Having happy customers should rank near the top of the list for all of us looking to keep our jobs and employment, but, time after time, we see customer service thrown to the curve. Admittedly, it can be difficult as each customer presents their own unique challenges. There are simple ways to improve how customers see you and whether they feel the need to encourage others to use your service.
You may argue that number one when it comes to your job is to make money, but without the repeat or referring customer, the money coming in can slow to a trickle. Creating an experience where your customer not only is loyal to you but feels the need to encourage others to use your service should not only be your goal but is incredibly rewarding when it happens. Take John, for example, who opened a mortgage company in 2002. He quickly discovered that on order to make money, he needed the phones to ring. He also regretfully found out that the only way to do that was to run expensive ads in all kinds of media. But the part he got right from the very beginning was to know that his number one job was to create an experience for his customers, and it was not long before some of the calls coming in from people who had never heard his radio commercial or saw his newspaper ad. These were new customers who had been referred to him by his current or recent customers. These customers cost nothing to acquire compared to the hundreds of dollars it cost to bring new people in via advertising.
So you have done a great job creating an experience. Will customers refer others on their own? Some may immediately refer others after their experience with you, but many need just a little nudge. The best time to get a referral from your customer is immediately after you have successfully closed their deal. A follow up call the following day is a good way to go about this, and so is an email that they can easily forward to their friends. Mailing business cards may seem so 1990's but to this day, you see people opening their desk drawer to pass a card along to a coworker.
Most of all, be sure you ask for their help. Customers are not good at jumping to the conclusion that you need their assistance, so it is up to you to give them that friendly nudge. Literally asking for their help in the simplest way to put this ball in motion, and since they are happy with the job you have done, it makes asking that much easier and in almost every case, they are eager to do so.