Getting the Right Referral

A salesperson is trying to sell you his / her service. Your instincts tell you to ask for a referral. However, there’s a small voice in the back of your mind saying they’ll provide you with a list of their best clients. Why not be more specific about your referral? VBO recommends trying the following technique.

New Client Referral – Ask for a referral from a client that has been with them for less than 6 months. If you’re moving your services over to a new provider, you want to ensure the transition is going to go smoothly. Sample questions include:

– How smooth was the transition from one provider to the next?
– How helpful was the new service provider with the transition?
– After the transition was complete, how often do you talk to the service provider? (This question translates into – once they signed you on as a client, did they lose interest in you?)

Typically new clients are treated like the golden child. If the new client is experiencing frustrations at this point, you might decide that switching to this service provider isn’t a fit for your needs.

Terminated Client Referral – Ask for a referral from a client they recently lost. An exit strategy is just as important as enrollment. Sample questions include:

– Did the service provider help you transition to a new service provider?
– Did the service provider create a clean exit strategy for you?

A service provider should remain professional on the way out just as much as the way in. If you find that your new service provider isn’t what was promised, you’ll be shopping again and perhaps you’ll remember how helpful the previous service provider was.

Traditional Client Referral – It doesn’t hurt to ask for one additional referral to their liking. You’ll get the golden client referral but that could be helpful as well. Sample questions include:

– How long have you been with the current service provider?
– Have you ever thought of switching? Why or why not?

If you found this information helpful and use it, let us know your results! #VBOClientReferral Please feel free to re-tweet this blog or post it on your FB page.

The Virtual BackOffice can be reached for any questions or comments at @VBOllc /