The art of a perfect referral program is not something with which to mess around. As a preneed insurance agent or final expense insurance agent, you need to build a solid referral program if you want your clientele to replenish itself. Make your efforts mean more than just one client at a time: create a referral program that helps you help others.
A perfect referral program starts with good customer service. Even clients who have their needs met and are perfectly satisfied with their experience may not refer you to their friends and family if your customer service was simply “satisfactory”. From first contact to the “thank you for your business” note, your customer service needs to be stellar if you expect people to go out of their way to recommend you. How is your customer service, really?
- Do your customers use positive language when speaking about your product, past conversations, or ask you questions?
- Do your clients speak to you in a casual, personal way? Do they show physical and verbal signs of trusting you?
- What could you do to be more available, more helpful, or more thoughtful?
After adjusting your customer service attitudes, the next element of a perfect referral program is follow-up. After your client has arranged their funeral, or made a plan for their final expenses, and are finished with your services, it is key to follow up with them. A personal phone call or a note in the mail may touch base just enough to remind your past client that you’re still helping people with their end of life insurance needs. Think about these questions:
- Do your clients hear from you after they walk out of your office?
- Is that relationship of respect and trust that you built with your clientele something that continues after their preneed insurance is settled?
- Do your clients think of you after they’re done using your services?
Finally, a perfect referral program is good for both you and the client who recommends your services. They key word here is “incentivize”. Preneed insurance agents and final expense insurance agents who really want to build a lucrative referral program incentivize referrals for current clients who recommend your services, past clients who recommend your services, and future clients who find you based on a referral. Consider these questions when deciding how to incentivize your services to encourage referrals:
- Do clients have your contact information handy so they can recommend your services to their friends and family?
- Are you easy to get a hold of so they feel confident in referring people to you?
- What can you offer past clients who refer people to you? Gift cards, movie tickets, a party at your pool?
- What can you offer current clients who refer people to you? Discounts, upgrades, special opportunities no one else gets?
- What can you offer future clients who found your services based on a referral? Offering them some kind of deal right from the start might encourage them to refer you to others AND become your client themselves.
We recommend building your perfect referral program after asking yourself these questions and reflecting about what you are already doing right. If you have some trusted and reliable clients that have already recommended your services, consider asking them what incentivized them to refer you. The path to a perfect referral program is before you!