Do you remember when you joined your first formal referral or leads group? There was always instruction on how to network, give referrals and structure your 30/60 second promotional to ask for the kind of referrals you wanted. In many cases these did not deliver the results you were expecting. Networking is a marketing tactic that requires planning and structure.
How to make networking work!
Power Partners position you to strategically refer and receive referrals from people calling on the same ideal customer. In one of my early networking groups there was a fee only financial planner who built her power group within the organization. She had a CPA, mortgage broker, realtor, insurance broker; all the key people she could refer her clients to and in return could refer her.
Building a proven network of providers who can help you add value to your client relationships, takes time but it will change your results dramatically.
Here’s how to make it work:
Do What You Say You Will Do: In this technology age, trust is an important value, don’t risk not being able to deliver on a promise – if you don’t deliver, the empty excuses only serve to un¬dermine your credibility. People who refer you have to know they can rely on you.
Your Engagement Process: Your referral partners need to understand and share your marketing process. Educate them on how you logically move customers and prospects through your customer experience.
Educate, instead of selling: One of the things we work on in Mind Masters is, knowing what makes members different in the cluttered marketplace. One member realized how much she educates her clients to help them make the right choices about what they want. Her industry is not noted for that.
Add value beyond price: In Bob Burg’s book the Go-Giver, his first law, the Law of Value, states; that your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment. Small business owners find this is a tough one because we often have way to measure the value they bring. The key here is to work tirelessly to understand, quantify and enhance the value your customer receives and the rest will take care of itself.
Do something that makes you visible: Visibility in this technology age has everyone scrambling. You need to set yourself apart by strategically building and managing your own personal brand for maximum visibility and effectiveness. Your personal brand differentiates you and articulates your unique promise of value.
Exceed expectations: In business you need to set the proper expectations and then it’s a pretty simple matter of exceeding them. This might include understanding and attracting the right customers, laying out exactly how you work to get results, teaching customers what’s expected of them, and even saying so once and awhile.
Focus on even one of these practices above and watch how much more referable you become.
The Challenge: Review each of the marketing processes and look to see how you can revise, restructure or fine tune them.