Building Profitable Referral Relationships: The Importance of Tracking Results

GettyImages-859129286As your referral relationships evolve, you want to track a wide range of information. For instance, make sure you know how many referrals you’re getting from each source, together with the average fee and retention rate per referral received.

If one referral source is providing prospects that generally turn into long-term, high-fee clients, you obviously want to do everything in your power to keep that referral source happy (we’ll talk about how to do that later). Conversely, you might want to reconsider your relationship with a referral source whose clients only want, say, a basic will or a power of attorney, or whose decisions are based on your price rather than your value.

You also want to make sure you’re measuring expectations. If you hosted a joint event with your referral source, were both your and the allied professional’s expectations met? Do you even know what the expectations and goals are? If you do, are they being met consistently?

If your referral source expects you to provide referrals to him or her, be sure to track that. A word of caution: tit for tat relationships can become problematic. If it’s all about “who’s getting the better deal” the relationship might not be a healthy one. This is not the relationship you want nor the type of relationship we have been describing.

Finally, whenever you discuss results with your referral source, be sure to talk about future opportunities to strengthen and grow the relationship.

Next time we’ll talk about another piece of information you should be tracking—touches.

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