6 Methods to Increase Customer Referrals

Customer Referrals are an effective and easy way to grow your book of business! In this E-Book, learn more about the methods you can use to increase your customer referrals!

Before using these methods, remember to stay current on the CMS Guidelines for Referrals. Not following these guidelines could result in serious penalties, including license suspension.

Client referrals are allowed under CMS guidelines but must be obtained through specific circumstances. For example, you may ask your clients for referrals to people they know, but the potential client must initiate the new relationship. You can only contact them once they contact you first. Because of this regulation, traditional cold-calling (emailing or calling “through the phone book” or to someone who hasn’t given express permission to be contacted) is prohibited under CMS guidelines.

You may thank clients for referring you with “nominal gifts,” but these gifts cannot be given in exchange for a referral. A few guidelines concerning the interpretation of nominal gifts are:

  • Gifts must not exceed $15 in value, including sales tax. A client may not receive more than $75 worth of gifts per year. Cash and meals cannot be given to a client.
  • Gifts must be given with no stipulations or strings. This includes advertising gifts as incentives for referrals. Gifts can be given as a “Thank You” for a referral but never as a trade.


Direct Referrals:

Your current clients can be very reliable lead sources. Generally, you will have a higher closing ratio with referrals than with other leads. Provide clients with extra business cards and swag to encourage referrals. Create a referral reward program and thank clients who give referrals with a gift card or other item. If they are satisfied with the service they receive, clients will trust that they can refer you to their friends and family.



Attend industry events and networking opportunities to build relationships with potential referral sources. Networking allows you to tap into a source of leads you might not have been able to previously. Developing professional relationships opens doors for more referral opportunities.


Direct Mail:

Stay in contact with your clients through direct mail! Send a handwritten follow-up note after the appointment. Keep your name fresh in their minds with Happy Birthday cards, quarterly check-ins, and reminders of upcoming Enrollment Periods. Include your business cards so they can give them to their friends or family who are interested.



Partner with businesses that serve a similar target audience but don’t compete with your services. Prospects who trust these businesses will be more likely to reach out to you with their recommendation. This could be displaying your business cards at a local dentist or doctor’s office. You can research your local businesses and contact them about partnership opportunities.


Social Media:

In this new age of social media, social platforms have become an excellent source for connecting with people and encouraging referrals. Make your social media a hub of information for prospects and a source of updates and news for current clients. Share client testimonials and success stories to connect with people. Join local Facebook groups and share how you contribute to the community!



Reviews are an easy and free source of marketing. You can use reviews as client testimonials on flyers, social media posts, or on your website to build trust with prospects. Sharing your reviews incentivizes others to share their review in hopes of being featured. You should maintain your Google and Yelp pages by responding to the good and bad reviews you get. This will add a personal touch to your pages, gaining more trust from prospects.


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Learn about more methods an agent can use to grow by contacting a member of our sales team! Whether you’re a new or seasoned agent, the Fidelis Consultants team is here to support all in their journey and growth.


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