3 ways to get more business from your referral group

by Richard White on October 18, 2013 · 0 comments

Thumbs UpReferral groups can be an excellent source of sales leads for your business. But what if you run a business that is much harder to refer business to? For example, you do something very specialist like horse dentistry, or you only do business with large companies. If you are doing all the right things and yet not getting enough business from your referral group, consider also asking for these three types of referral:

 

Alliances

In most industries there are types of company that are complementary to each other and share similar clients. For example, a web design company and a web hosting company can often make good alliance partners. Working together you can cross-refer each other and even do joint marketing. Rather than just asking for referrals to potential clients, ask your referral group for introductions to potential alliance partners.

Competitors

Just because two businesses do the same thing does not mean they directly compete. For example, if you only work with larger companies, then a ‘competitor’ which only works with smaller companies could be in a position to refer business to you, and visa-versa. In addition, you may offer specialist products and services that your competitors are not interested in. Ask your group for referrals to competitors and look for ways to collaborate.

Networking opportunities

Sometimes people in your referral group will know the kind of people you want to be referred to. Unfortunately, it is not always easy for them to make an introduction. They may, however, be able to arrange something less formal which gets you the opportunity to meet them. For example, at a dinner party or social event. I recently got myself invited to a corporate hospitality event by a specialist IT lawyer who is a member of my referral group. I got to meet many decision makers in just one evening! Networking opportunities are an excellent way for your referral group to make introductions without having to explain what you do or even look for an opportunity.

Richard White
Richard White is a sales coach and trainer. He specialises in helping IT consultants win more sales through effective networking. Richard is the author of ‘The Accidental Salesman Networking Survival Guide’ and is a highly sought after speaker on the subjects of networking and soft selling.

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