What do a lot of business referrals look like?
Are they pushy attempts at forced arranged marriages that create awkward situations?
Do they go all the way to the opposite end and take the weak form of “Here are three people you might want to consider?”
Is the person doing the referring seeing dollar signs (i.e. kickbacks) and sending every Tom, Dick, and Harry over in the hopes of banking the kickbacks?
Few Of These Referrals Are Likely To Be A Good Fit That Converts
If you’ve been following our series on closing the deal, you’ve likely noticed a theme – speed sells, waiting is a waste.
Weak-ass referrals waste everybody’s time.
Most (and worst) of all, from start to finish, the job doesn’t get done.
So let’s review the building blocks of
An Ironclad Referral That Delivers A Customer Who Shows Up With Credit Card Already In Hand
The key to this kind of referral is ownership.
Let’s say we were hanging out, at a networking function or a cigar shop full of entrepreneurs, and someone mentions they’d like to get a Moribund Frankfurter.
We could say “well, you know, there are several ways. You can use Great MFers, The Moribund Mastermind, or something like that. Pull out your phone and Google them. There are also companies that work directly with Moribund Frankfurter as distributors. And there’s this course on how to get a great deal on them using eBay.”
Strong Referral: Example One (Niche Service)
Here’s the strong version of the referral we showed you above.
“I’ve got the guy who can do this for you. His name is Dave Fortunatti. He gets people the best Moribund Frankfurters and knows the people who design them. Just a few months ago he put a buddy of mine in touch with them and they did a custom build for him. Would you like to speak with Dave? Yes? Tell you what. Let me send him a note and we’ll go from there. Okay?”
By not just giving Dave’s contact information to our friend, stating we want to speak with him first, we create the frame that Dave is a high-end sort of dude who works with preferred customers only, thereby instantly raising Dave’s cachet with our friend and setting the stage for Dave’s high prices to seem like a bargain.
We’d check with Dave and ask him if he wants a direct connection, or if he wants the person referred to his website. Then, the moment Dave responds to us, we’d do one of two things, depending on Dave Fortunatti’s preferences:
- Send an email (not a social media group message for crying out loud – do BUSINESS, not B.S.) to both our friend and to Dave Fortunatti, uniting the two conversations in two sentences and posting each other’s phone number.
- Send our friend an e-mail saying, “Go to Dave Fortunatti’s website, GreatMFers (dot) com, and click the Services tab. When you contact them, mention my name so they know who you are.”
Strong Referral: Example Two (Commodity Service)
A very popular request we get is “what’s the best company to build display booths for conference exhibits?”
We love this one, because a friend of ours (one of our readers) is a sales representative for one of the top companies in that industry. In fact, he’s sitting right next to us at the cigar shop as we write this!
While others post URLS on the thread with comments like “they’re really good”, our contribution looks more like this:
Speak with my guy (NAME) at (COMPANY). E-mail him at (his email) or call (his direct number).
https://www.linkedin.com/in/HISURL (sharing his LinkedIn profile establishes him as an authority figure, with years of experience, not just the guy who processes the order – and puts a FACE to the NAME)
I told him who you are and he knows you will be reaching out (by the time we add to the thread, this will be a true statement- also notice the embedded command!)
On the website (COMPANY WEBSITE) go to “Trade Show Options” to find what you want, and then speak with my guy.
He will take care of this for you.
With this kind of STRONG referral standing out head and shoulders above the others, with the implied personal connection already in place, who do you think gets this person’s business?
(If you need a display booth, just let us know. We’re following our own rule here.)
See The Difference? Feel The Difference?
Make sure your referral partners are giving you THESE kind of referrals, and you’ll close more.
Your referral partners will look better to their friends, and feel better about referring you more.
And make sure, every day in every way, you are taking the actions that cause your referral partners to want to refer you more.