Maximising Referrals: A Client-Centric Guide for Accountants
In the realm of client referrals, trust is the currency, and conversions become almost a certainty. However, clients don’t refer lightly; it demands a strategic approach. Explore practical tactics such as incentivising clients through loyalty programs, strengthening relationships, creating shareable content, leveraging LinkedIn, showcasing your value through reviews and testimonials, aligning with clients’ values, seeking feedback, and reciprocating referrals. This guide aims to transform your client-centric mindset, ensuring that referrals flow naturally as a testament to the exceptional service your accounting firm provides.
9 client-centric tips to improve your referral rate
When a client refers you, you already have the prospect’s trust, making conversions (almost) a sure thing. It’s the pinnacle of effective marketing. Unfortunately, clients don’t refer lightly. Why? Because it ties their reputation to you and uses up social currency. So what can you do to bolster their confidence and make it worth their time? Aside from continuing to provide a premium service, here are nine easy tricks that make all the difference:
1. Incentivise clients with a loyalty program
Let your biggest advocates earn rewards for each referral, with bonus points for successful ones. With rewards and VIP tiers, you’ll incentivise referrals while building stronger relationships with your customers. Check out the loyalty program platforms that allow you to integrate a referral program with your client journey seamlessly. As software tracks their progress, all you’ll have to worry about is providing a great service.
2. Improve relationships with existing clients
Let’s face it, your marketing should always focus on retention first and acquisition second. If you have an amazing long-term client, they’ll also look pretty attractive to your competitors, so it pays to invest in keeping them happy and engaged. The easiest way is with helpful, informative content via email or social media. This promotes loyalty in another way, too – keeping your accounting firm top of mind makes them more likely to think of you when their friends mention an accounting problem.
3. Create content that’s easy to share
Did you know that nearly half of your leads will view three to five pieces of your website content before contacting you? And yes, that includes referrals. That’s why it’s essential to arm your existing clients with convincing marketing material. If an opportunity arises for them to refer you, your content is there for them to share. Make sure every email, LinkedIn post or Instagram has a button to ‘Share with a friend’ while also linking to your loyalty program.
4. Make the most of LinkedIn
Just as prospects use the internet to research your business, you can do homework on them, too. LinkedIn is a free resource for potential referrals, networks and connections that may be interested in your services. Fortunately, the Advanced People Search feature can filter your contacts by industry, title, keywords and location. You’ll quickly find qualified second-degree connections that existing clients could introduce.
5. Remind them how good you are
When asking your clients to spread the word about you, have you given them the opportunity to experience your full value? Clients are much more likely to enthusiastically recommend you when they see you increase their monthly revenues or save them on tax. Send your clients regular updates, letting them know how positive their progress has been. Without these reminders, it’s too easy for them to take you for granted.
6. Use reviews and testimonials
According to Big Commerce, 72% of consumers say that good reviews and testimonials give them more trust in a business. Testimonials give prospects even more confidence in your services and are a great backup for referrals. Luckily, those fantastic clients who refer you to their friends are the perfect candidates to review your practice. Ask them if they would be comfortable sharing their client experience, and write up an article that is easy for them to share on their platforms.
7. Align with your customers’ values
When asking your clients for a favour, it helps to speak their language. What are their interests and goals? Can you customise your messaging to encourage them to help you? For example, if a client gives to the SPCA once a year, could you offer to donate in their name? Gestures like this go a long way to show how much you appreciate their efforts to help you.
8. Ask for feedback
Another excellent opportunity to ask for referrals is after a satisfaction survey. Survey Monkey is online survey software that can easily be linked to your BOMA content. Its surveys are super easy to create and have the added benefit of showing you how to improve your service. Make sure to add a question and link at the end – ‘Would you like to refer us to a friend?’
9. Refer their companies too
If you want your clients to recommend your service, you should be ready to do the same. However, it’s always risky to recommend an untried company to other clients. Try them out by showing your support – buy their products as corporate gifts, sponsor their events and use their services. This lets you do your research first so you can confidently recommend them.
A client-centric mentality
Ultimately, great referral rates come to the firms that truly deserve them. These tips aim to give your existing customers a better experience so that referrals come naturally. From improving your service to showing clients you care, keep a customer-centric mindset, and you can’t go too wrong.
Sign up for a free trial today to see how BOMA can help increase your referral rate.