If you do a reasonable job for clients from time to time they will refer you to other businesses who will eventually, become your clients.
Ask practitioners how they market their practice, and in the majority of cases they will say they have no formal marketing processes as they get all their new business from referrals.
Ask them how they manage the referrals process and the majority will raise their eyebrows:
“We just wait for clients to recommend us…”
If this is how you win new business from referrals think how much more powerful, and productive, the process would be if you ‘actively’ sought out new business leads from clients instead of ‘passively’ waited for referrals to come to you?
Or do you still roam in the land of the dinosaurs? Do you think that it is unprofessional, makes you look desperate for work, or puts undue pressure on clients to come up with referrals? The problem with the passive approach is that as your relationship with a client matures they will make assumptions about you: that you are always busy and therefore, have no time to take on more work…
Asking for a referral – the active approach – is much more about business networking than desperation. And it works both ways; once you get into the process you may find numerous ways to cross-refer your clients to each other.
Don’t hide your light under a bushel. Ask the question: we are keen to expand the practice, do you know anyone we could approach?
If you are going to rely on referrals then actively pursue new leads. Otherwise your “eggs in one basket”, relying solely on referrals for growth, will inevitably lead to a decline in new client appointments.