You decided to become a wellness professional because of your passion to help people improve the quality of their own lives through improving their health. However, I bet what you didn’t ClientRefferals1count on was that you also needed to become a skilled marketer and sales person if you want to succeed and enjoy financial stability.

Growing your business involves the ongoing selling of yourself and the promotion of your services. That task feels very uncomfortable to most wellness practitioners, so much so that services and advice are often given away for free.

So how do you grow your business and acquire clients without having to continuously sell yourself?

It’s easy. Let other people sell your services for you!

Testimonials are one of the most common forms of marketing. How many times have you asked for a referral to a restaurant or hotel and taken the word of your friend or family member without doing any other research? Think of Yelp.

Opinions of others posted online is one of the most trusted forms of advertising, according to a recent Nielsen Global Online Consumer Survey. Ninety percent of consumers surveyed said that they trust recommendations from people they know, while 70 percent trust consumer opinions posted online.

If you do not have a strong referral campaign implemented in your business, you are surely leaving money on the table and probably having to work too hard to get clients. Your best client getting resources are your current clients.

Unfortunately, unless you instruct your clients to refer you to their friends, family members and/or colleagues and give them explicit instruction on how to refer, they will simply talk about you and how great you are. Although that is great to hear and it might generate a couple referrals we want you to get as many as you can!

People need to be told exactly what to do. In order for that to happen you need to ask them to refer to you. It’s important to change up your referral system from time to time. Here are some examples you can use in your own business.

BuildReferralBusiness#1 – Make referrals a condition of doing business with you.

Yes, it can be rather uncomfortable to ask for a referral but if you make it part of your sales script and make it conditional upon you getting the client results then it’s much easier.

You can say “If I do everything we’ve discussed and after you lose the first 10 pounds will you provide me with the names and contact numbers of 2-3 friends or family members who could also use my help?”

Set the precedent so the clients know what they are in for at the beginning.

# 2 – Thank you postcards.

Similar to the thank you card except you use postcards that are pre-printed and already stamped. The postcards are printed with a special offer. You can hand 2-3 of them to clients after they finish their sessions with you or they hit a meaningful goal. “Hey, because you were so successful, I have a gift for you and your closet friends. I am offering X special. Just address these 3 postcards to whoever you think would benefit the most from my services and I will happily pop them in the mail for you”

You should also offer the client the same deal. “As a thank you for being such a great client I want to give you $XX off your next 12 sessions too”. It’s important to make sure that your current clients are receiving the same savings that you are offering their friends and family. If they don’t get something out of referring, they are highly unlikely to do so.

# 3 – Refer and save.BuildReferralBusiness2

This is an old one but a good one. You can set up a standard system where the client saves $25 for every referral they send your way. They get the credit regardless of whether the referral buys or not.

Now, I know what you are thinking. What if they send you bogus referrals? However, if you’ve gotten success for that client and have built a solid relationship chances are they won’t do that. You can create a refer and save card and give it to your client with their program, like a stamp card you get when you buy coffee.

Any way you look at it, sales is part of the job. What’s important to keep in mind is that you find a way to sell your services that works for you, where you feel comfortable. When that happens you are authentically communicating your passion and it doesn’t feel like selling anymore.

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Lori Kennedy PTS, RHN

With over 10 years of experience in the fitness and nutrition world, Lori is responsible for the sales, marketing and promotions for WOW! Weight Loss Inc. 

Lori started her career as a personal trainer while attending Concordia University in Montreal. At the same time, she was suffering from severe stomach issues which went undiagnosed by many doctors over a two-year period. Fortunately, Lori was introduced to naturopath Dr. Shelley Averbach, who developed a Candida protocol for Lori to follow during her time away at school. Lori credits Shelley for literally “saving her life” and introducing her to the power of food. 

Lori quickly established herself as an expert personal trainer and fitness program developer. She was one of six team members responsible for the build out and start up of The Pavilion, a 20,000 square foot fitness complex.

Although she was successful in her fitness management career, her passion was with food and nutrition. Lori returned to school to study holistic nutrition. While managing the nutrition department for all three locations of the Womens Fitness Clubs of Canada, fellow nutritionists and personal trainers sought out Lori’s successful weight-loss program and her advice on sales and marketing their own businesses. 

While Lori’s professional career in holistic nutrition grows, she stays true to her passion. This has led her to mentor over 250 nutritionists, dietitians and personal trainers within Canada to create weight-loss programs that improve client compliancy, increase sales and better market their businesses.

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