A Special Lesson On Referral Systems

STOP Begging for Referrals and START Generating a Constant Stream of New Customers Using Proven Referral Systems.

If you're NOT getting a consistent flow of referrals every month from your clients, than you're missing out on a tremendous, tremendous spa business building tool.
I'd go on to say that if you don't address the lack of referrals coming into your day spa right now, you are going to have a very difficult time achieving or sustaining any kind of successful day spa business.
Seriously, that's no exaggeration!
I don't have to tell you how important referrals are to your business. If you're the day spa owner or the spa director, you know that referrals are the lifeblood of your business.  
If that's the case, why aren't you getting more referrals?
Why don't ALL your new customers come from referrals? You probably provide excellent products and deliver the highest quality of service. No doubt you have a great reputation and your customers love you. If that's really the case (and I believe it is), why aren't you getting more referrals?
With that said...
My goal in this article is to solve the whole referral mystery for you, and give you the start of a very simple formula that you can begin using immediately to create a flood of referrals into your day spa every month.
In my humble opinion, there are two reasons why you're not getting more referrals -- the first one is...
1. You Get Absolutely Sick At the Thought of Asking for a Referral

2.  Your Customers Are Too Busy (or Lazy) to Give You Referrals
If you fall into the first category, you're not alone. You and most other business people and independent professionals get ill at the thought of asking for referrals. If you're like me you simply HATE asking for referrals.
But, before I actually reveal the formula for getting referrals, I want to make sure that you really understand why referrals are so incredibly valuable to you and your day spa business.
For one, a referral is much more likely to actually become a client. And, a referral is much more likely to stay a client for a longer period of time.
Clients who were referrals tend to refer more often themselves, spend more money with you, spend it more often, and tend to be more consistent and loyal.
The beauty with referrals is that they offer even more referrals. Plain and simple, the more referrals you get the bigger and bigger your spa business will get, and FAST!
The good news about referrals is that, when done correctly and systematically, they are pretty darn easy to acquire from clients.
Now with that out of the way... here are the characteristics of a good referral program.

The best referral programs that have the power to transform your business all have these five characteristics:
1. They are systematic.
2. They work on a one-to-many basis.
3. They have the ability to tap into people's networks.
4. They use incentives to motivate people to refer.
5. They refer people to high quality products and services.
(This is your responsibility, you must back up your service and quality claims).
In simple language... are you ready for the 'secret formula' to getting tons of referrals?????
Here it is...
It's called E.A.R.
Obviously, the first thing that needs to happen for you to create a flood of referrals coming into your spa business is that you need to EARN them.
You have to deserve referrals in order to get referrals. Characteristic #5
The way you EARN referrals is by treating your clients as if they were valued friends.
Always acknowledge verbally to your clients how important they are to you and how much you value them.
Care about them.
Anyone that is important to your clients must become important to you. You should offer to advice, talk to, or meet with anyone who is important to your clients.
The key is to begin building relationships with your clients and then cultivate their referrals.

On top of all this, you obviously must deliver quality bodywork sessions, exude professionalism, create a clean, comfortable, and caring environment, and have enthusiasm for what you do.
If you can do all of that all of the time (which you can), than you will EARN referrals like crazy.
Once you have earned referrals, the next step is to actually ASK for them.
This is where most spas go terribly wrong.
They just don't ASK! And DON'T do it systematically.
I guarantee that if you did nothing else but began asking your clients for referrals on a regular basis you would instantly see an increase in referrals coming into your business.
A client who really likes you will actually feel honoured that you have asked for their help.
Also, don't be afraid to tell your clients who they should be thinking of as referrals (i.e. people under a lot of stress, people who are health conscious, people in pain, people who are tired).
It is said that everyone knows at least 250 other people. Imagine if you were able to get just 20 people to refer just 10% of all their network of friends, family, and associates to your spa business next month. That would result in over 500 referrals to your business in just one month!  
Those are conservative figures. It depends on how many referral systems you set up because with more programs they will motivate people to tell their entire 250+ network of friends, family members, and associates. Characteristic #1 & #2

Once you've EARNED and ASKED for referrals the next step is to REWARD.
Even though all three steps are crucial to this System, I really believe that REWARDING might just be THE most important step in the entire process. Characteristic #4
Once a client gives you a referral, the next step is to REWARD that client with something of value.
It's critical to the success of your referral program and programs that every single time a client gives you a referral you reward them.
Remember, the things that we reward and recognize most, are the things that will happen the most often.
Whatever behaviour we want to see happen more often in the people around us, we should recognize and reward as often as possible.
Whether we say something positive, negative, or don't say anything at all after someone does something good or bad, that we are still reinforcing the behaviour either way.
We want to say something and that something needs to be an expression of gratitude along with a REWARD.
The point... what we pay attention to the most and recognize and reward, are the things that are going to happen the most often.
Now, there are a couple of highly effective ways to do that.
1. With a Referral Reward Program/ System as mentioned above
2. With a Referral Recognition Program
For space purposes, I'll give you the 10 second version of both.
In a nutshell, you should publicly recognize the clients who refer, both in your office and at special client events. (I.e. Referral Recognition Quarterly Dinner)
And, you should publicly reward your clients with better and better gifts as they refer more and more people to your spa business.
You should list the names of people who refer new clients to your spa within your office and in your monthly or weekly client newsletter. (I hope you are sending a newsletter?)
The more REWARD and RECOGNITION the better! That's pretty much the essence of a Referral Reward Program and a Referral Recognition Program.
There you have it... the basics of a solid, proven, simple referral generating system that really works.
If everything you do is geared around EARNING referrals, then ASKING for referrals, and then finally REWARDING your clients for their referrals, you will begin to see a massive increase in the number of referrals coming into your spa business.
Please, please, please don't just read this article and then delete it without deciding what action you are going to take next from what you've just learned to start getting a flood of referrals into your business.
If you read this entire article and don't take any new action, than absolutely nothing is going to change for you or your Day Spa.
The key to your success lies in YOU TAKING ACTION!
Take a moment right now to make a commitment to your success and decide what action from what you just read you are going to immediately take to begin getting referrals and creating the spa business you've always dreamed about.

John Uhrig, President & CEO of Monochrome Marketing Solutions, a Vancouver, BC-based marketing consulting firm. And is the editor of the Spa Marketing & Advertising Strategies E-Newsletter featuring day spa marketing best practices. 'The Spa Business Owner's Unfair Advantage.' www.spamarketing.ca [email protected]