Monday, 25 July 2016

Point of Sale Referrals (increase retention with sales!) - Guest Post

This is a guest post from David Reeves of Promote Leisure, who presented at the inaugural Sales & Retention Convention earlier this year.

I want to share with you one of the key focus points that was discussed on the day; how to present and get lots of “Point of Sale Referral”, which will translate into sales, if prospected correctly. 

Point of Sale (POS) referral is to ask a new member for the names of friends, family or work colleagues who may be interested in joining the club. This is done at the moment when the excited new member joins, hence why it is called “Point of Sale” referral.

It is really important for sales teams to understand why it is critical to mention POS, as it has real benefits both for the new member, and for the business. There are many reason as to why POS referral is more effective than traditional referral, such as:

  • People are excited when they join
  • They are face to face with you, therefore it is easier to ask for names
  • Some people are anxious about coming to the gym on their own at first
  • You are offering a gift of a free pass or two

Let us assume that a club will give away a guest pass for a name, number and email of a new member’s friend… How do we collect pre-qualified good local referrals from the new member? The key is how the POS is presented.

The POS pitch process needs to start during the initial tour, when the Membership Adviser (MA) asks the prospect if they will ever come to the club with a friend or family member. This sets the scene for the next step, once they’re joining.

The MA will refer back to the tour asking if they would like £X amount of free guest passes. The amount varies depending on how much and how many passes the club wants to give away.

It is important to create scarcity with the passes, by saying that “we only have a few that are given away each month”. If the new member wants to give the names for the passes at a later date, the MA should respond and say “we need the names today, as the passes are limited”. The MA should stress that it is a great opportunity for the new member to come to the club with a local friend/work colleague.

A good line for the MA to say is “If you are unable to think of 3 names, just sign through the others and this gives me permission to re-allocate them to anyone we choose. Alternatively, please have a last minute think whilst I am processing the membership”.

This is called scarcity and fear of loss, which is to sign something away and lose the privilege. This final prompt may convince the new member to give 3 names as referrals.

Once the MA has secured the referral names these should be treated as hot new leads. Tell the new member to mention to their friend that they have a free guest pass. The MA should then call the new referral lead to come in without - or preferably with their new member friend - for a tour and to use the facilities. The referral should then be treated the same as any new lead.

I hope the above tips or hints will help you and your sales teams gather new Membership leads via POS referral.

This is what we presented at the Sales & Retention Convention earlier this year – a joined up approach to getting more members into your club and getting them to stick around longer. In these brief blog posts, we’ll try to sum up a couple of hours’ presentation in a few hundred words.


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