Are your clients your most avid social media followers? Your most authentic referrers on social media (and everywhere)? If yes, well done! If not, why not? That's what we're looking at today. Quite simply, because Pareto's 80/20 rule just makes sense - applied here, 50 client followers, who value, invest in you, are likely more worthy of your invested time and energy, than 5,000 1-time visitors.
This month, Successiory e-News was focused on your Clients as your primary social media Audience. Even if you're not yet subscribed, if you've been following me on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook or Google Plus, you'd have gotten a sample. Here's an overview of what I shared. I hope it helps you to develop a Client Referral Culture online. This works best if you connect on a human level with your clients, even if you've never met face-to-face. ;)
Tip #1. Tell Your Clients & Ask
Make it clear. Let clients know that you'll be using social media to find others who need the same support you've given to them. Say you'd like to have them on board and ask if they'd be willing. Make it easy for them to become referrers, and let them know how you'll make it easy i.e. Referral Culture. These are just a few ways to invite your clients to connect and refer you on social media. Does any variation of these work?
- After a big 'win': "I'm so happy we got through this! I really enjoy this part. Do your peers have the same challenge(s). Invite them to find me on social media!"
- Respond to a 'Thank you' e-mail: "Of course! That's what I'm here for. Would you be willing to write a testimonial on <e.g. Facebook> and tell a few friends?"
- Closing workshops: "Thoroughly enjoy working with you all! Wasn't this great? If it's okay, follow me on <e.g. Twitter>? Tweet something you learned, today?"
If none of these work, think of what comes more naturally to you. Remember, your clients chose you, because they like you. It's the Entrepreneur's Edge.
Tip #2. Feature Your Clients
I first need to stress that you always remember your audience when choosing who you'll feature - that goes for your Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, blog and e-news communities. Once the client featured proves relevant to your followers, this works.
How do you feature clients? Again, ask. Ask what they'd like, or, feature what they're sharing most on their own social media communities. They'll realize they're appreciated, you'll be top of mind and their peers, your prospects, will get a glimpse of what it's like to work with you. (By the way, suppliers are often great referrers too, so consider them as well.)
Caution: If you've helped your client over a hurdle, unless they've provided a testimonial for you to share or given express permission, I would avoid sharing "look what they've done since working with me" content.
Tip #3. Highlight Shareables. Tagging & Mentions
By now, you're probably aware that Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and now even LinkedIn allow you to tag people and company pages in your posts. Use that!
Mentions and tags are very powerful connectors on social media. They have the effect of saying the 'mentioned' or 'tagged' person's name over a mic in a crowded room. It's great because you're also holding their attention with information they want. (Don't know how to do this? Book a 1-hour consulting session (see Short Term Options), and I'll show you how.)
Being featured does make your clients feel valued, but giving information they actually need, when they need it, is priceless. Highlighting content clients can share with a simple click means they get to help someone just by sharing it!
Caution: To prevent burnout, I recommend not tagging the same people everyday. Avoid bombarding them with content. Tagging works best if it's information they really want, and it happens occasionally.
Tip #4. Other Incentives. A Loyalty Program
What are your favourite loyalty programs? I like Porter's VIP and, frankly, those clients who love what I do for them so much that they get emotional. They always get a little extra out of me. The point is, just as you love being appreciated, so do your clients.
Can you give a little extra without putting out a lot of extra time, energy, resources? I think you can. I give my clients 10% (up to CA$100) of the first contract I get from anyone they refer to me, on social media or anywhere. Many of them don't know it, so it's a welcomed surprise, and they're happy to do it again.
I'm sure you can be more creative. Think about your relationship with your clients. What would make them feel 'warm and fuzzy' inside?
Take Action. Make it Happen.
Ready to go beyond "that was a nice article", to simply building it into your schedule? Your weekly activities? Let's chat. You've been to many seminars, webinars and courses, and yet you haven't taken action on half of them, right? Commit to one evening to making it happen. Book a session, join an upcoming workshop or simply add it to your calendar. Write in to let me know when you do (it will feel great!) and don't miss the next Successiory e-News!