1 easy idea to get your current clients to refer you more often



(Image from the Complete Wedding Course by Zach & Jody)

Let’s get one thing straight… Brides KNOW other brides, and many times they are standing right next to her on the wedding day. You need your current client referring you to ALL of her friends that are potential clients. But how in the world do you get her to do that? The answer is extremely simple.

“Give your clients a reason to talk about you, then give them the tool they need to share you in an effective way.”  – Jody Gray (tweet this out!) 


My wife is one smart cookie. She realized very early on in our business that we only needed to figure out how to get our first few clients when we started our business. After that, we needed the top clients, the best ones, to send us ALL of their friends. If we could get them to do that, we would quickly have a business full of amazing clients that we wanted to work with. Sound easy? It is!  Sort of.


A Reason To Talk

3D colourful people talking

It all starts with giving your client an exceptional experience that they can’t help but talk about! Seth Godin said in his amazing book The Purple Cow, “Are you making really good stuff in your business? If so, how fast can you stop!”

What he meant was that it is not nearly good enough offer really good service or really good products in today’s business. You need to instead offer something great, and great is usually something unique or different. It is unique, in the photography industry,  to offer incredible service, experience and products. MOST people are not doing that (which is unfortunate) but that leaves the playing field wide open for you to do something incredible.

Once a client has a reason to talk about you, they will! So give them a reason! The question is, what is great about your business? What is remarkable (or worth remarking on)? Find out what that is, and you are halfway there.


Giving  Your Clients a Tool to Share


A client who is blown away by the experience you give and starts talking to everyone they know sounds like a good thing, but if they don’t know HOW to share you (and share your value), then their referral is worthless.

Every great business has a system, or a model, that they use in order to give their current clients the language and tools they need to refer them more business that converts into new clients. You have to have a system or model that helps give you the best chance of getting new clients coming your way when old clients talk about you.

Let’s break this down practically!


– Client is told that images will arrive in 90 days maximum after event is shot.

– Photographer delivers images within 1 week.

– Client was under-promised and over-delivered on and is elated and now has a reason to talk about the photographer.

– Because client is so pumped about the photographer turning the images around sooner and of course, loves the images, the client wants to share them.  The photographer makes sure the client can share the images easily and delivers to the client a simple tool for the client to share their images (like a PASS Gallery or custom Showit +Site).  This benefits the client because their images are displayed in a beautiful way and easy to share, and this benefits the photographer in the below ways:

1. Client loves the photographer all the more because photographer has gone above and beyond to give the client a custom website (or gallery)

2. All shared images point back to the photographer

3. When friends of the client visit the +Siteinformation is easily available on the photographer with links back to their site (and because the photographer’s main website is set up in such a way that demonstrates value to potential clients and makes it easy for them to get in touch),  and now the photographer is able to move potential client through the sales process system

That is one example of how you can create an experience worth talking about, and then give your client an easy way to share you that generates results.


1. Think of one new area of your business that you can WOW a client in.

2. Create a simple way for them to SHARE that experience with their friends who are your potential future clients (and make sure that it is extremely easy for them to share).



If you have a reason and tool for sharing or have thought of something after reading this post, then share it in the comments below!

  • Shelbie Cano

    Love the ‘we can hear you typing ‘ picture! Can I use that idea on my blog? Hey I just wanted y’all to know that I am scared… Yes scared to delete your emails ! Yall are always giving such great help and ideas I am afraid to lose them or forget what your post were about. :) that is my way of saying thanks! Y’all are doing a great job!

    • Zach ‘n Jody Gray

      You are too kind Shelbie! We have archived all of the emails we send here on the blog and the new site (we are rebuilding this blog) will allow you to find them here too very easily.

  • Lee

    We create a Showit +site for each client. We also utilize “Stickyalbums” to help our clients share thier images. If you don’t know about sticky albums it’s an app that you drag and drop images into after you have set up your comany info. It gives you a link that you send your client, they open it on their mobile device and download the app. Easy as Pie – I guess, because I’ve never made a pie. :) We do both becase our clients love being able to show their images on their mobile device as an app if their not connected to the internet. And it only takes a couple of minutes extra to set up each app.

    • Zach ‘n Jody Gray

      Love it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Kathleen Pace

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f1f6ef901fa8590cc945c8bc60e6abf4bb81a8dcbf27c0b361b0f0ae02e716f4.jpg I love you guys! I have a Zenfolio site and it’s set up just as your article mentioned. I even provide a link so they can view their gallery in a mobile app. That is put out by Zen called Photo Moments. Since it’s only a link and they need to do the work it’s probably not ideal. I don’t think that this is enough. I feel that I need to do a direct ask and literally ask them if they will refer me. I believe in striking when the iron is hot and asking for referrals even before I shoot their wedding. Many times I’m meeting them for an engagement session anyway. I feel they may be more responsive prewedding. I sent out an email to all of my past clients and all clients that I will be shooting in 2017 with all of this in mind, because when I was their age I remember going to 8 weddings in 1 year! So far no one has responded. Tear. I even offered rewards! $100 credit for previous clients and $100 off pkg for new ones. So far all of my clients have been happy with their images, but I don’t know what else I can do to get them to ” talk about me”.