It’s all about growing your business.
If you’re growing a business, you definitely want more introductions to people that would potentially be a good client or possible referral source for you.
Here’s a 2-step strategy that works to get you those introductions. It works for me and it works for my clients that I teach it to. And, it will work for YOU TOO!
Step 1. Think of someone you know really well. Someone you like and trust―and someone who likes and trusts you. It might be a networking connection, a client or someone else that has recently referred some work your way. It doesn’t matter who they are or what they do. Just use, as a litmus test, someone you know, like and trust―and someone who knows, likes and trusts you, as you think of the person’s name.
What if you gave that person (let’s call him Jonathan) a call or sent him an email like this:
You know what? I think that there are some people that I know that would potentially be good clients for you―and would see the value in the kind of work that you do. And I think Jonathan, that you probably know some people that would be good clients for me.
Jonathan, would you be open to a conversation about the two of us helping each other grow our businesses through mutual referrals?
It’s a no-brainer that Jonathan is going to respond with, “Yeah. Let’s talk.”
Now how many ‘Jonathans’ do you know that you could approach with the same proposition? Two. Five. Maybe more. Think of all the potential referrals those people could be creating for you―and you for them, of course.
Step 2. Sit down with Jonathan and open up your LinkedIn connections to him. (By the way, it doesn’t have to be LinkedIn. It could also be some other data base of connections/clients/customers.) Now say to Jonathan, “let’s look at these people I know” and starting from the top say, “does this person look like someone that would potentially be a good client or possible referral source for you?” If Jonathan says “yes, I think so” write down that name and continue working through your LinkedIn connections/data base. Your goal is to make a list of prime prospects for Jonathan.
Now you’re going to send a message all of the people on your list, one at a time, introducing Jonathan to each of them.
Here’s what you would say:
I hope your 2016 is off to a great start.
I was chatting with my good friend Jonathan Smith earlier today about the people I know really well and I thought the two of you should know about each other. Both of you do a brilliant job for your clients—and are good blokes.
Whether or not you guys have a reason to do business together or refer business to each other―or can in some way help each other with your respective networks, I’d like to connect you here on LinkedIn. I’m a big believer that good people should meet good people and I think you should be in each other’s LinkedIn network.
By the way, I know that both of you are country boys with a couple of kids so if you were sitting next to each other on a plane you’d probably be new best friends.
Anyway, I’ve copied Jonathan on this email.
I’ll let you guys take it from here.
Important. Note that I open up my LinkedIn connections FIRST and set about introducing Jonathan to my connections FIRST. I DIDN’T ask Jonathan do that for me first. You see, I operate using the ‘give value first’ principle, just being comfortable in knowing that good people like Jonathan strongly tend to respond in kind to the behavior of others. It’s called reciprocity. By helping other people, we begin the process of giving and open the channel for receiving. So, by opening up my network and introducing Jonathan to people I know it’s only natural that he would want do the same for me. Needless to say, I have experienced the joy (and the commercial benefits) of reciprocity on untold occasions throughout all the years I’ve been in business.
Now here’s a question. Do you think that Larry would respond to my email? We’ll, based on my personal experience and the experience of many of my clients in using this method to create introductions, the answer is ‘yes’, most of the time.
If Larry didn’t respond I’m not saying he’s an idiot or anything like that. Maybe he didn’t see my email. Maybe it was buried in his inbox.
But if he had read it and didn’t respond, I’ve just got to assume he’s not interested in meeting good people that could potentially refer him business. And that’s okay. It’s not good business thinking, but that’s okay.
The dumbest thing Jonathan could do would be to respond with a message like this:
It’s good to meet you. Any friend of Ron’s is a friend of mine. Could I possibly handle your insurance, marketing, legal, accounting (or whatever) work and could you send me a pile of money? Or words to that effect.
That would be dumb. That would be like asking the girl to marry you on the first date.
Using my ‘give value first’ approach, Jonathan would do much better by responding with something like:
It’s good to meet you―and it’s good of Ron to put us in touch.
I’m connected to a lot of people here on LinkedIn and perhaps I could introduce you to some people or open some doors that would help you in some way. Are you up for a coffee?
You can be reasonably sure that Larry will be happy to meet up with Jonathan―and that could be the start of a lasting profitable business friendship between the two of them.
This is not some smoke and mirrors marketing trick. It’s not a ruse designed to extract money from the wallets of others. This is about creating mutually beneficial, give-and-take, win-win relationships. It’s about starting your relationships on the right footing. And there’s no better way of showing up in another person’s business world than to give value first to them.
Because of Jonathan’s offer to ‘give value first’ to Larry the likelihood of Larry getting to know, like and trust Jonathan is exponentially higher than any other way that Jonathan might choose to open up a relationship with Larry. Short of handing Larry a pile of money, there’s probably no other way that Jonathan is going to get his attention faster than offering to give value first to him. From there, it just a matter of allowing the relationship develop naturally over time―because at some point Larry is going to say, “Jonathan, tell me a little about what you do”. And as long as Jonathan doesn’t come across as overly salesy—and is crystal clear in getting his message across—Larry will happily refer Jonathan to people he knows. And, by extension, if Larry sees Jonathan’s product or service as a solution to his problem or the means to achieving his goal, he’ll happily buy from Jonathan too.
So there you go―a sure-fire strategy to get you in front of more of your prime prospects and ultimately, land you more business.
If you’re ever interested in learning more about what I do go to my website (www.gonetworking.com.au) or check me out on LinkedIn. And if I can ever answer any of your questions or you’d like to have a conversation with me on anything to do with growing your business, I’m only a phone call away (+61 413 420 538) or email away (firstname.lastname@example.org).