How Referral Marketing Works
A story from Roger ...
POSTED BY JACKY SHERMAN ON 23/05/2018 @ 8:00AM
Can referral marketing work you? Unequivocally yes, it can, it is a chain of activities by various people, some of whom don't even know each other ...
Roger shared with me a great referral marketing story!
copyright: essendon accounts and tax
Each chain is different and some part of it happens by chance while others are planned. One thing every referral has is you as the pivotal point. You are the leader of the dance.
Here’s a lovely example from Roger Eddowes of Essendon Accounts and Tax, my accountant and referral partner.
Hi Jacky, you might be interested in this as proof of referral marketing which all came together today.
Sarah was recommended to me by a referral partner, Catherine, who introduced me via an email headed “introduction to an awesome accountant”. We have subsequently corresponded by email and arranged to meet on 13th June
I had a call from a prospective client Paul last week who said he had been referred by Sarah. We have corresponded, I have given some free advice, and today we have agreed to meet up to sign him up as a client. Unfortunately Paul couldn’t remember Sarah’s surname so I couldn’t work out which Sarah had referred me!
Then Sarah, the original new client, in one of our exchanges, asked if a Paul had called and bingo I now knew who had referred Paul at last! I thanked Sarah and apologised for not saying thank you earlier, but explained that I didn’t realise it was her.
She laughed, and apparently, their children know each other at the school gate and Sarah is often known as James’ Mum! She went onto say that if Catherine says I am awesome then she is happy to refer me before we even met.
I know you like stories - I thought this was a good one showing how referral partners like Catherine can work for you and the borrowing of credibility, Networking can even be at the school gate!
Let’s deconstruct this lovely story to identify the critical components that made it a success and a win for 5 people:
Roger came on my course and learnt how to build and motivate his cohort of referral partners to identify people who needed an accountant.
He then, over time, developed a referral relationship with Catherine based on trust and credibility so that she was happy to refer him as “an awesome accountant”.
He briefed her to spot opportunities for him as she went about her daily routine. So when she was talking to Sarah and the subject of needing an accountant came up she easily recommended Roger.
Roger responded to the introduction promptly and got in touch with Sarah and arranged to meet (it's surprisingly common for people to forget to do this bit!)
Now comes the exciting bit: how did Paul get into the picture? Sarah has trust in Catherine’s judgement, and this was reinforced by Roger’s prompt follow up. So much so that she was willing to refer him to Paul before she had met him. And Paul who only knew of her as “James' Mum” was willing to accept that recommendation. Wow! Trust by proxy can be so powerful if the relationships are solid.
I love Roger’s closing remark that "networking can happen at the school gate". We network with every interaction we make, not just going to breakfast with strangers!
However this story and Roger’s application of great referral marketing doesn't end there. He also shared this story with me:
First of all, he knows I like to collect stories for fun and to illustrate points in my training courses so it was helping me. Secondly, he has self-promoted in the nicest possible way what a good accountant he is and what great service he offers. Catherine referred him as an awesome accountant.
Then going full circle back to me, I’ve also promoted Roger as an awesome accountant by sharing this story with you. And at the same time promoted my own services as Roger learnt his referral marketing skills through my courses.
Now, you could play your part in widening the pool of people to benefit. Share this blog post with others, especially those who are disheartened because their networking isn’t producing results. Chances are they’re missing a piece of the dance that is referral marketing.
"Would you like to know more?"
If you'd like to find out more about referral marketing then why not book on one of my "Elevate your referrals with easy" workshops, and I'll show you how easy it can be!
Until next time ...
More about Jacky Sherman ...
I help people build and maintain productive working relationships both with their work colleagues and with a wider network to win more business. I do this by combining my skills in coaching, mediation and training with my extensive experience in senior management.
What I love most about my work is when my clients get those a-ha moments because I know they have seen for themselves the way that they want to move forward. Then they will achieve their ambitions.
Helping people who are having challenges with their working relationships gives me enormous pleasure. It was my privilege when working in health care to see how people working together can make the impossible seem easy and accomplish miracles as a result.
So helping people build or restore strong relationship with their colleagues makes even the hardest work easier, alleviates distress for the individual and reduces problems for the whole organisation.
In all this work trust is an essential ingredient to winning business so most of my work comes through referrals. Referrals come through strong business relationships so it was a natural extension for me to work with Ascentiv and train others in how to get consistent and predictable referrals from their network.
What a fantastic way to earn a living!
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