How to Get Others Referring to You

Vision Alliance | How To Get Others Referring To YOu

How would you like to get twice as many new customers for 1/3 the cost of anything you’ve ever done before – or even for FREE? If that sounds like pie in the sky, please find a quiet spot and read this article very carefully. You are about to learn one of the most effective ways to get new customers, extra sales and leads for your business. In today’s economic climate, in fact in any economic climate, people are very cautious about dealing with strangers. This means, that no matter how good your product or service, you have to overcome 2 major hurdles.

1. You have to convince the purchaser that your product or service is what they really need and want.
2. You have to assure them that your company will deliver as you promise. In other words,that they can trust you

To some extent you may overcome these hurdles with a money-back guarantee or some sort of a free trial. However, you’ll do far, far better if you
STOP TRYING TO DO BUSINESS WITH STRANGERS. Let’s face it. It’s hard. It’s expensive, and it can be draining on you and your staffs’ energies. After all, to win the trust of a person who doesn’t know you takes time and effort. And at the end of it all, you still can’t be sure if you’ll get their business or not.

However, having the trust of a person is crucial if they are going to buy from you. That’s why the easiest sales are to people who have already bought from you, or referral business.

When you get introduced to a prospective client from someone who is known by the prospect the other person is more likely to listen to you and give you a chance to sell yourself and what you have to offer. You may wonder, “Why would another business want to introduce me and what I’m selling?” There are a number of reasons why someone may want to recommend you.

  1. They may recommend you if you have given them value far and beyond what they expected and they like you and your product.
  2. Maybe they’ll do it because they want you to introduce them to your customers.
  3. Maybe they’ll do it because if their customers buy your product, they’ll then need more of their product as a result. This is especially true if you show your customers how to grow their business and get more customers. As they grow, you get more business from them.
  4. They may do it because you pay them to introduce you or you offer them a ‘bribe’.
  5. Or they may do it because they know their customers will want your product or service and that they’ll get goodwill and thanks from their customers for letting them know about it.

Let me share a very important fact with you
 Every single person you want to reach, is already someone else’s customer. Which means they are buying products and services similar to what you offer. Providing that the business they are buying from is doing a good job, these customers will trust a recommendation from that business.

Getting someone else to refer to you is not as easy to put into practice as it sounds.You see,the business owners who may want to introduce you are very busy people. Introducing your business is never going to be as important for them, as it is for you. So what you have to do is to make it so easy for them that they can’t possibly refuse you. How do you do that? To make the introduction easy for them and effective for you, you are going to have to provide the email or letter and the promotional collateral (brochure etc) for them to send. All they have to do is put copy and paste the letter into their email, attach your information and press send.

There are also programs out there such as affiliate and referral partner programs that can also track your referral partner activity. This is not necessary however a great idea especially if your volume of referrals start to increase rapidly and if you are selling products regularly that way referral fees can be easily and effortlessly calculated.

next time you want someone to start referring to you, try thinking about how you can make it easy for them. Write the intro letter for them, collate your introduction information / presentation pack that’s brief and displays the benefits of why someone would want to do business with you and then of course be sure you have a great offer for the new prospective customer to “try you out”.

Would you like some help with this in your business?  Why not book a Complimentary Business Growth Session with one of our Coaches?  Connect with us here.

Promote Your Business for Free

How would you like to get twice as many new customers for one-third of the cost of anything you’ve ever done before – or even for FREE? If that sounds out of reach to you, please find a quiet spot and read this article very carefully. You are about to learn an affordable and effective way to get new customers, extra sales and leads for your business.

In today’s economic climate, in fact in any economic climate, people are very cautious about dealing with strangers. This means, that no matter how good your product or service is, you have to overcome two major hurdles.

1. You have to convince the purchaser that your product or service is what they really want and need. (Remember, people buy more of what they want, rather than more of what they need).

2. You have to assure them that your company will deliver as you promise. In other words, that they can trust you. To some extent you may overcome these hurdles with a money-back guarantee or some sort of a free trial.

However, you’ll do far, far better if you:

Stop trying to do business with strangers

Let’s face it. It’s hard. It’s expensive, and it can be draining on you and your staffs’ energies. After all, to win the trust of a person who doesn’t know you takes time and effort. And at the end of it all, you still can’t be sure if you’ll get their business or not. However, having the trust of a person is crucial if they are going to buy from you. That’s why the easiest sales are to people who have already bought from you, or from referral business. So how do you get someone’s trust in a way that won’t break the bank? Quite simply like this…

Instead of approaching prospective customers who don’t know you, get someone else to introduce you first. Of course, being introduced to someone is no guarantee of a lifelong relationship. However, what it does do, is give you the chance to state your proposition. In other words, the other person is more likely to listen to you and give you a chance to sell yourself and what you have to offer.

Now you may be wondering, ‘Why would another business want to introduce me and what I’m selling?’ There are a number of reasons why someone may want to recommend you. Here’s a few of them:

1. They may recommend you if you have given them value far above and beyond what they expected, and they like you and your product.

2. Maybe they’ll do it because they want you to introduce them to your customers.

3. Maybe they’ll do it because if their customers buy your products or services, they’ll then need more of their product or service as a result. This is especially true if you show your customers how to grow their business and get more customers. As they grow, you get more business from them.

4. They may do it because you pay them to introduce you or you offer them an incentive.

5. Or they may do it because they know their customers will want your product or service and that they’ll get goodwill and thanks from their customers for letting them know about it.

Before I show you how to apply this knowledge in your business let me share a very important fact with you: Every single person you want to reach, is already someone else’s customer. Which means they are already currently buying products and services similar to what you offer. Providing that the business they are buying from is doing a good job, these customers will trust a recommendation from that business.

Here is an example of how it could work.

Let’s pretend for a moment that you have just released a really hot new marketing manual. This manual is full of information and materials to help you increase your business.

Now, let’s suppose the people who have invested in your manual are really switched on business owners and professionals, who have as their customers and friends, other business owners. And these switched on people understand that if they make this money making information available to their customers, then their customers will learn how to get more business, and they in turn will also benefit. Imagine this, you are an accountant, a printer, or any supplier to other businesses and your customers double their business. What happens to your business?

Smarter Networking

Ten years ago or more there was a well known phrase that was used among business owners and individuals which was: It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.

Today, owning and operating a franchise of any kind requires you to go beyond this, if you are to continue to create and maintain the “top of mind” awareness among peers, associates and the larger local marketplace. Networking today now goes beyond who you know
.. 

It’s all about who knows you!

For much of my business life I have known the importance of networking. Although I knew the importance of it, I avoided networking as much as I could in the early days, and back then always described myself as a poor networker. The thought of going to a networking event created more nerves in me than meeting my mother in law, and literally scared me to death. I have always been a very confident person, passionate about what I do and believe 100% in what I and my company stands for, however unsure of how to start conversations, trying to overcome the fear of rejection and not knowing exactly what I was supposed to do once I met someone and got their business card, kick started a journey of learning the secrets to successful networking.

I have been described as a great networker by many of my associates and now with more tools in my toolbox, networking is something I look forward to rather than something I shy away from. The most important thing I focus on is making networking as efficient and effective as possible, ensuring I get maximum results in a short amount of time.

Let me share with you some great tips that have helped me along the way.

Networking is about building relationships.

Networking currently accounts for 87% of business in the marketplace. Yet many people neglect networking and fail to see it as a vital business and career building skill. Networking should be part of your daily, weekly or monthly activities just like any other business development activity you currently undertake.

Anyone can network with the exception of those who just don’t like people at all.

Referral marketing is the best way to build your business.

 

Networking Well

Your approach to networking is just as important as what you actually do. Starting with the right attitude and with minimum expectations will help you start off on the right foot. Like anything the more practice you do, the better you will eventually get.

For networking to work I have learnt that it’s important to do these three things.

  1. Prepare
  2. Connect
  3. Strengthen

If you’re not getting the results you want from networking, first check that you’re really doing all three of these steps properly, then work on ways to maximize your results within each one of them.

Prepare

Before you even shake one hand, it’s important you prepare yourself, both mentally and verbally.

This one is about your attitude about networking, your mindset.  Always be upbeat, positive, enthusiastic and realistic.

Making Connections- Introducing Yourself

Once you’re prepared, you’re ready to start making connections with people and there are multiple ways to do that. It all starts with introducing yourself.

You will have a limited time to get your message across so it’s important to create an introduction that will grab peoples’ attention enough for them to remember you. Not only do you require the skill to accurately describe who you are and what you’re looking for, it’s important to say it in such a way that other people can understand it enough to be able to tell others.

How to Introduce Yourself

Remember, you’re not going to make the sale and close the deal with your introduction. All you can really do is capture enough attention and interest to keep the conversation going. So stick to the basics and keep it short. You can go into much more detail after you’ve gotten someone’s attention, when they ask you for more information. But to get there, you need to get across three things first:

  • Your name (and company name if appropriate)
  • Your specialty and its benefit (how it helps the person hiring you)
  • And your target (who ideally you would like to speak with)

Unless you are a natural networker, networking can seem like alot of work.

Consistent efforts will eventually produce results.

Strengthen

Networking doesn’t stop there. Once you’ve made those initial connections, the next thing you have to work on is strengthening them. The best opportunities come from people who know you, trust you and like you. It’s difficult to get to that point after a 5-minute conversation at an event. You need to follow up and meet with contacts offline, then you have to stay top of mind.

Be sure you collect as many business cards as possible

 as the networking event is just the beginning!

Following Up

Events are good for the initial connection, but you have to build on that. You don’t have to follow up with everyone you meet, but there are three easy categories to focus on:

  1. Follow up with anyone who could be a client. That’s a no brainer.
  2. Follow up with people who are in your target space, maybe they’re in your field, but don’t do what you do. Or they target the same target audience. Perhaps you can help each other out
  3. Third, you may want to follow up with anyone who just plain impresses you. It’s good to know those kinds of people and have them in your network.

Get a business card. The best way to do this is to combine it with a conversation ender like mentioned earlier. Say “By the way, before I go, can I have your card?” Then email them the next day. Say you enjoyed meeting them and wondered if they’d like to get together for a coffee to learn more about each other and explore ways to help each other out. Position meetings this way you will find no one ever says no, because the meeting is about the two of you and not just about you. That’s important to remember when you’re asking for meetings.

Remember, you need to follow up with people if you want to build a relationship with them. Speaking to them for 5 or 10 minutes at an event is not enough time to form a lasting bond. Until you follow up and meet one-on-one, you’ll just be a business card to them and not a real person.

Key elements of a Good Networker

A Good Networker:

  • Has two ears and one mouth.
  • Asks questions and gets to know the other person.
  • Gives without expectation
  • Has an aim to add value
  • Has an abundant mindset- there is plenty of business out there for everyone.
  • Can form meaningful relationships and communicate their ideas.
  • Carries business cards at all times

Tips for Successful Networking

  • Limit your memberships to two or three groups. Don’t spread yourself too thin. Maximize your experience by going for depth of involvement.
  • Attend meetings and events regularly. Build a base of support with regular members and position yourself with new members as someone in the know.
  • Build great bridges! Every day people are missing chances to do business, largely because they don’t take the time to build a relationship with or even get to know the person.
  • Listening and asking more questions.
  • Arrive at meetings and networking events at least 15 minutes before the actual starting time
  • Introduce yourself with your name and the company you are from
  • Ask about the person first and listen intently. Most people want to talk about themselves.
  • Make sure you get as many business cards from all those you meet
  • Speak with one person at a time or at least a small group of no more than three
  • End conversations gracefully
  • Make sure you follow up with the contact soon after the event
  • Do something with the cards you collected
..put them into your database
  • Always thank people for sending referrals
  • Manage your time well

Making Continuous Improvements

When I first started networking to build my business, my efforts were slightly unfocused. I spread my memberships across a numerous organizations, rarely attending more than one or two meetings, if that. I’d attend random networking events because friends had invited me. In hindsight, all of those activities were necessary to help me build my skills and understand how to network smarter today.

With networking, I’ve found that it’s not the one big event that changes the course of a business. It’s the small steps that are taken consistently.

Think of all the steps you’ve taken, along many different paths to connect with all the different people now in your network. Some of those paths led to business, to friendships, and some have yet to reach a destination. Take one of these 5 steps listed below, down one of those unfinished paths, and see where it may lead

1) Make that follow up call.

2) Forward an article.

3) Warm up an old connection.

4) Spend more time with one of your networking groups.

5) Find someone in your network to collaborate with.

Strive for continuous improvement in your networking.  One small step for you could mean a giant leap for your business or career.

 

8 HOT Tips for Attending Networking Functions

8 Hot tips for attending networking functions By Robyn Henderson

Everyday there are an unlimited number of networking breakfasts, lunches, dinners, seminars, workshops to attend. Your budget probably determines how many of these you can afford to attend. More often than not your positive mindset determines the outcomes in attending these functions.

Many people arrive at these events stressed, angry, basically not wanting to be there. What they don’t realise is they do themselves a disservice being there because all they will attract is negative people like themselves. They are almost guaranteed to have a miserable time.

So how can you maximise your attendance at these events?  here’s 8 Hot Tips to help you maximise your effectiveness at your next networking event.

1.    Decide why you are attending this event. What do you want to get out of it? Is there a specific person you want to meet? Are you looking for a certain service provider?

The clearer you are on why you are going, the more chance you have of achieving it.

2.    Remember to take your business cards. A business card that clearly states your name, what you do and your contact details is imperative for effective networking.

3.    Don’t sell your product or services at the event. Rather if the person expresses interest, suggest that you phone them to discuss further. You cannot control the situation and you may find “dinner is served” is announced mid pitch and you have lost a great opportunity to make a sale. No one wants to be sold to.

4.    Have quality conversations rather than quantity. If there are 50 people at the event, don’t expect to speak to all fifty. Be content with a quality conversation with 5-7 people who the next day will look at your card and remember you and what you spoke about, and more importantly remember you the next time they see you.

5.    The best networkers are the best listeners. Anyone will speak to you for ten minutes if you are not speaking about yourself.

6.    Listen to the latest news or talk back radio on your way to the event, so that you have a couple of interesting current topics to talk about. Be prepared.

7.    Avoid talking about work. 80% of the population don’t get recognition on the job and don’t want to speak about their job at all.

8.    Always make eye contact when you are speaking to someone – unless it is culturally unacceptable.

HAPPY NETWORKING until next time