We’re going to talk about giving your staff an opportunity to stimulate referrals.
In a previous post I advised you to break down and dissect all of the different ways in which you give your existing patients/clients an opportunity to refer to you. I discussed the idea of giving your staff an opportunity to contribute and mastermind with you on how to make this easier.
When you put your staff in a position to communicate (your) value to your existing patients/clients and then the freedom and ability to stimulate referrals for you while you’re doing what you do best…you have LEVERAGE!
So, question #1: Are you open to it?
Are you open to the idea of having a front desk person, a receptionist, an assistant or office manager help you stimulate referrals? My bet is you said, “Yes!”
How many different ways or opportunities does your staff have to stimulate referrals during the course of the day? (By the way, I recommend that you steer clear of directly asking for a referral…there are much smarter ways to go about this.)
Front Desk idea:
So, let’s assume you never directly ask for referrals, but instead, through education, internal marketing initiatives, handouts, research, newsletters, conversation(s), updates, etc. your staff member, (assuming they sit at the front desk), can welcome each client/patient to the office and stimulate a referral by sharing news, information, updates, or even research with these patients/clients as they come in.
They can ask a very simple, but leading questions, like: “Hey Mary. It’s great to see you today. I don’t know if you know this, but a dental update just came in through the federal government. Did you know that seeing your dentist twice a year reduces cavities by 37%? I bet you we could both think of 10 people we know that never make it to the dentist twice per year. By the way, would you like to schedule your next visit now?” (This is obviously a dental example).
For a chiropractor: “Hey Mary. It’s great to see you today. Today we’re talking about headaches and chiropractic. Did you know Duke University did a study and found that chiropractic was more effective at treating headaches then any other treatment method? Do you know anyone that gets headaches?”
Notice, you’re not asking for a referral, you’re simply asking them a very common question that would follow a research update.
If you’re a financial advisor, you might give a research update about the market, retirement planning, 401K’s, etc.
Now, after your patient/client say something like “Yes I have a few friends who…” don’t ask them for their friends contact information. Instead, have an educational piece ready on that topic and give it your patient/client.
Tell them to give it to their friend, family member, etc. who has the “issue” and let them know their friend/family member can contact you at anytime for a free consult on this “issue”. Of course, make sure you have your contact information on the piece!
Think of all of the different ways your staff can passively and proactively interact with your patients/clients to stimulate referrals on a regular basis without just directly asking!
To Your Success,
Dr. Len Schwartz