Advisors could be doing more to turn highly satisfied customers into active referrals, according to an investor survey released Wednesday.

The results of the 2010 Economics of Loyalty survey found that despite the difficult investment environment of the past two years, most investors were satisfied with their advisors and planned to continue working with them. But many of those investors did not spread the word about those services.

The new data, gathered by Advisor Impact, Charles Schwab Advisor Services and researchers at Texas Tech University, updates research first conducted by the group in 2008. Of the 1,034 financial advisor customers surveyed, 92% gave their advisors a rating of four or five out of five. The survey group also showed a high satisfaction rate overall, with 77% considered satisfied and loyal and 93% planning to continue working with their financial professional.

Those marks dipped, however, when it came to referral rates. Only 29% of respondents had given their advisor a referral in the last 12 months. But because 58% of those referrals were because clients wanted to repay their advisor for great service, advisors could likely drive up those referral rates, the surveyors said

“These ‘engaged’ clients are a great source of referrals for advisors, they just need to know how to close the gap by working with the right clients, having the right conversations and asking the right questions,” Nancy Allen, a director of business consulting services at Schwab Advisor Services said in a statement. “The key is to turn a sense of willingness and motivation into action.”

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