Referrals are the lifeblood of many businesses. A referral is worth many times the value of a cold call. So we are all overloaded with referrals, right? Maybe. Maybe not. Ok, what can we do to encourage people to give us referrals?
First thing we can do is ask. Ask everyone you do business with. Every time. For example: you are at a restaurant and have been served by a nice waitress or waiter. Tell her you really appreciate the good service she (or he) gave you. Ask if she knows anyone else who gives as good service who might be looking for some extra income. Give her a good tip. You are at the hospital, again you receive good service. Again you ask. A cab driver certainly would know people who might want to either receive your service or wish to provide it. Ask.
In your travels, you meet other people who might need the services of the people you interact with. Someone looking for a good restaurant could be sent to that nice waitress or waiter. Someone needing a cab might be sent to the cab company or the actual cabby you talked with. You are looking for referrals, give referrals.
Be the type of person that others wish to refer people to. Be kind, give good service. Be polite. Be knowledgeable. Be easy to deal with. Do what you say you will do. Go the extra mile. Help that client find a home for those 11 puppies when the dog she thought was a boy gives birth. (It happened, my district manager took one of them). So if you want referrals, ask for them and provide the type of service that encourages people to refer people to you.