Friday, 29 January 2016 15:19

Are You Too Nice To Be In Business?

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Build the business and increase customers with a solid referral system.
Or are you just using and promoting your friend’s products and services?

A professional network of referral businesses consists of service providers that are proven experts with a leading reputation in their fields. Likewise, our customers are busy, and we need to make it easy for them to recommend our business. We need to commit to standards establishing an effective referral system to attract and grow our new customers.


We often see business owners that surround themselves with friends. Friends tend to be positive, because they are nice, but they may not necessarily be experts in their field. It is wrong to assume that happy customers will recommend them. Business need to transition to the modern customer-centric Reputation model. The Reputation model has elevated referrals to the level of a Business Best Practice.

Building a strong referral system is no longer an option and has outgrown the ‘if it happens” mentality. It has become a necessity to being successful in this customer-driven economy. An important element of transitioning your business to the modern reputation model, and away from a traditional branding model is developing and engaging in a meaningful referral system. As in all reputation methods of building a business, building a profitable referral system takes a realistic time frame, a replicatable executable plan, and realistic goals.

A business referral system falls in the 4Ps of reputation (people, product, process and promotion), under the promotion process in the reputation marketing model. There are two different pieces to creating a referral system for business, customers, and business owners. The customer piece includes formulating an easy to follow structure for customers and contacts to refer, meaning introduce and recommend your products and services to friends and family. The business piece includes a systematic, structured plan to reciprocate referrals for business owners to help meet their customers’ needs.

Details of the customer piece: We need to…

…communicate with and ask happy customers to help get the word out about the business. We need a systematic way to leverage customer’s reviews and feedback. Each industry has a unique way of connecting and delivering to customers. Make it easy by supplying comments or quotes for them to post to their social media accounts.
…make it easy to share information using your customers’ social media platforms. Make sure the “share” button is added to newsletters, website, and email communications. We must compose messages is in a short, impactful and informative theme, versus only sending sales and discount information. The information has to beneficial and important to encourage your customers to share intriguing and essential communications with the friends and family.
Details of the business piece: We need to…

… identify and vet a network of businesses that can help our clients in areas in which we do not practice. The time investment in applying the reputation’s 3Ds (Discover, Define, and Develop) method is critical to building a solid referral system.
…step up our game to not only to exceed our clients’ expectations, but we have to exceed the expectations of the business owners we want to include in our referral system. A lucrative reciprocated referral system is earned, not entitled.
In today’s competitive, customer-driven economy, the days of the “lone ranger” are over. We need a strong network of professional businesses. The standard we create for our business must also be applied to other business owners. Using the Reputation 3D method, Discover, Define, and Develop makes creating a referral system a process that will assure an efficient method of building this area of business by removing the emotional element. Associating or referring customers or other business that are not experts will damage the business reputation

Last modified on Wednesday, 24 February 2016 15:17
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