Each and every year, polls taken of members in the commercial factoring industry evidence that roughly 50% of all new clients contracted for financing were the result of a referral. So factors know the value of referrals. Its literally half of their business. But what about you? Do referrals carry the same weight for you, the Factoring Consultants? Well, the answer to this question is “yes”. In fact, for many successful industry brokers, referrals provide nearly 100% of their commission-generating clientele. So with such importance, shouldn’t you have a well defined marketing program just for your referrers?
Referral Marketing Basics
As consultants, you probably have some idea of what referral marketing is. In fact, to the factor that you refer business to, you are a valued member of its referral program. But how exactly do we define referral marketing for you, the broker in this arena?
At it’s most basic level, referral marketing occurs whenever someone shares your business services with their friends, family, and colleagues. It’s a way for a your business to grow exponentially by leveraging a network of “partners”. In some instances, this will include existing clients you have provided your services to. Most members of this “referral partnership” however, will be completely unrelated individuals. To you, referral marketing is like many other marketing channels and its vital for you to pay attention to the user (referrer) experience. And, due to it’s importance to your overall success as a consultant in the industry, don’t you think you should develop a well thought out program to support a powerful referral system and put it to work?
Developing Your Referral System
A referral marketing program for your business as a financial consultant should provide you with a structured and sustainable flow of new SQL or Sales Qualified Leads. At their core, all referral systems or programs rely on word-of-mouth marketing or WOM. Sixty-Four (64%) of marketing executives believe WOM is the most important form of marketing. That statistic coincides with the fact that 92% of all people are more likely to make a positive purchase decision if that decision is recommended by a friend.
For factoring consultants, some word-of-mouth marketing depends strictly on you. It is especially effective when teamed with face-to-face networking, such as when you are enjoying some after hours Chamber of Commerce events or attending S.C.O.R.E. seminars that you will also attend where you will meet small business owners that could become clients. But you, as just one person, can only attend so many events and functions. There are only so many hours in a day. You need to develop more “fans” to promote you and if that seems to be “out of your control”…it is NOT. There are many ways to further your word-of-mouth marketing strategies. In fact, for IACFB trained factoring consultants, one word-of-mouth program stands out among the rest. And that is the Sponsored Agents Program at IACFB (International Association of Commercial Finance Brokers).
Is the Sponsored Agents Program a Brand Ambassador Program?
Though there are many ways to promote word-of-mouth marketing results and make them work for you, one of the most powerful (and sophisticated) methods is by recruiting affiliates, influencers, and ambassadors. The IACFB Sponsored Agents Program is a perfect example of a well-perfected Brand Ambassador Program. In fact, this type of program is so important to your success as a freelance factoring broker / consultant, the IACFB provides brokers with an entire training module dedicated to this marketing system in Factoring 202: Marketing at the IACFB Factoring Broker Academy.
With the IACFB Sponsored Agents Program, we show you how to…
- RECRUIT: promote your “Ambassador” program and select candidates that you train as “agents”
- PROVIDE: your ambassadors with the tools and guidance (training and websites) they need to promote your products/services effectively
- CREATE: unique and creative Commission Programs and Contests rewarding your ambassadors/agents for their hard work and keep them engaged
Sponsored Agents (ambassadors) are significantly different than typical influencers you will enlist as part of your overall referral network. Candidates for your Sponsored Agents program relationships are generally exhibit much more long-term relationship tendencies than influencer short-term referral relationships. Social media influencers will usually only promote your factoring services in one or two social post or one short marketing campaign. With the IACFB Sponsored Agents program, your ambassadors will usually promote you services for a year, two or three years, or more. In fact, once your agents/ambassadors land their first deal and earn a residual, monthly commission, that agent will likely stay in your program indefinitely.
Sponsored agents / ambassadors will have become familiar with your factoring products since they have been provided with IACFB’s Boot Camp agent training through you, They have become highly knowledgeable and can use their own perspectives and words when sharing how your factoring services work with others. For you the Freelance Factoring Consultant, the Sponsored Agents Program translates into a powerful promotion. It can be scaled and expanded limitlessly and is one that is infinitely more effective than almost any other standard marketing campaign. IACFB’s history and their use of broker / ambassadorships, provide real, powerful testimony that this unique program generates results. This program creates an endless stream of sales qualified leads coming your way that will, in turn, insure more commission-generating client decisions that will benefit your consulting business.