It is a fact that Word of Mouth is the most powerful and influential marketing tool you have. People are more likely to be influenced by someone they know and trust for product and service recommendations.
Coupled with Customer Care there would be no reason that you wouldn’t be back to back booked.
A referral system works by the basics of word of mouth. The main idea is to provide a happy customer with a simple way for them to share your business or products with their friends. The customer tells their friends about the business and the business gains new customers.
However, a lot of businesses will just wait and simple hope for referrals and hope people will talk about their business to others.
To be better and busier than your competition you need to ENCOURAGE referrals.
EASY WAYS TO ENCOURAGE MORE REFERRALS:
1. Have a referral system
Because a referral system is a WAY to provide happy customers with a SIMPLE way they can share your business, you have to formulate an easy system they can use.
Research has shown that adding an incentive to refer their friends is most effective.
What incentive works? Now this is an individual thing and we can’t stress enough about surveying your customers. You have to find out and not ‘assume’ what they would like as an incentive.
This can easily be done by a quick survey on social media, when they come into the salon etc.
Somethings we can recommend;
- Discount off their next service (up to 50% we recommend)
- Free service (if you are clever you could do new services that maybe the client has not already tried like henna brows or something - this may also encourage them to then get that service with you in the future.)
- Movie, coffee etc vouchers
- Free products
- Service vouchers
- Random ‘lucky dip’ gifts
2. Constantly remind your clients of your referral systems
It is so important to constantly remind your clients about your referral system. Once is never enough. Each time they come in you can casually remind them about the system. Have a notice up around the checkout/reception area etc.
Don’t think just because you told them once, they will remember.
3. Run competitions with your clients to encourage more referrals
Having seasonal or occasion competitions (Mothers Day, Christmas, Racing Season, your salons birthday etc) are wonderful times to getting customers to refer their friends. Having a hamper or free service voucher (something larger than normal) as the grand prize and then run a competition for every person they refer they get to go into the draw type thing. One salon even had that for every person they refer for the competition, not only did they go into the draw to win a hamper worth $1000 but ALSO each person received 50% off their next service AND the person they referred got 20% off.
4. Give all clients a goodie bag
Not only are Goodie Bags are beautiful and caring little treat to give each customer, but also it is a great opportunity to give clients some of your marketing. You should have a simple way they can refer someone … like a business card for them to give their friends with a discount voucher on it.
We have written a whole blog about Goodie Bags and can’t stress them enough.
5. Social media is now a form of word of mouth
Get your clients to post about you on social media, this influences their friends in coming to you as their preferred service provider.
Get them to tag you in their photos, mention you in their posts and let all their friends know how awesome you are.
Get them to check in with you.
We had a sign at reception, that if a person checked in on FB with us, they received instantly $5 off their service. We received a lot of check in’s from just this simple thing!
Take a photo of your clients lashes and ask them to post it and tag your business in the photo.
As a general rule, most people want to HELP small businesses and are more than willing to help you. Man is basically good. That is a fact. We can be dick’s but underneath we are basically good and beautiful people.
Ask your clients to help you by talking about you on their social media. 98% of the time, they have no problem in doing this.
6. Reviews online are a form of word of mouth
Again we can't stress enough about the importance of reviews. So much so that we wrote a whole blog just on this one point. Have a look here ….
7. Can’t stress enough Customer Care is the most essential ingredient to ensuring referrals
And lastly, all of the above will be useless unless you care about the customers you already have and deliver a unique and beautiful service to them.