We are all looking for ways to get new leads.
Look around, the people in your sessions are your greatest fans, they believe in you and what you do. They may even be, your ideal client. They should be. What if you could have more people just like them?
Is there any client that you would want to clone? Remember— it isn’t just about the kids here, it is about the parents too. How do you get great parents, great kids and long time customers that believe what you do, walking through your door?
Leverage the people you already have to find more leads like them. Here is this process broken down into steps.
Identify 10 Ideal Clients
Identify 10 of your Ideal Clients, these are the parents & kids who believe in what you do, they are walking-talking billboards. They may be other coaches, parents, or staff members. Write down these 10.
Schedule a Meeting
Block off time to spend with each of these clients. It shouldn’t take more than 15-20 minutes, but it needs to be private. It can be either on the phone or in person. Tell them in advance what the conversation is about.
“Hey (NAME) I was wondering if I could speak with you for about 10 minutes later today or this week? You are such a great client and member that I wanted to pick your brain a little bit about what we are doing here, but also if you had any recommendations of who would be a good fit for our (Gym/Facility/Family atmosphere)”
Note: If they say yes, schedule the time. If they say no, make a note of it.
Ask & Be Transparent
This is the most critical step.
It is as simple as asking. Be completely transparent about what you are trying to do.
Here is a script for you to tweak :
“Hey __(Customer Name)___, so I think you and (Athlete’s Name) are such a great fit for our business and what we are trying to do here. You have been with us for awhile now and I wanted to know how we can improve and what you think about our values and what we offer” (Let them talk first. Get their feedback and address it)
“Well, we definitely appreciate your feedback, so please keep it coming”
“Since you are literally our ideal client, and I really wish I could clone you and your family, I was wondering if you could possibly help me out? We really want to grow our business, but not with just anyone…with people like you…are you interested?”
“That is great, I was wondering if you could give us 3 names of people who you would love to see in this program with you, or maybe even a coach that you think would be open to what we have to offer” (Client gives you a couple names)
Note: It isn’t essential that you get the referrals contact information in this approach
“Thank you so much, would you be willing to bring them to a session in the next week, completely free? That is essentially all you would have to do” (Answer: Yes)
Note: A new lead could possibly bale on you the first time, but likely won’t bale on a friend- try to get them to come together for the first time
“You are the best, I will follow up with you in a couple days if I haven’t heard anything (Promotes accountability)– but I really appreciate your effort in this, and the great part is, when your friends come in we will do the rest of the work. If one of them (Purchase/join/etc) we will give you a gift for your hard work every time”
Note: A gift isn’t essential, but if you are going to give one, you need to know what it is in advance and pay it EVERY TIME
This is a critical component of every referral program, and many ‘drop the ball’ here. Schedule a time to follow up with this client. It can be days later, but no more than a week. If you haven’t seen their referrals in your sessions, it is now good to ask for contact information.
This process is just that, a process. Write it down and document it for months and years to come.
Do you have a referral strategy that rocks?
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Author: Julie Hatfield
Julie is the Executive Director of the International Youth Conditioning Association (IYCA). She grew up as an athlete and played collegiate softball at Juniata College. She currently owns and operates her own youth fitness business pouring into young athletes. Her areas of expertise are youth sport performance, youth fitness business and softball training/instruction. Julie grew up on a dairy farm and can challenge the best of the best in a cow-milking contest. 😉