A System to Instantly Find New Referral Channels

A System to Instantly Find New Referral Channels. In Blackboard Fridays Episode 90, Jacob talks about Marketing. Need this implemented into your business? Talk to the international business advisor who can do exactly that – Contact Jacob, Learn More, or Subscribe for Updates.

I run coaching sessions for new state directors at one of my international clients – and we focus on lead generation, sales, and team building conversations that apply to any new team leader in business. A unique challenge some of them have, however, is building up a region where they don’t have existing relationships.

Maybe you’ve experienced this too? It’s not just that you may have moved to a new area geographically. Often a promotion to a leadership or sales role, or even just the act of starting your own business, moves your skill set into a new area of capability. You want to hit the ground running, but you’re hamstrung by a lack of specific relationships to go and meet with.

You know the incredible value of building strategic referral channels (see Episode 48 here for more), but where to begin?

In this week’s #BlackboardFridays episode, I will walk you through a simple and targeted conversation that you can have – even with a cold prospect – to instantly give you a list of new referral channels for you to explore. It’s that easy – click below to watch the video.

Who is Jacob Aldridge, Business Coach?

“The smart and quirky advisor who gets sh!t done in business.” Back independent since 2019.

Since April 2006, I’ve been an international business advisor providing bespoke solutions for privately-owned businesses with 12-96 employees.

At this stage you have proven your business model, but you’re struggling to turn aspirations into day-to-day reality. You are still responsible for all 28 areas of your business, but you don’t have the time or budget to hire 28 different experts.

You need 1 person you can trust who can show you how everything in your business is connected, and which areas to prioritise first.

That’s me.

Learn more here. Or Let’s chat.

Transcript

Happy Friday Blackboarders. I work with a lot of professional services companies. A lot of B2B relationships and a lot of individuals who are responsible for both bringing in work and delivering that, passing that on to a team and delivering it.

They know, as you know and I know, that referrals are the best way to generate new clients, new leads, new opportunities. They’re not necessarily going to give you the highest volume for that activity portion. But they generally convert much faster and at a much higher rate.

So I was sitting with one of my clients recently, and they said, “Jacob I understand that, but I just don’t know that many people.” “We’re fairly new into the business.” And they had repositioned themselves away from a corporate environment, to a situation where they were responsible for bringing in clients into this professional services.

For the first time in their life, they had to go to market and actually do that lead generation and sales. They just didn’t know who to talk to. They didn’t know where to start, and so we ran this exercise. Creating an instant referral network a long list of people that they could go out and meet with immediately. Here’s the conversation that they went and did. Stay tuned to the end and I’ll tell you the results.

They did have some client relationships. Even if you don’t have client relationships, you will know some people in your target market, and you can substitute them in the central circle here. Now they went out to the client and they asked the following question. They said, “Look, I want to work with more businesses like you.” “You have a lot of different service providers who obviously help you and have helped you grow your business.” “Those service providers will also know other awesome businesses like yours, so I’d like to meet them.” “Could you please share with me, the name of your bank manager.” “ Who your lawyer is.” “Who do you have to do your accounting and do you have a different bookkeeper?” Have you got a different bookkeeping service? “Have you got, or have you worked with in the past, a good business coach?” “Have you maybe got an insurance broker or a mortgage broker, or a financial planner,”  “somebody who’s helped you with that aspect of the business?”

You can go through a long list of any of the different suppliers that work with your client, or your target client. Because they will also work invariably with a lot of other ideal clients for you. And then you say, “Mrs. Client, Mr. Client. “Would you feel comfortable just sending an email introducing this person to me, and asking me to please give them a call?”

Now again if you’ve got a half decent relationship with the client, they’re not going to say no to that. You’re not asking them to make a referral, to make a hard sell, to really lie about who you are. You’re just asking for an introduction and you’re taking responsibility for the follow up.

That’s a critical part of any referral by the way, is making sure that you have the responsibility to follow it up, rather than the ball being in the other persons court. You’ve got more interest in doing it, so you’ll make sure it happens.

So my client went and did this, and suddenly he now has seven meetings booked. Not with people who might be a client, although some potentially some could be, but with people who themselves have a whole list of people that they know who might help.

My client is now going into each of these and is starting the strategic referral channel process. He knows that some of these won’t work, he knows that the accountant might end up being a prickly control freak who doesn’t want to open up his books. And that’s okay, cross that person off.

But the business coach and the lawyer, or the financial broker, or whoever it might be that he gets on best with might have some opportunities for them to do some events together, to do some guest blogs, or might even be able to start introducing him directly.

Suddenly he’s gone from, I don’t know anybody, to I have all of these meetings booked. I’m creating opportunities, and I’m looking for benefits to help these other businesses as well as my own. I’ve seen this work in the past in a way where we add even more relationships and connections in.

You can create this circle of referrals, this golden circle of network who are each working together, building relationships, not just with you, but with each other to create even more referrals. Again. it’s critical in that situation that these people do get along, they are aligned, and they are all working with the same type of business.

It’s unlikely that from one client you’re going to get a perfect storm of all of those different people. If you’re struggling, if you’re not sure who to go and talk to, and you don’t think that anybody cares, go and have a chat to one client. Ask them a half a dozen questions, and the next thing you know you’ll have activity, your diary will be booked, and the referrals that come from that will flow.

Next Steps

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