The real reason you're not getting referrals

BONUS: Download the exact script I use to ask for referrals.

There is a reason you’re not getting all the referrals you think you should get. The problem is that your clients will never, EVER tell you what that reason is.

You’re probably getting referrals now. Most businesses are. Yet, when we surveyed over 1000 professionals, they overwhelmingly believed they could be doing a lot better.

And for good reason…

The New York Times noted in an article that 65% of all new business in the United States comes from referrals.

That’s a HUGE number. Think of all of the advertising that’s done. All of the money spent on those ads only generates 35% of new business.

So referrals are clearly important.

Nielsen—the research firm—found that referred prospects are 400% more likely to become your client, than prospects from cold advertising.

Yet, when asked, nearly 80% of professionals say they have no system or process for getting referrals.

The 3 Lies Business Owners are Told About Referrals

Unfortunately, the conventional advice we’ve all been given on referrals isn’t very helpful…

First, there’s the ”Do great work and you’ll get referred” advice. It sounds reasonable, but here’s the thing. In our research—we’ve surveyed over 1000 business owners—the second most common complaint sounds like this:

”We do great work. Our clients are happy and they tell us they love us, but it’s really frustrating…they rarely refer.”

difficult-referral.jpeg

The problem with the “do great work and they’ll come” advice is that it relies on the hope that your clients will remember to mention you if it ever comes up in a relevant conversation.

Great when it happens, and it does happen, but it’s hard to build consistent cash flow and growth off of “hope.”

Second is the ”Ask every client, every time you see them” advice. Again, it’s not bad advice, but there’s a problem…

The #1 barrier to getting referrals, cited by business owners, is the fact that asking for them makes both you and the client uncomfortable.

There’s good reason for being uncomfortable using the old referral methods, too…

You’re asking a happy, paying client to give you something…in the form of a connection, a relationship, they have with someone.

You’re “taking” value from the relationship with your client. You’re asking them to swallow some risk (because if you mess up the referral, it’s their relationship that will suffer) and there’s virtually no upside to your client.

It’s hard to refer you because it’s high-risk. You’re essentially asking your client to send someone they care about into a sales meeting with you.

I don’t know about you, but I sell for a living, and I don’t like going to sales meetings where someone else is doing the selling.

There’s built-in sales pressure in every referral because the first interaction you’re asking for is usually a 1-on-1 meeting with the potential client. This pressure prevents happy clients from taking action to refer you.

Third, there’s the ”You can’t control referrals” myth. You can absolutely create a process that consistently delivers great referrals to you. The key word is process. If you leave it to your clients and hope they’ll refer, you have no control.

You can proactively create a simple process to generate a predictable number of referrals every month, without killing yourself to attend every networking event in town. (In fact, you can probably cut back and have some more time with your family.)

The Real Barriers to More Referrals

The first and biggest barrier is one we just mentioned—the sales meeting, and the sales pressure it places on the whole process.

Cartoon of business people in a meeting, one says 'I suppose I'll mention the elephant in the room'.

Sure, you want to get a potential client into a conversation about working with you, but putting a high-commitment step right at the start of the relationship guarantees that your referral flow will be disappointing.

To fix it, you’ve got to replace the sales meeting with a low-commitment, high-value first step. Our approach is to use what we call a Referral Kit™—a tool I describe in depth in my book.

If you'd like a summary, download a copy of our "Referral Blueprint."

The second barrier, is that what we’re asking our clients to do is simply too hard.

If you stop and think about it, we want our clients, or as I like to call them, your unpaid and untrained sales force, to find prospects for you.

Yet, the most difficult task in every business is prospecting for new clients.

Most professionals don’t enjoy doing it and aren’t as effective as they’d like to be, and still we expect our clients to prospect for us.

The old way of doing it, which usually sounds like this: “Do you know anybody who needs (insert your service)?” puts all of the prospecting burdens on your clients. The results are predictably bad.

The third barrier is a big one. Let’s say you’ve asked your client to refer you to three people. They’ve agreed and they’ve even identified the people to refer to you.

Now your client must have three sales-like conversations to convince those potential clients to take the high-commitment step of meeting with you.

If you’re naturally good at sales, this may never have occurred to you. But you can bet that, for your clients, this kind of conversation is a difficult one.

So what’s the answer…?

How to Remove the Barriers to More Referrals

The overall answer to more referrals is to make the whole process easier for your clients (and your referral partners/centers of influence). Let’s look at three ways to do that…

Stop “taking” and start “giving”

Remember, we’re trying to cultivate great relationships with future clients, so it makes sense to be the leader, and deliver value in advance of the sale or engagement.

The challenge is doing that in a way that costs you very little in terms of time, energy, and money.

That means, in most cases, whatever value you deliver can’t be packaged in a 1-on-1 meeting with you. They don’t scale up well, and as we’ve already seen, they add unnecessary pressure.

The key is to package up information that educates a potential client on four things:

  1. The problems, challenges or opportunities they face.
  2. The consequences of those problems, challenges or opportunities.
  3. The first step of the solution to those consequences. (This is important…people don’t spend money to solve problems. We all have problems we’re not willing to pay to solve. They only spend money when the consequences are no longer tolerable.)
  4. How to take a next step with you.

By packaging up your “sales message” in a way that can be shared by your clients and partners easily, without the pressure and risk of a sales meeting, you’ll create much more referral opportunities.

In fact, our clients often see an immediate jump from just a few referrals a month, to 20-50 by using this approach.

Do the prospecting for them

The second big success factor in creating consistent referrals is taking over the prospecting from your clients.

The truth is, it’s your responsibility as the business owner anyway. You know who you want as a client. Why leave it to chance.

We use a method called The Reverse Prospecting Gameplan™ to show clients a specific set of prospects that they’re likely to know. This one little “trick” dramatically improves results.

Use it, and you’ll find that clients who’ve never sent you a referral before are suddenly able to connect you with 5 or 10 or 20 people.

Approach the process with “Purity of Intent”

The final piece of the puzzle and the one that clearly tells your clients that you’re doing all of this unselfishly is what I call purity of intent.

Your clients can sense if you’re doing something because you’ll benefit from it. And, they can tell that you’re doing something because you really want to create value for others and have an impact.

They get it…they know you’ll get business and that’s OK. But they can sense your real motivation.

If you’re on a mission to help the types of clients who really need your help, and you’re sharing really valuable information in your Referral Kit to further that mission, they’ll help you. (This takes all the pressure out of the referral conversation.)

BONUS: Download the exact script I use to ask for referrals.

They want to help you. They want to refer you. It’s just far too hard if you’re doing it the old way.

You only need to ask yourself if you’re happy with the number of referrals you’re getting, for proof that the old way doesn’t work.

I’ve written an entire book on our new approach to referrals called Unstoppable Referrals: 10x Referrals, Half the Effort.

If you’d like a summary, I’ve put together a short “blueprint” presentation of our referral process.

The Best Professional Services Firm Marketing Tools of the Year

We’re wrapping up our best year ever and I’ve looked back and realized we’ve published four free tools you may have missed. Each of these is designed to help you get more clients. Now, just in case you missed them, they’re all right here for you…

#1. The Lead Generation Calculator

lead-gen-calculator-thumb

Ever wondered how many leads you need to generate to hit your revenue goals? Answer a couple of simple questions and this little calculator will tell you.

#2. The Email Newsletter Formula (template)

email-newsletter-template-thumb

Our clients have told us over the years, that one of the most difficult and confusing things for them is figuring out what to say in their email newsletter each week or each month. I’ve written several thousand marketing emails at this point. In the process, I’ve found there’s a formula to writing emails that get a response from prospects. As we do in all of our consulting programs, we take complex, confusing things and turn them into clear, easy to use tools. This one will help you keep your 2017 newsletter resolution

#3. The Referral Partner Script

In my book I share a really easy way to turn your network into partners, then into “promoters.” You do it with what I call, “The Johnny Carson Method” (see Chapter 9). If you’re unsure how to get a referral partner to say “yes” to The Johnny Carson Method, use this script.

#4. The Referral Mindset Scorecard

I’m most proud of this tool. We’ve looked at the thinking and attitudes of our most successful clients and contrasted that to entrepreneurs who tend to struggle getting leads and referrals.

We’ve identified eight “mindsets” or ways categories of thinking. And for each, we’ve documented how top performers think.

Referral-Mindset-Scorecard-thumb

Now, here’s the really good news… We noticed that when a new client comes on board with us, they often score in the 4, 5 or 6 range in most of the 8 dimensions. After a few months, their thinking expands, and they grow to the 10, 11 or 12 range (the range of top performers).

It’s amazing to watch.

This is the perfect time to download this scorecard, at the beginning of the new year. Honestly, note where you think you are right now. Then in the “Score Next” column, right the score you’d like to have in 12 months.

Just like that, you’ve set your growth path for 2017.

Get these tools now, and supercharge your start in 2017!

How to Get Referral Partners to Send You More Clients

It's 10am on a Tuesday morning. You're sitting in Starbucks, a Grande Pike steaming in front of you. You've pulled out your notebook and your latest brochure and you sit there...eyes glued to the door, waiting... Yet another "networking coffee" with someone you hope will become a true referral partner.

What we hope for in our partner relationships and what the other partner hopes you'll do for them is often a long way from reality...

What happens in most referral partner relationships?

In most referral partner relationships, you start with grand pronouncements of your mutual desire to help each other by sending new business "whenever you come across someone" who needs what the partner offers.

It all sounds so promising.

You end the coffee meeting and both walk away smiling, but a little empty. You've done this before and it's rarely paid off.

But this time will be different! You're convinced of it.

Then, weeks pass with nothing from your new "partner." No email, or call, no letter or fax or smoke signal.

Another promising coffee, yields nothing for you, or your partner.

Why don't they refer you, if they say they will?

So, why don't well meaning, honest, and successful people refer you, when they say they will?

There are 1000 reasons, including these...

  • They're busy like you, running a business of their own, with a family of their own, with too long a todo list and too few hours in the day...
  • They don't know how to refer you or who would be a good prospect (yes, I know you talked about it, but that was one quick conversation weeks ago)...
  • They forgot...
  • They lost your card...
  • It's too hard to refer you...

But it's almost never because they don't want to help.

Referring you is too hard, so you're not getting referrals

To overcome all of those 1000 reasons they don't refer, you've got to do two things:

  1. You've got to do something to help them remember you on an entirely different level than every other person they had coffee with this month, who wants those same referrals.
  2. You've got to make it much easier to refer you.

"But I'm not hard to refer..."

Are you sure?

Put yourself in the shoes of your referral partner. You're most likely asking them to refer you to their business contacts--clients and other partners.

Their clients are worth money. Usually a lot of money. You're asking them to send their clients to you so you can sell them something.

I know you're really good at what you do, but to your referral partner, all they're seeing is RISK.

"If I refer my client BigCo to Bob, and Bob doesn't perform, or if he just doesn't mesh with the management team at BigCo, they're going to remember I introduced them. And they're worth $50,000 a year to us. I don't think I'm going to do that..."

But even getting to that point assumes your partner knows a lot about you...including how to identify a good prospect for you.

Stop and think what you're asking of your partner...

You're hoping he or she will be able to understand enough about your business, the problem you solve for people, and the market you serve, to spot a prospect when they see them.

How long did it take you to figure all of that out for yourself?

It takes most businesses several years to get it all dialed in. Your partner got a 30-minute briefing over coffee. Which is why you need to train your partners...

How to "properly" train a referral partner

The "old approach" to referrals says, give a referral to get a referral.

The problem with that approach is that you're in the same boat as your partner. You probably don't understand enough about his or her business to spot a prospect either. And if you did identify one of your clients as a prospect for your partner, you've got to swallow the same risk...

So, yes "give first", but give differently...and train your partner to do the same.

The simple approach I teach my clients and I wrote about in my book is something I call the "Johnny Carson Method".

See Carson was a master at "referring" talented people to millions of TV viewers on The Tonight Show. It never felt "salesy", even though the aim was almost always to sell--a new movie, a comedian's act, a band's new album--it was always authentic.

Johnny's secret?

The interview. He allowed his audience to eavesdrop on his conversations with the people he was "referring".

If you have a list of clients and prospects (your audience), you can do the same.

Bring to them, all of the wisdom and expertise and personality of the partners you're networking with.

Every time you use the Johnny Carson Method to refer a partner, you're training them in how they can promote you.

But my referral partners won't get it

I understand why you'd think that, but try it, then tell me. Few professionals are ever interviewed during the course of their careers.

They'll feel flattered and their ego will compel them to want to be interviewed when you propose it.

Not to mention their own self-interest for growing their business. See, you're making this all about THEM. What a great place to start your relationship.

Once you've trained them what should you do next?

The next step is simple...

Turn the tables. Say, "Hey Sue, that went so well and I've had such great feedback from my clients and prospects about what you shared in your interview, that I'd like to return the favor and lend what I know to your clients and prospects. Why don't you interview me, and we'll have something valuable for your people too..."

And like that, you've given your partner a way to refer you to most everyone in their Rolodex, without any risk.

Gee, this seems like a lot of work

It is, and it isn't. You have a choice, you're working to get clients now. You can keep working to get them onesie-twosie or you can choose to work smarter.

To work with leverage.

How this leads to a lot more referrals than you're used to

Instead of "hoping" for one or two referrals from a partner, you've opened an opportunity to get 10 or 20 or 100 (yes really) referrals from a single referral partner.

I'll wager that's more than you get in a year from all of your current partners put together.

I know it sounds like a lot of referrals, and it is. It may even sound impossible. I can assure you it's not.

I know, because our clients see those kinds of numbers regularly. And, here, we eat our own dog food...and using the same process, we see between 100 and 250 referrals from a single partner.

But forget those big numbers for a second...

Imagine if you just got 10 referrals each, from two partners each month. That's not a lot. Would it make a difference in your firm?

If you answer "yes," you might want to check out our latest business owner briefing - How to Get Clients Without "Prospecting", Cold Calling or Spending a Dime on Advertising...

This briefing is for business owners who close most of the prospects they see, but just aren't seeing enough people to get all the clients they need.

Click here for the next available presentation time.

Shocking Admission: Referrals Won’t Work for Everyone

I get asked this question all the time…

“Hey Steve, will your process work in [insert your industry or profession]?”

The truth is, yes of course it works for everyone…

Just kidding ;-)

Our process really isn’t the right fit for everyone. In today’s quick (5-min) audio, I explain who the Unstoppable Referrals™ process works for and who should avoid it.

Listen now…it may just save you a lot of time.

 

The magic elixir that cures all your business ills

It’s not JUST the path to premium pricing…

It also cures the 2am sweats (as you lay awake wondering where the next client is coming from)…

Prevents frustration-induced hair loss (caused when you pull your hair out in frustration when you look at your financial statements)…

Innoculates you against creditors…just a few drops, applied consistently and they magically dissappear…

And, most importantly, it steels your confidence to marshall on in your mission…

This magic cure of cures…?

Why, lead generation of course.

Which is why you’ve heard so much about it from so many.

But not all lead generation is created equally…

Some is unpredictable and laborious.

Some is vulnerable to platform inflation (ask the guys who built businesses on penny clicks on Adwords a decade ago)…

Some is subject to account termination…

Only one form of the cure is inherently diverse, continually re-nourishing, exponentially expansive…

Only referrals, offer such safety and security.

Using the Unstoppable Referrals™ Method, you turn one client into 10 new leads…

Those 10, turn into 50…

50 becomes 250, 250 multiplies to 1250…

…and, if you lose a referral source here or there, you never lose them all.

The source is inherently diverse and stable.

It relies on a fundamental of human nature, which is unlikely to ever change…

Our natural NETWORK of human connections…

Why dabble in 10 or 20 or 50 ways to get a client online, when you can master ONE, and be set for life.

http://unstoppableceo.net/infiltration

photo, originally in color, courtesy of: Karen Roe

A shocking response to yesterday’s email

  Yesterday, I shared the story of two entrepreneurs…

One was cold calling for clients…2000 calls a month landed 6 prospects (not 6 clients…6 prospects)…

The other was, IS, literally knocking on doors hoping to stumble upon A) someone who’s actually home, and B) someone who wants or needs his service (in this case, investment advice).

There is, of course, the obvious problem with these approaches—they don’t work very well.

Since I trust you’re not doing anything like this in your business, let’s look at a deeper problem and how it *might* apply to you…

The bigger problem is that with both approaches, they won’t support the goals of the entrepreneurs using them.

One of these men is looking to grow the business by 400% in the next year.

To do that, he’ll have to make 8000 calls a month.

He’s got a system, but it’s not a scaleable system. It will never take him to his goal.

Will your system scale to meet YOUR GOALS…?

Now, for the shocking response I got to yesterday’s email…

Long-time client and Unstoppable CEO™ Elite member, John Bellino, wrote in to share his recent lead generation numbers…

February: 21 introductions via 2 clients.

March: 75 introductions via 5 clients.

April: 36 introductions via 2 clients.

That’s 132 *referred* (not cold) prospects from just 9 client meetings where he applied the “Network Infiltration” strategy, in three months.

We know with predictable accuracy how many clients will come from those 132 referrals.

If John decides he wants to double the business next quarter, he simply uses the strategy in 3 more client meetings each month (not 2000 more cold calls).

It’s a scaleable system…

http://unstoppableceo.net/infiltration

 

 

 

photo, originally in color, courtesy of: Markus Spiske

You…a star in my next book? (Who needs American Idol??)

Fame, fortune and authority could come to you… ;-)

Well, the truth is, probably none of that, but you will have my eternal gratitude AND be introduced to more than 10,000 book readers IF, you can answer “YES” to the questions below…

I’m starting work on “Unstoppable Referrals 2.0” a new, updated version of my bestselling book and I’d like to feature YOU!

So I ask…

1. Have you applied any of the concepts in the first Unstoppable Referrals book and seen some success?

2. Are you in a professional services business?

Examples include: financial advisors, accountants, attorneys, doctors, dentists, orthodontists, architects, engineers, consultants, coaches, real estate professionals, insurance professionals…

Essentially any service business where you had to go to school, take a test, or get a license. And one in which you get paid for your advice and counsel.

3. Are you willing to get on the phone or Skype and allow me to interview you about your business and how you’ve applied the Unstoppable Referrals approach?

If you answered “YES” to all three, then please send an email right now (really) to support@unstoppableceo.net with the subject “Make me a star”.

Oh…one more thing. I was reminded of this video by my friend, Jason Leister:

http://www.abraham.com/strategy-of-preeminence/

It’s worth watching this weekend.

 

 

 

photo, originally in color, courtesy of: Josh Hallett

The “client” experience…

  Two phone calls. Starkly different… The first, with a prospect for our Elite program… she’d had some success by sheer force of will—pounding the pavement—she’d hit six-figures, but barely…and stalled. Stuck there for two years with no growth. Small, but decent client base… And lucky to get a referral every few weeks or once a month, and no other means of getting clients to flow… She just didn’t have time for anything else, already maxed out on networking groups… My very next call that day was a client of three years… He started in a similar place. Successful, but stalled. But he’s not stalled now (he hasn’t been stalled for a long while). In fact, his real problem is too many prospects…so what makes the difference? Two things… A process to follow and… MASTERY OF THE PROCESS. My client followed a process for getting referrals. It was challenging at first. He pushed through and, quickly got results. Then he went deeper…to mastery. And on our call the, now, master reported with a smile and a chuckle… “You’ll like these results…two client meetings, 55 referrals.” The master does in a day, what the frustrated and stuck struggle to do in a year. The good news…the master—the client—was once frustrated and stuck too… Hope lives.

 

 

 

photo courtesy of: L'oeil étranger

Turning one referral partner into five

  I was on the phone this week with a client who was fretting about his referral partners…

Well, they really weren’t partners yet…

He wanted to work with five people, all five were in the same business and their business was highly competitive.

Working with any one, risked alienating the other four.

This client was stuck, because he was focused on what he wanted…to get referrals from all five.

So we turned it around…

And we created a situation where he could give them, without much effort, what they all wanted (and desperately so)…

Instead of my client walking on eggshells as he tried to quietly work with all five, they became the pursuers…

Seeking him out…

Instead of begging for access to their relationships, they willingly opened the Rolodex…

 

 

 

photo courtesy of: Guian Bolisay

New marketing advice from Google, have you seen it?

  Did you see the new marketing advice from Google that was revealed last week?

No?

Here it is, and I quote…

“Don’t put all your eggs in somebody else’s basket.”

What? You didn’t get the announcement?

It was quietly uttered from the Googleplex, when news of Google’s elimination of right-side ads spread.

Didn’t you see panic? Online advertisers running…screaming…through the streets?

Oh, the humanity!

Business will be hurt…some fatally so.

What the removal of those pesky right-side ads means, is that the inventory of ad space just went from 8 or 12 or 16 per page to 4, maybe 8.

Supply just got cut by 50% or more.

Think back to high-school economics. What’s about to happen to the price of a click on one of the remaining ads?

Exactly.

And businesses that have foolishly relied on getting clicks for ‘X’ and built their own economics around that assumption are about to feel some pain.

So, I’m often asked, “Why am I so dogmatic about using referrals as the foundation for business growth?”

‘Cause Google can’t double the price of your referrals overnight.

‘Cause it’s an inherently diversified source of new clients…if you’ve got 50 clients referring and one or two or five stop, you probably won’t notice, and they’re easily replaced for the same cost per new lead.

‘Cause it makes you and your business resilient…

Need to “up level” your referral game? Watch this web class…

 

 

 

photo courtesy of: Nate Steiner

How this one simple "hack" creates referrals, without you ever having to ask for them

You've finally found it... If you've ever wondered why, even though you do fantastic work and have happy clients, you aren’t getting more referrals...

Or...

If asking for a referral makes you feel uncomfortable…makes you wonder how you should ask, if you should ask, and when you should ask...

Then your answer is finally here...

But before we get to the answer, let's first look at the "referral problem."

If you've ever had a client "disappear" after asking them for a referral, this is why...

So, you've asked your client for a referral. Maybe they agreed. And then, you hear nothing for a week.

So you follow up.

First by email...no response.

Then by phone...still nothing.

They've gone into the witness protection program and you can't reach them.

Here's why that happens...

The traditional model we’ve all tried to use for getting referrals is fundamentally flawed. It puts your clients and referral partners in a difficult position.

When you ask them for a referral, they've got to be willing to send one of their valuable relationships into...

...a sales meeting with YOU!

And no one wants to go to a sales meeting. Sales meetings are scary and sales people are scary...you might get them to buy something they don’t want to buy.

Now, you and I both know, you're not really scary. And we both know you have the very best intentions for helping every referred prospect, but every time you ask a client for a referral, they see risk.

Risk that you’ll pressure or offend their contact...

Risk that you’ll fail to follow-through...

Risk that you’ll damage their very valuable relationship...

At the same time, your client realizes that, other than some social capital (and maybe a nice gift basket) there is no upside for them if the referral is successful (meaning you make a sale).

And they know there's a truckload of downside. You have the potential to destroy a relationship they value.

The traditional referral model has built-in, unavoidable, yet seldom voiced sales pressure.

Everyone knows it's there, yet no one talks about it. And, the implied sales pressure built into the traditional referral model prevents you from getting referrals.

It's simply too hard to refer you...

It's too hard to overcome that implied sales pressure. In fact, the #1 barrier to getting more referrals, as told to us by over 1000 business owners, is "asking for referrals."

The business owners who told us what was holding them back, were courageous for identifying and admitting the block. They also told us that the reason they don’t like asking for referrals is that it makes them feel "salesy" and they're not comfortable with that feeling...

Maybe you can relate...

The truth is, it's simply too hard to refer you, in the old model.

(By the way...I'm teaching a free 9-part email course on how to get better, more profitable clients, easily, without ever having to hard-sell anyone. If this stuff interests you, join me by clicking here.)

There are referrals laying hidden in your network just waiting for you to unlock them, here's how...

If referring you the "old way" is hard for your prospects (and it is if you're not getting all the referrals you think you should) then the simple solution is to make it easier.

But how?

A few years ago we stumbled across the answer.

Instead of making a sales meeting the first step in the referrals process (which is exactly how your prospects and clients view that first meeting with you), replace it with something less intimidating.

What we've found to work is to use what I call in my book, Unstoppable Referrals: 10x Referrals, Half the Effort, a Referral Kit™.

A Referral Kit is simply packaged up information...

The kind of information you're probably sharing with prospects right now in your sales process.

You might package it up as…

  • A short special report
  • A white paper
  • An audio interview
  • A short book (somtimes really short...like 25–30 pages)
  • A webinar
  • A live seminar
  • And there are even more simple to create formats…

Here’s what happens when you leverage your Referral Kit for easy referrals...

First, it flips the dynamic of the referral process from you taking something from your relationship with your clients to breathing value into the relationship. Here’s how...

Your Referral Kit, if you do it right, is filled with valuable information that helps people who are facing problems like the ones you’ve already solved for your client...

It helps them understand the problem they face...

It helps them understand the consequences of not solving the problem...

It gives them a look at the first step or two of the solution...

And, it shows them proof (if you can use this kind of proof in your industry) in the form of testimonials and case studies, so referred prospects can see people like them, who’ve succeeded after buying from you...

Instead of your clients having to go have a difficult conversation with one of their contacts…trying to convince that contact to take a meeting with you...

They get to "give the gift of you" to their network.

Think about that shift for a moment. It's significant.

Instead of asking for something that's hard for your clients to do--refer you--that carries risk for them...

Instead of all of that, you give them something that's inherently valuable, easy to pass along, positions you as an expert and authority, and shows the prospect how to take a next step with you (i.e. schedule a sales meeting) only after you've built credibility and trust.

You’ll never have to ask for a referral again!

Now, you get to have what we call "The Value Conversation" with your client, where you help them share something valuable (your Referral Kit) to the connections that are important to them.

Everyone's interests are now aligned...

  • Your interest (getting clients) aligns with...
  • Your client's interest (being valuable to his or her network) aligns with...
  • Your prospect's interest (solving a thorny problem by working with an expert they can trust)...

It's the most natural way to 'orchestrate' lots of referrals...and it doesn't take a long time.

If you stop and think about it, it's a simple and very natural way to open a new relationship with another human (your prospect)...

Give them something of value first to show you're trustworthy and knowledgable. Then, once you've established your value and trust in a small way, move them towards the sale.

There's obviously more to this than can be shared in this short article...if you'd like to learn more, join me for free course Get the Clients You Deserve where I can show you in detail how this can make getting clients dramatically easier.

An elegant solution, when you hate to “prospect”

  “Prospecting” must be the most difficult function in business…

It causes confusion—you don’t know where to look for prospects…

It causes fear—you don’t know what to say to prospects…

It causes heartburn—you worry when you don’t have prospects and you can’t easily fix it (see above for 2 reasons why)…

It, alone is one of the major causes of stress in business.

In many businesses the answer is to make everyone (globally or everyone in a given market) your “prospect.” But that ignores reality.

The available wisdom breaks two ways…

The aggressive: Go beat the bushes, cold call, get out there, be seen…everywhere.

or…

The passive: “Just post it and they will come.”

Thankfully, there’s a middle road. A friendlier road. A way to develop a relationship with a prospect from strength, not desperate weakness. To be proactive, yet not pushy.

It requires no budget and only small, comfortable effort. I call it “network infiltration.”

I’ve outlined the process in “The Network Infiltration Blueprint”...

 

 

 

photo courtesy of: James