Stop Asking for Referrals! Book Offers New Paradigm for Earning New Business

Oct 15, 2012, 09:00 ET from Impact Communications

ROCHESTER, N.Y., Oct. 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Successful advisors know that the way to build a financial service business is referrals. According to many referral experts, asking "good" clients the famous question "who do you know that needs my services" is a smart move. But according to Stephen Wershing, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and president of The Client Driven Practice, that approach backfires.  In his forthcoming book, Stop Asking for Referrals: A Revolutionary New Strategy for Building a Financial Service Business that Sells Itself (McGraw Hill, October 2012, 240 pages, $40.00, ISBN-13: 978-0071808194), Wershing details the new and natural way to attract referrals – without asking.

"Studies have shown that the reasons clients refer business is not to benefit the professional, but to benefit themselves," says Wershing.  "So, asking a client if they know anyone is the wrong approach. That makes it about us. Make the process about benefiting the client, and referrals will flow," Wershing says. 

In 10 informative chapters, Wershing explains why the assumptions most business people make about referrals is wrong – and how to change their thinking to result in winning more referrals without asking. 

  • In Chapter 1, Wershing begins creating a case for why asking for referrals in the traditional way business people have been trained to do has to stop. 
  • In Chapter 2, Wershing reviews some of the research on how and why referrals happen, which conclusively refutes that getting referrals is simply a matter of asking.
  • Chapters 3 and 4 work toward helping professionals clearly, accurately and precisely define their target markets – not simply "retirees," "mass affluent" or "women" – and effectively, concisely and clearly articulate their value propositions. 
  • Chapter 5 focuses on testing what professionals think they know about themselves by going straight to the source – existing clients – and engaging them in the process. 
  • Chapters 6 and 7 are concerned with "Owning a Spot in the Client's Brain" by living and breathing your value proposition so that when an existing client hears a story that relates to your expertise, they will immediately think of you – and promoting that new identity. 
  • Chapter 8 details what Wershing calls "the new referral conversation" which entails changing the paradigm through which we have come to think about referrals. Wershing teaches a practical approach to replacing the old "who do you know?" question with getting advice and introductions.
  • In Chapter 9, Wershing discusses the ways that centers of influence can and should be activated to generate referrals. 
  • Lastly, Chapter 10 brings it all together and helps professionals create a referral marketing strategy.   

Stop Asking for Referrals: A Revolutionary New Strategy for Building a Financial Service Business that Sells Itself will soon be available through national and online booksellers.  The book is written in accessible language and is designed to engage any advisor who wants to successfully grow her or his business. 

About Stephen Wershing

Stephen Wershing, CFP® is president of The Client Driven Practice, a Rochester, NY-based financial services coaching firm.  Wershing coaches financial advisors to be more effective and successful, and attract more clients and referrals by developing more client-connected and client-driven practices.  His process of collecting systematic and objective client feedback and using it to reorient an advisor's practice effectively engages an advisor's best clients to drive the strategic plan of the business.  He consults with financial professionals on a full range of practice management issues, including strategic differentiation, client advisory boards, and implementing technology. Wershing entered the investment and financial planning industry in 1987.  His most recent executive positions include President of Ensemble Financial Services from 2002 – 2010, and Chief Operating Officer of Wall Street Financial Group from 1998 – 2002.

Wershing has been quoted in many trade and popular publications, including Financial Planning magazine, On Wall Street magazine, Investment Advisor magazine, Financial Advisor magazine, Investment News and USA Today.  He has presented to industry groups including the National Broker-Dealer Conference of the Financial Planning Association and the Investment Advisor Magazine Wealth Advisor Summit.  In addition to articles he pens for his Client Driven Practice blog, Wershing is also a regular contributor to and

Learn more about Stephen Wershing and access his Client Driven Practice blog at Listen to a "Best Practices" Audio Interview with book author and referral expert Stephen Wershing

SOURCE Impact Communications