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How to Get Referrals from Your Existing Clients

“What’s the Best Way to Get Referrals from Your Existing Clients? Our sales team is calling and asking the “WHO DO YOU KNOW?” question but we aren’t having much success.”

I’m not a fan of the “Who do you know?” question for two reasons:

  1. It puts your client on the spot when they weren’t prepared for it;
  2. Even when you get a few names, in most cases, they are just about an inch above the quality of opening a phone book and randomly picking out a name.

Your clients may be a great fit, but that doesn’t mean they know what your ideal target looks like. In many cases, you end up with a few random names that come to their mind in the heat of the moment, yet they aren’t qualified.
Now, of course, you’ll always have a time or two where it pans out in your favor, but if that was happening often enough, I doubt you’d be asking me this question to begin with.
Something else to think about… even if it does work on occasion, at what price?
How many clients are you willing to have “fear” your incoming call because they know you’re looking to squeeze a referral or two out of them? Just something to think about.
Of course, when prospects start to refer you to their connections all on their own, those leads are worth their weight in gold. But that’s a different “referral” altogether.

A Better “Referral” System

What I’ve found to be the best system for generating warm referral leads is to do the following:
1) Create a 20-minute webinar that SOLVES A PROBLEM for your core audience.
This webinar is NOT a company commercial nor a 20-minute DEMO of what it is that you offer. In fact, when the webinar starts, SKIP the 5-minute who you are, what your company does BS and get right to the problem at hand and then show your audience HOW TO SOLVE IT.
For an example on what a SOLVE THE PROBLEM WEBINAR looks like in action, see our webinar on: Voicemail Strategies – How to Get More Prospects to Call You back, TODAY!
2) Let Email Do the Work.
Once your 20-minute HOW TO SOLVE A PROBLEM webinar is created, send out an email to your client list letting them know that you would like to invite them to attend the session and if they would simply forward the email to some of their business or Linkedin connections they feel would also benefit from it.
You could even suggest they “tweet” about it. If your subject line (the title of your webinar) is strong and on point with your targeted audience, you could generate anywhere from 50 to 500 fresh new leads, with one well crafted and managed email blast.
Now, which would you rather call on… 2 or 3 names that were coughed up in a pressure situation, or have 50 to 500 fresh new leads to call on that attended your webinar and now see you as an industry subject matter expert on helping them solve their problems?
– Michael Pedone
Michael Pedone teaches inside sales teams how to pick up the phone and close business. He is the CEO/FOUNDER of SalesBuzz.com – An online sales training company.


Register Now for Our Next 8-Week Phone Skills Improvement Program!

  • Eliminate “No, Thanks”, “Not Interested” & “We’re All Set” Responses
  • Learn a step-by-step process for Cold Calling and Warm Calling
  • Neutralize Gatekeepers & Get Voicemails Returned
  • Ask Engaging Questions Instead of Probing
  • Improve your Qualifying Skills
  • Learn more effective Sales Questions to ask (and ones to avoid)
  • Give Stellar Presentations & Handle Objections
  • Close Follow-up Calls and Get Targeted Referrals
  • How to Set & Achieve Your Toughest Sales Goals
  • Improve Your Time Management Skills

Duration: 1 hour per week for 8 weeks
Where: Online @ your desk, conference room or home
Presenters: Michael Pedone