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Action Triggers- 5 Moments You Can Ask for Referrals

by Bill Cates
Action Triggers: When to Ask for Referrals

Generating more and better referrals begins with your awareness. When you are fully aware of the opportunities that occur almost daily, then you will be able to leverage those opportunities – to either promote referrals or ask for referrals.

Action Triggers: When to Ask for Referrals

An action trigger is something your prospect or client does or says that can trigger a referral-generating action on your part. This issue of the Referral Minute will highlight 5 things that can prompt you to promote referrals and introductions.

Of course, you have to be careful to not be obnoxious about this. You may get 4-5 action triggers in one appointment. Clearly, you don’t want to ask for referrals on every single one.

Before I give you a list of some of the most obvious action triggers, remember that action triggers can be a two-way street.  An action trigger can be something a prospect or clients says – or it can come from a value-seeking question you ask your prospects and clients.

  1. Prospect appreciates you contacting them to take care of something that they’ve been putting off.  Let them know that you’re “never too busy to see if you can be of service to their friends, family, and colleagues.”
  2. Prospect finds your first meeting extremely helpful. Remember to say, “Don’t keep me a secret.”
  3. Prospect makes a decision to work with you. “You’ve made an important decision. Let’s see if we can identify a few folks who deserve the opportunity to also make an educated decision.”
  4. Prospect or Client mentions a friend, family member, or colleague – wondering if they could benefit from knowing you.  “Can we talk about your uncle Ernie for a minute?  If we can craft the right approach, would you feel comfortable introducing me to him?”
  5. Client provides a strong recognition of value, such as complimenting your ability to listen well or that they always feel better about their situation after meeting with you.  “I’m glad you see the value of our relationship. With that in mind, I was hoping we could identify a few folks who should at least know about the important work I do. I have a few ideas I’d like to suggest. May I run them by you, just to see what you think or who it triggers for you?”


As I stated before, these are some of the more obvious action triggers. In the comments section below, tell me what you look for or things you’ve heard your clients say that have triggered you to promote or ask for referrals.

Referral Coach