Jacky Sherman

The Consultant's Consultant

07970 638857


Understanding Referral Marketing

A story about the goose and the golden egg ...

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Not all stories I tell are true, some can be metaphors to get across a key concept. This one combines both ...

You can analogise referral marketing to farming geese that lay golden eggs!

You can analogise referral marketing to farming geese that lay golden eggs!

copyright: zoomteam / 123rf

When I first set up my business seven years ago, I devised a short talk using the goose that laid golden eggs to explain our strategy in referral marketing. A year later I turned it into a video.

It's been sitting on YouTube ever since and a lot has happened since then, including a re-branding from the Referral Institute to Asentiv. And quite honestly I'd forgotten about the video and the talk.

The real story is a few weeks ago Ashish Kumar of Web Alliance reminded me about it. He recently completed our programme and he has been very successful in using our methods to build his business.

From a complete novice at networking his order books are now full of referrals. He told me that this video had been a major influence in his decision to work with me. As he put it, as a novice networker at the time he had found networking a bit of a mystery, but the little story behind the video just made it all make sense. Job done, my goosey friends!

In essence, the plot goes like this: You can compare networking with going out into a field looking for eggs. Not just any eggs, but golden ones. These are your ideal clients, those you really want to work with.

Now, when you find such an egg you could just take it home, but that might mean that the goose that laid it wandered off into someone else's field and laid other eggs there. So, if instead you took the goose home and fed and watered it and kept it warm and safe from the foxes, that goose (your referral source) will lay you egg after egg after egg.

Now, imagine if you went out into the fields and looked for more geese who also lay the sort of eggs you want. You bring those home, feed and water them, keep them warm and safe from the foxes. They will lay you egg after egg after egg as well. So, now you've got a goose farm and don't often need to go out into the fields. Instead, you simply need to feed and water the geese on your farm.

This simple message is that a better way to network is to go looking for people who know lots of your ideal clients. If you look after their needs, whatever they may be, then they will refer you time and time again.

The other message in this blog post is to check in with the people who actually bought into you. What was it that made them decide to work with you? So, what piece of your marketing needs to be brought out of the wings and back centre stage again.

"Would you like to know more?"

I'd welcome your comments on the video. Has it stood the test of time? Do give me a call on 07970 638857 or click here to ping me an email and let's see how I can help you find some golden egg laying geese.

Until next time ...


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07970 638857