The power of introducers

by Andy Lopata on April 16, 2013 · 0 comments

leadership meetingJust as you need to be very clear on who your ideal referrals are when speaking to your Champions, so it is important for you to think about how you can best help the people you want to refer.

Whereas a referral to a prospective client may lead to just one transaction taking place, one to an introducer could lead to a number of transactions over a period of time, and to long-term partnerships. It may, therefore, be far more powerful for you to refer potential introducers to your network, rather than just clients.

Those introducers will often be in either the same or allied industries.  ‘The Holy Quadruplicate’ of solicitors, accountants, financial advisors and banks, for example. They all deal with the same customers, by whom they are trusted as professional advisors and talk about similar issues, but provide (on the whole) non-competitive solutions. They are, in theory, well placed to refer each other on a regular basis.

The most frequent reason you will face an initial rebuff from a prospective service user when you try to set up a referral is that people don’t want to be introduced to someone they may have to pay money to. Unless, of course, they recognise a greater cost of not doing so. 

For that reason, it is much easier for you to refer your contacts to potential introducers of new business, who are not going to face paying out as a result of the referral, but may in fact find themselves rewarded from the introduction as well.

Not only is it easier to make a connection to a potential introducer, it can also be a lot more powerful. Introductions to people who are talking to many of their potential clients, who are in a position to recognise when those prospects need your help and whose advice is trusted by those prospects can be the most valuable connection you could give.

To be truly effective, referrals to introducers need to lead to a ‘win/win’ situation, where both parties benefit from the connection. Why would someone introduce a stream of business to someone else he hasn’t met before? The ideal introducer relationship is a two-way process.

Before referring to possible introducers I would, however, suggest checking with both parties that such a connection would be of interest.

Andy Lopata
Labelled ‘Mr Network’ by The Sun, Andy Lopata was called ‘one of Europe’s leading business networking strategists’ by the Financial Times. The co-author of two books on networking, Andy‘s third book, ‘Recommended: How to Sell Through Networking and Referrals’ was published by Financial Times Prentice Hall in July 2011.

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