth of the matter is that not all clients will be comfortable making referrals, even if they’re completely satisfied with your services.
When asking for referrals, you should avoid being too forceful. While you should ask your clients for referrals directly, don’t make it too hard for them to say “No” either. Be gentle when asking for referrals and make it clear that they don’t have to give you a direct answer. Try to avoid putting them into a position where they’ll have to verbally reject your request.
By being too pushy you may frustrate your clients and they may feel uncomfortable. Aim to be clear and genuine when asking for referrals while also leaving the ball in their court.
6. Show Appreciation With Personalized Gifts
As part of your client referral system, it’s critical that you show your appreciation to anyone who makes referrals. As opposed to offering upfront incentives, giving gifts after receiving a referral tends to be a much better choice for encouraging additional referrals as well as for strengthening your relationships over time.
You should aim to show your appreciation to anyone who gives you a referral on an ongoing basis and you should try to personalize any gifts that you give. Giving someone a gift card to their favorite restaurant can be a great option, but you may also want to give them tickets to see their favorite sports team, a local theater event, or a concert.
A person who receives a personalized, heartfelt gift will be more likely to make additional referrals and will feel more appreciated. As opposed to offering incentives, giving gifts instead will make the person feel less like they’re exchanging favors and more like they have a personal and authentic relationship with you.
7. Boost Your Web Presence
One more thing to remember when trying to boost referrals as a financial advisor is that technology can be a huge help.
If someone refers a friend to you, then it’s important that they’re able to easily find information about your services online. They should be able to perform a web search and easily find your contact information. You may be missing out on a lot of opportunities if you can’t be found easily online.
Creating a professional website and using social media can help you grow your presence online and will help ensure that referred clients will be able to find you easily. You should also make sure that you’re using search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to boost the presence of your site in search engines.
Using These Tips to Create a Financial Advisor Referral System
If you want to thrive as a financial advisor, you need to put some effort into improving your client referral system. By creating a great approach to getting more referrals, you’ll build up a stronger business and will get all of the clients that you can handle.
Need help taking your financial advisory business to the next level? Contact us today to learn how we can help you succeed.