I worked with a company for a long time that would never give out referrals because their greatest concern wasn’t that the customer got all the information they wanted, but rather that no negligence of the referred company would reflect poorly on them.
We all know people like that. They get it in their heads that if they give a customer the name and number of a company they need and could help them, and the person has a bad experience, that person will bad-mouth the company that gave the referral.
I don’t understand why you wouldn’t simply give the requested information with an “I’d love to hear how you feel about their service, so I know if I should refer them again” disclaimer. It’s fair, and at some point it’s important for your customers to depend on your advice. When you’re the go-to company, that’s a good thing. John Jantsch calls it being a ‘referral engine’: The Referral Engine: Teaching Your Business to Market Itself
A referral engine creates leads, builds community relevance, and becomes a necessary strategic partner with others who have learned to depend on it.
When you blog, believe it or not, you’re making your own ‘referrals’ to your own company with each post. You do this with internal linking.
Internal linking has many good side effects, but one of them is the ability to guide a visitor through your website strategically. Internal links that lead to good information keep your website visitor around longer, exploring your information and becoming acquainted with your products and services.
Next time you post a blog, think about two things:
- Which services page details something you talked about in your post?
- Does another blog post give more detail?
Always link at least twice within your post to another reference point within your website – both post and page. If you use WordPress.org websites, go to your visual editor and click on the ‘chain’ icon. Add the URL of the link you want to share in the first field shown. Then add the title of the page or post to the description field, and click ‘add link’. It’s as simple as that.
Seek out ways you can be better at referrals. Think about businesses you trust for your needs so you can offer them to others when they ask, and always, always, always, use your website to refer your own visitors to YOU.
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