Increase Your Referrals With These 3 Key Elements

As a business owner, I love referrals!  When students refer their friends and family it really reinforces that what I am doing is making a difference in their lives.

When a prospective student walks in to your school because they have been referred by one of your current students, the enrollment process is so much easier, wouldn’t you agree?  That person is ALREADY pre-sold! They know what to expect, what your tuition rate is and they want what you have to offer-all because one of your students is a raving fan.

So what are the keys to developing a business that drives referrals?

Here are three key elements you need:

1. Referrals Through Extraordinary Service

If there is one thing you can count on, it is this:  If your students are only “satisfied” with your level of service, they will not be telling people about you.  Go above and beyond when it comes to providing your students quality service.  Think about how you interact with current students and prospective students, then ask yourself what can you do, and do well, that will make people want to do business with you and refer  friends and family to you!

2. The Power of Asking

Many school owners just don’t ask for referrals.  Whether it’s due to embarrassment or just being uncomfortable asking for them, those owners lose out on a huge avenue of marketing their business.

If you hesitate to ask for referrals think about this- you are improving people’s lives through martial arts.  They are becoming more physically fit, developing higher levels of confidence and self-esteem, your students will want to help you, but only if you ask.

3. Give Appreciation for Referrals

If you want to receive continuous referrals, make sure you give proper thanks to those who refer business to you.
A phone call or a letter will go a long way in building great relations with your student’s and let them know how much you value and appreciate their efforts to send you their friends and family.

To help you get started here are 2 referral systems you can implement today.

1.    Tiered Referral Program
As a student refers more people to your business they receive bigger and better gifts.  I have enclosed a letter that you can mail to your students that outlines this program.

2.    Karate Bucks
Although this idea has been around for a while, I believe it is a solid method of rewarding your students for their referrals.  For every referral you can give out a $5, $10, or $25 Karate bucks that can be used towards Pro-Shop items or to pay for a test or to apply towards their tuition or however you would live to structure it.

And here is the letter template that I told you about!  Feel free to use it as is or change it up to suit your needs.

I have an offer you can’t refuse…  Well, you could but after reading this letter why would you want to?

Dear Main Street Karate students and Parents,

Ok, do I have your attention?  Are you ready to know what could possibly be so great about this offer?  I’ll get to that but not just yet!

This year, Main Street Karate has had two “Buddy Days”, class times where you can bring in a friend and share what you have been learning here.  While the days have been great, and I appreciate those of you who brought in your friends, I would like to “turn it up a notch”.  Why, you ask?  Simply, when you bring in a friend for one class, it’s a great way to introduce them to the academy but doesn’t always give them a good “picture” of all the great benefits they can get through the martial arts.  The benefits that I’m sure you have seen in yourself or your child.  Better concentration, balance and focus, getting stronger physically and mentally plus a more positive outlook.  Who do you know that could use those benefits?  Just about everybody, right?

Most of you know about our “VIP Referral Program”.  I’ve talked about it in the newsletters and it’s also in “The Ultimate Success Guide for Achieving Your Goals with Main Street Karate” (see me if you don’t have a copy).  The VIP referral program rewards students who refer friends and family members when they sign up to our academy.  Well, for the next 90 days, I’m going to change it up just a little…

Enclosed with this letter are five gift certificates for our academy.  It’s recommended that you give them to friends, friends of friends, family members, your banker, doctor, lawyer, accountant, teacher or their children!  Basically anyone that you think would enjoy training here with us!

Here’s how it works.  Simply write your name on each certificate.  Then, give them out to your friends and family.  The recipients may then come in and train at our academy for one month free of charge.

After their certificate expires, they’ll have the option of enrolling into one of our programs.  If they do, we’ll give you a point.  We’ll keep track of your score throughout the next 90 days and then assign you a prize based upon the number of students you get to join before July 31st, 2011.  Just look at some of the awesome gifts you can receive:

Students that enroll                Prize
1 student                $10 pro shop certificate
2 students                $25 pro shop certificate
3 students                $50 pro shop certificate
4 students                $100 pro shop certificate
5 students                Sparring gear (full set)
6 students                10 private lessons ($325 value)
7 students                6 free months of classes($600 value)
8 students                1 free year of classes ($1200 value)
9 students                1 free year of class + 12 private lessons ($1620 value)
10 students              2 free years of classes

Ok, make sure your names are on the gift certificates, make that list of people and Get ready, set, Go!!!

Thank you for your continued support.


John Smith
Master Instructor

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