Grow Your Fitness Business By Building Your Referral Community
Networking is defined as “the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically: the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business,” according to Merriam-Webster dictionary. Key phrases of this definition are “productive relationships” and “exchange of information.” By forming productive relationships with fellow colleagues and associates, you can increase your business referrals in multiple ways. Also, having additional sources of information exchange can increase your clients’ wealth of knowledge. This article will provide 5 tips on how to build a community through networking in order to take your business to the next level.
#1. Build Your Power Team. Make a list of people in similar industries that you believe can enhance your business. As a Registered Dietitian, I’ve connected with Chiropractors, Personal Trainers, Gyms, Therapists, Image Consultants, Sports Medicine Doctors, Exercise Physiologists, Personal Chefs, Insurance Representatives, and more in order to have a team of people whom I can refer my clients to and whom refer to me.
#2. Make The Initial Connection. Contact 2-3 people in each of these industries. Set up an initial meeting to see if you have similar views/practices. A thirty-minute meeting works wonders and can establish a long-lasting referral source.
#3. Ask Not What They Can Do For You, But What You Can Do For Them. Find out how you can be a referral source for this person. Ask what key words/phrases your clients may say which could trigger a referral. Even offer to keep their business cards on display or put their logo on your website under a community page or referral page.
#4. Establish Your Who, What, Why. Have a clear idea of what you offer, who/what clients would best fit with your services/practice, and why you are different than others in your industry – what sets you apart. This was your new networking partner can have an idea of people to refer to you. For example, I receive many referrals from my networking community who instantly think of me when one of their clients mentions nutrition, weight-loss, and food allergies. It’s a win-win situation with referrals flying back and forth between us.
#5. Follow-Up. Keep in contact with your new referral source at least every quarter in order to maintain the connection you have made. When receiving a referral, send a “thank you” to the referral source. Giving is just as good as receiving.
Establishing relationships with people is important in order to build your networking community, grow your referral sources, and enhance your clients’ experience by having referrals to offer them. What goes around comes around and when we have a community of referrals, we truly can optimize our business and our practice.