While sales have always been exploring more about a potential lead and learning what they truly need, it doesn't help sales reps gain an edge over making an actual sale. There are a dozen-odd sales techniques and strategies in the B2B domain, yet none as productive as ‘Referrals’. The big question is,
- Do businesses understand the concept of referral sales?
- How can the B2B sphere tap its full potential?
- What ROI do referrals promise?
Well, once you understand the concept of Referrals and the process involved, sales would not just be effortless, it will be the next game-changer for your business. Within B2B sales, conducting strategic referral sales can be done in two ways:
1. First will be requesting your current customers to refer your product and services to another company.
2. The second way is by inviting your current customers to share contact details for other companies who they believe can benefit from your product or services.
One way or the other, referrals prove to be far better than cold calling. Leads through referrals are a warm outbound lead generation to leverage the trust and brand credibility that you have established with your current set of customers. What makes this process more fruitful is when your current customers are your brand advocates and bring in qualified leads for you.
Having a referral does make a sales professional’s job easier and lays a stronger foundation right from the first initiative as compared to striking a conversation with a stranger. It is evident that your happy customers prove to be an asset at spreading a good word about you, but through a channelled referral process, they are also bound to pass on leads that are within your industry expertise. Such a method typically leads to a relatively high closing rate than traditional sales methods.
Now that you are halfway through the door at understanding referrals and its benefits, let’s deep dive into the best way to get one. One of the most ideal ways to acquire good referrals is right at the point of sale. Yes, the best way is to get referrals is by being proactive. If you act fast and do not wish to see your potential sales track stagger, asking for referrals right after the purchase is a jackpot. The reason behind this is simple, as, within the B2B industry, it is certain that the customers making the purchase have researched well about your business and trust you with theirs.
At times, many decision-makers within an organization have researched well, got convinced, and approved of a sale. If so, this is the right time to extend the opportunity of taking referrals where they are happy with the sale and the experience they have had so far. Though a very small number, there is a chance that your newly onboarded customers might want to wait a while before they give a referral, that is alright, and you do not need to rush them.
The process of referrals starts from making a sale, requesting referrals, or a direct introduction with like-minded businesses and ensuring you deliver what you promise— to your customer as well as the potential lead. When you talk about return on investment (ROI) on such a strategy, it is a complete win-win. Referrals within the B2B industry, cannot be incentive driven. Usually a goodwill gesture or thanking for displaying optimum service, customers contribute to introducing you to many others who can benefit from your product or service.
Before you think about rolling out your next big referral effort, do make sure that you are taking an extra step at valuing your current sales, delivering exceptional service, and making a customer feel privileged at all times. There is no better way to accentuate your sales than a happy customer who believes in you and values the business you have established.