by Matt Alderton | June 26, 2019
Word-of-mouth referrals are among the best sources of new business. To get them from your existing customers, popular wisdom goes, all you really need to do is ask.

Asking isn't enough, though, author Patrick McFadden suggests in an article for Business 2 Community. "It's been noted that, 'you get more referrals by asking.' While I believe this is true, most dismiss the approach of what to ask for," he says. "Asking for referrals can get you plenty, but the real point is to turn them into a new client."

Indeed, it's not just the ask that matters; it's what you ask for. "The mistake most people make in the business of referrals is to ask for leads or referrals, when they should be asking for introductions," McFadden continues. "If you want to make referrals a significant part of your lead generation, you need to start asking for introductions and not just a list of names."

The best time to ask a customer for an introduction, according to McFadden, is when they give you a compliment.

"All you need to do to get the introduction is to then ask them how well they know 'person x,' and whether they feel able to give you an introduction," he concludes.

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