by Mary Cantando, Founder of The Woman’s Advantage, Guest Contributor

There is no greater sign of confidence from a customer than a referral. A referral is an opportunity both to win a new customer and to make your referring client look like a superstar. And that is precisely why you need to have a solid plan to follow up on every referral you receive.

Here is a five-step process to follow up on referrals.

Five Steps to Follow Up on Referrals

  1. Ask the Referrer for “Inside Info.”

Ask the referrer why they thought to make this referral. What is going on with this prospect that makes this a good time for you to meet with them?

2. Ask the Referrer for the Best Method of Contact.

Would the referrer like to schedule a meeting where you can all sit down together? Or make a call to let the prospect know you’ll be reaching out? Or send an email connecting the two of you?

3. Make the Initial Call.

After the connection is made, it’s up to you to make the initial call to get the ball rolling. Don’t drag your feet. Do this immediately after the connection is made.

4. Don’t be Afraid to Make Multiple Calls.

Studies show that an average of five outreaches (email, voicemail) must be made before a message is returned. Don’t stop too early. You may be only one call away from the biggest account of your life.

5. Circle Back to the Referrer.

After you’ve made the connection, keep the referrer in the loop as to what’s going on. And be sure to say “Thank You” every opportunity you have.