Generating More Referrals For Your Home Services Business

happy customers make for more customer referrals
Chris Lonergan
Chris Lonergan April 3, 2024

Once you've made a customer happy, you should capitalize on that success.

If satisfied customers recommend your services to their friends, family, or colleagues, it not only brings in new business but also reinforces your reputation as a trustworthy contractor.

By taking a proactive approach instead of passively waiting for referrals, you'll spend less time searching for customers and more time working with new clients who already feel good about working with you.

Build Strong Relationships with Current Customers

The foundation of a successful referral strategy begins with building strong relationships with your customers. By delivering exceptional service and far exceeding expectations, you create a positive experience that customers will talk about.

When contractors get too busy, they sometimes forget the people behind the service call. Don't take your customers for granted.

Take the time to listen to their needs and go the extra mile to ensure their satisfaction.

Start With Asking For A Positive Review

Online reviews can help promote your business for years to come. When happy customers leave a Google review, it helps to influence future potential clients to trust you.

Simplify the process as much as possible for you and your customer.

To your customer - writing a review can be a bit of a hassle. By texting or emailing your recently satisfied client with the right links and relevant information, you're making the review process easier. The easier the process, the more likely they will be able to follow through.

For you and your business - completing initial outreach, following up with past happy customers, and monitoring for recent review activity can be time-consuming. Use an automated review management system (like the one all Footbridge Media clients use) to simplify your business life and more consistently work on your reviews without needing to stress about the manual labor.

Define Your Referral Program

Instead of just word-of-mouth leads, turn the ideas of people talking about your business into a proper referral program.

Developing an incentive-based referral program increases the likelihood of participation without any wasted out-of-pocket costs. Since you only pay out your referral rewards when a referral is successful, you're basically just paying for the lead after the job is done.

Your incentives should be strong enough to attract interest in interacting with you. They should reward both the previous happy customer and the new customer.

Having a structure to your referral program - like flyers, business cards, a dedicated page on your website with rules and a form - makes it easier to integrate into your overall contractor marketing plan. It also makes it much easier for your customers to use.

Possible Referral Reward Options

When crafting your referral rewards, you have options. It's important that you, as the business owner, lock in your options well ahead of time so that you can have consistent messaging about how you reward clients.

  • Cash Rewards — Cold hard cash is an old favorite. It's a dead simple way to reward your customers in a way that everyone always appreciates.
  • Local Gift Cards — Keeping it local and supporting other small businesses in your area is always appropriate. Local shops, restaurants, and service provider gift cards can be a fun incentive that keeps with the supporting local business vibe.
  • Added Value Services — Likely a better fit for new customers than past ones, but adding on an extra service can be a great incentive. HVACs can add on a year of tune-up services for a new HVAC installation. Electricians can add a free safety whole-home inspection. Find an added value service that benefits your customer, but that can also help to create a further relationship with your new customer.
  • Discounts On Service — This is also a better fit for your incoming client. A percentage or dollar discount can be a good reason for a referred customer make sure they are actively participating in your referral program.

It's also important to remember that, while you should be giving a thank you reward to both the referred party and the past customer referrer - they don't have to be the same exact reward. You can mix and match, like perhaps giving an added value service to your new customer and a local gift card to your past customer.

Just like your customer satisfaction and customer review processes, make your referral program a part of your business practices and everyday conversations with your clients.

Stay in Touch with Past Clients For Top-Of-Mind Awareness

Don't let past clients' contact information gather dust. Keeping in touch with them using social media, email newsletters, thank you cards, direct mailers, and holiday cards can be very easy.

By maintaining a connection, you maintain top-of-mind awareness. So the next time they need service or speak with a friend or family member who has a similar issue, you increase the likelihood of your name coming up again and earning that repeat or referral business.

Referral marketing should be a core component of every home services business. When done right, it is a low-cost, low-effort, and low-risk marketing tactic that can yield amazing results.

Take care of your customers and reward them for remembering your name. By building those relationships and having a well-structured referral program, you can generate more referrals and earn more business from new customers who are primed and ready for a good experience.

Ready to Take the Next Step? Let's Get Started

Start Getting Leads Now