As a credit union owner, you probably understand that new business often comes from business contacts and happy patrons. However, not every bank or credit union uses that knowledge to offer a robust referral program. We are going to explain some strategies for bringing in more referrals, who will be excited to use your services.
Of course, you can’t just sit and wait for referrals to come around. You must be proactive and ask for those referrals. Many people find this overwhelming at the beginning, but after doing so a few times it can become second nature. As a bank owner, you should be looking for referrals in your own network. Everyone else working with the company should be doing the same thing. This is an easy strategy to start, just talk to people you already know, such as friends and family members. Then move on to clients and contacts.
Sure, most people assume they know what a bank does. However, they may not know all the professional services that you offer. This can be true of strangers as well as people who are more prominent in our lives. Of course, you don’t want to go off on a tangent that might be boring for the other party, but a short response that you have ready can be a very useful thing. Keep it simple but make sure you explain things in a way where it will be remembered.
It can be simple to network and discuss business with someone in the same or a similar industry. However, that should not be the end of the process. Another bank is not going to refer over customers that they want themselves. Instead, consider cross-promoting with other types of companies. Speak with companies that are loosely related, but that do not offer the same things you do. Then refer back to them to make it a long-lasting relationship.
While there are many digital ways to solicit referrals, nothing beats the old-fashioned face-to-face conversation. Check out Toastmasters, Chamber of Commerce, and other groups that are designed for this sort of thing. You can also keep abreast of any events that fall under this category. You’ll be promoting to other business owners, who will then promote you with the understanding that you’ll do the same. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.
LinkedIn is a great option for business to business marketing and can work well for your bank or credit union. The website is built for this kind of thing and has a great tool for triggering those referrals. Of course, you can also use other social media sites for this. Twitter and Facebook can both be excellent option for finding new contacts. Of course, you still need to spend time on face-to-face but social media can be a supplement to what you do offline.
If you want something, giving it first is an excellent option. When someone receives some sort of gift, they often want to reciprocate that gift quickly. This is the same when it comes to referrals. Make it a point to contact someone you know and offer them a referral. They will almost certainly agree and then do the same for you and your own credit union or bank.
Whether you implement one of these options or a few of them, it can help you build your credit union more quickly. Another way to do that is by trying out the system at FinancialRefer. It makes managing a referral system a breeze.