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Feb 16, 2008 10:44 pm

I have been in the biz almost 6 years, indy almost 1 year. However, year to date no referrals. What do I have to do to get my biz even 50% referral based? My good friend CPA who wants to be an LPL partner doesn’t even refer much. Valuable input is appreciated.

Feb 16, 2008 11:06 pm

How many meetings have you had this year?  How many times have you explicitly asked for referrals?  I’m willing to bet that the answer is close to zero.

Feb 17, 2008 9:15 pm

so I suppose you ask and you get plenty huh?

Feb 17, 2008 10:48 pm

Asking is the way to get the process started.

  If you don't ask, you get exactly what you're entitled to get - zero.
Feb 17, 2008 10:56 pm

“so I suppose you ask and you get plenty huh?”

  Correct.   Also, one thing that I have noticed is that when my phone rings with an unsolicited referral, it is virtually always from someone who has given me solicited referrals in the past.
Feb 17, 2008 11:52 pm

I also need to improve significantly in this area.  So for those of you who are successful, do you ask casually or regularly?  Has anyone found success with some type of formal program or system? 

Feb 18, 2008 12:26 am

Dark Knight,

  While there are things you can "do" to bring it up, it just isn't effective by itself.   You must make it a STANDARD PRACTICE to ask for referrals.  Why?  It's the way you do business.  Just like asking about risk tolerance and getting net worth figures, you ask about referrals each and every time.   Now, there are ways for you to "set the stage" and plant seeds, but it starts with a commitment to the process and not deviating from it.
Feb 18, 2008 2:44 am

I’m all ears.  When you say Standard Practice do you mean at the end of every client meeting?  every phone call with clients?  with prospects?  I was taught at Jones ask every prospect and client all the time.  Since I didn’t have clients and didn’t have the guts to ask prospects I have never gotten into the habit of asking for referals.  There is always an excuse and I am ready to stop making them. 

Feb 18, 2008 3:01 am

When I have an appointment, I ask them what they expect to get out of the appointment.

I then state what I expect out of them as well. 1.  I expect them to complete a fact-finder 2.  I expect them to be courteous with my time by cancelling in advance if something comes up as soon as they are able. 3.  If they are happy with the information and services that I provide, I expect to be introduced to 2-3 hundred of your friends, family and work associates!  [insert chuckle here].  But seriously, this is how I do business.  I find that it's easier for me as a business owner, and you will have a big influence in the financial lives of those you refer to work with me.    Is that fair?  [nod your head in affirmation]