The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast
The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast

Episode · 3 weeks ago

Building Your Referral Network

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Everybody knows about the need to build their referral network, but very few people talk specifically about how best to do so. Many sellers are uncomfortable asking for referrals. How do you request a referral without coming off as pushy, or even desperate? Force Management Facilitator Antonella O’Day joins us to share tips for building your referral network, including how and when to ask for referrals.

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Be Memorable. If you genuinely come from a place of service, if you come from a mindset of customer first, it'll pay big dividends long term. You're listening to the audible ready podcast, the show that helps you and your team's sell more faster. will feature sales leader sharing their best insights on how to create a sales engine that helps you fuel repeatable revenue growth, presented by the team if force management, a leader in BTB sales effectiveness. Let's get started. Hello and welcome to the audiblelready sales podcast. I'm racial clad Miller, joined today by Antonella. O Day, hi and Sanella. Hi, Rachel, how are you? I'm good. Thanks for coming back on the show today. Always happy to be here now. We're happy, happy to have you. We're going to be talking about building your referral network. You know, it's not what you know, it's who you know. And, Antonella, everyone knows we need to build and maintainer networks, but very few...

...people talk specifically about the how. How do you do it? So we're gonna dive into that a little bit today. For the listeners. I'd love to hear how you did it when you were selling Antonilla. Did you have a rhythm around referrals? What were your best practices? Well, I would be lying to you if I said right out of the gate I did not. Initially, for sure, it was part of me that felt that I didn't need it, that I could just engage customers in a traditional say and exceed my targets. The other part of me felt uncomfortable asking, and that was driven off of my own internal struggle of needing to ask for help what I perceived to be helped. I felt I was putting my customers out in some respect. After my first couple of years, my experience was that both of those concerns carried no weight and that I was actually preventing myself from maximizing my performance potential. Ultimately, and what I mean by that is I was concerned about the idea of asking for help. I wasn't really asking for help...

...per se. I was asking for an introduction, I was asking for connection. I was still doing all the work to build the relationship, connect their problems to our value, bring that account in and if I ask for a referral at the right time, I wasn't putting the customer at at all I'm a big believer in the theory of reciprocity. You need to give to get, and in most cases I've provided something of value, whether it was an easy implementation, great outcomes, something tangible was given to them. When that's the case, as humans, we feel very often that we want to provide something in return. So I actually help kind of close the loop in terms of just that whole idea of giving and getting. Yeah, I think that's a great way to frame it for yourself. We shouldn't feel shy about that. So let's start with getting a rhythm around getting that referral business. You mentioned it. You want to do it at the right time. So when...

...is the right time? When do you ask? Forever Fer all my experience been this is a little bit of trial and error. Where you ask is just probably as important as asking itself. The best way of looking at it is when do you typically add value? When does your champion, your stakeholders, your economic fire typically get that sense of this is or was a really good choice, or where it? When do they typically get excited about working with you? It could be after a POC, it could be after the deal is signed or after an implementation, but the customer should feel they receive some value from working with you. Going back to that theory of reciprocity, figure out when that time typically occurs and then incorporated into your selling motion each and every time. Now that may not work consistently for every customer, but I think a seller's we tend to have a good sense of when they're excited about being in that partnership with us, that's the ideal time to ask.

So, on the other side of that, is there a wrong way to do it? Simple answer short. You know, I remember some sales leaders telling their teams ask every person on every conversation for a referral. I personally think that is too much and I think that lacks vision and strategy. When you ask for one, you want it to be a no brainer. You want your customer to respond. Of course I'll give you one. So to my previous point, asking when you've delivered some of that value, when they are excited. Timing is going to be really important here. If they were excited two months ago, you miss that prime window. So it's something that we, as customer facing people, need to stay very close to. Second the way we ask is really important. The most common ask I here is, do you know anyone who could benefit from working with us? It doesn't sound bad, but in reality we're making it challenging for our customers. They...

...hadn't put any thought into it. So you're asking them now to put some real thought and brain power behind something that's not a priority for them. Chances are they'll probably say something to the effect of possibly, let me think about it, I'll get back to you right and guess what, they don't get back to us, and it's not because they don't want to, but life gets in the way and it's not a priority. So I recommend that, if you're asking for referrals, do some homework. Be Specific. For example, you could look at their linkedin account. Who Do they know that you want to know? Then the ass could sound something like I'm so glad you're happy with the outcome so far. I wanted to ask it for some help. I noticed you were connected with Jill Smith. Can you give her a call or send her a message while we have a few minutes and make an introduction for me? Now you're closing that gap. You're not forcing them to think. You put a specific person on the table. You're asking for a specific introduction and hopefully, you know, usually those don't take a lot of...

...time. Maybe they can do it right on the spot and you will aviate them having to think about it getting back to you all those things that potentially could stand in the way. So you take guessing out of the equation and it's more likely to happen. The one add I would also put into that equation, because I laid it out pretty simply, is, if you want to add some impact, provide your customer with some proof points to share. It's great that they know someone and they can say, Hey, want to introduce you this person. Here's who you know, here's who they work for and this is what they do, but it's so much more impactful if you can say and by the way, here's, you know, some of the outcomes they achieve, brothers or if they have some measurable outcomes themselves, including that in the email as well. When you think about it, asking for furls is, you know, like everything else, that takes some planning on the front end. Yeah, absolutely. So. A couple things about well, with top of mine, as I do that all the time, where...

I actually, you know, ask somebody to do something and then I say, Hey, I'll be happy to write the email for you, you know, just so you can just or I'll send you something you can easily forward and then I get such a better response. or it because it's easy for them to your point. Yeah, and you bring up a great point. Create a template for yourself that you could share with your customers and say, Hey, I don't want to put you out, I already have a temple that you could use. Can I send it to you or can I send it to you now, and can you pass it on to the person I'm asking for an adoption to? They'll probably be relieved to do that. Yes, absolutely. The only thing that came to mind as you were talking is this idea of the right time. But you don't want to wait too long. And what we don't want to happen is we're looking at our forecast or are the account we're working and say, oh my gosh, I need pipeline. Let me go talk to the last dozen customers and ask them for referrals. It's that just feels greasy, not a good way to do it. Now you have to come from a good place, a genuine place, and...

...there's parts of the process that they're sizzle around, there's excitement, there's good conversation taking place like that's the ideal time to leverage that relationship. So utilize that and don't miss those opportunities when they present themselves. Yeah, last question. How do you best nurture the people who do this for you? You know, I'm a big believer that the selling or buying cycle never ends. Maintaining relationships over time or critical to maintain the current account that you're working with, but I think we all know that people are constantly emotions. So maintaining those relationship should they also make a move, and building your network out that way. The question you should be asking yourself is, what can I do to continue to bring value? Can you provide some insight? Can you send them a white paper that's relevant? Can you do something that resonates with them on a person snow level? Stay on our front, be memorable. If...

...you genuinely come from a place of service, if you come from a mindset of customer first it'll pay big dividends long term. Yeah, and then when you really need that relationship, you'll be glad you did all those little steps along the way. Absolutely a lot of great types hearing and to Noah. I bet you have a great network of people that have been nurtured. I'd love to I'd love you to kind of wrap it up for us and give us a nice little bottom line as we wrap. So we spent a good bit of time talking about the how and an you go to mark your person, they're conflict thinking, well, what's in this for me? So I want to spend a moment reminding our listeners of the outcomes associated with referrals that we might lose sight of when we have so much going on. The first one is they potentially lead to faster closes. I mean, we've all been in sales cycles that last forever. Referrals already coming warm, so you already...

...have access. There's a level of trust baked into the equation. They're more opening to listening to you and that very often leads so quicker buying cycles. So if you're looking to shorten that and be more efficient and you're buying cycles like definitely leverage referrals. The second thing is bigger sales. I read that referrals tend to spend twenty five percent more than a typical lead. I attribute that to the level of comfort for from both sides. You're comfortable because you've been formally introduce someone. They're comfortable because they've been formally introduced to you. Now the connection starts at a different place, so they tend to feel more confident that whoever referred them made a good choice themselves, so they'll be more comfortable potentially spending more. And the last thing I'll leave the audience with is referrals. To get referrals, if somebody's introduced you by way of referral, think about it. If they had a great experience, they're likely to introduce you to somebody else, and boy, that makes life a lot easier as...

...a seller. So those are the three big takeaways in terms of outcomes to consider when focusing on what areas your business you know have potential for growth, and referrals is definitely one of them. Thank you so much, and Jonella. Thanks, Rachel. All right, everybody, go build that referral network. Let us know how it works for you. Appreciate you listening to the audible ready sales podcast. At force management, we're focused on transforming sales organizations into elite teams. Are Proven methodologies deliver programs that build company alignment and fuel repeatable revenue growth. Give your teams the ability to execute the growth strategy at the point of sale. Our strength is our experience. The proof is in our results. Let's get started. Visit US at force MANAGEMENTCOM. You've been listening to the audible ready podcast. To not miss an episode, subscribe to...

...the show in your favorite podcast player. Until next time,.

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