“It’s not about how many referrals you give; it’s about how qualified those referrals are. Please note – when you give crummy ‘referrals’ because you want to be seen as giving, everyone sees through it and your reputation suffers.” Excerpt from Lemonade Stand Selling
This is a subject that is near and dear to me because I see so many people struggle with it. There are some key points I’d like to address here.
1. It’s not about what you get but what you give. When you really work to connect two people you are helping to solve their problems and are seen as giving. People like to give to other givers. They seldom give to takers.
2. Don’t waste people’s time. Only give leads that are real. What do I mean by this? Don’t write something on a piece of paper and hand it to someone unless it has all of the information necessary for that person to follow up on it.
3. Make sure the people you are referring others to is open to receiving their call. One of the biggest mistakes people make is assuming their contacts are open to being contacted by other people. You don’t want to harm any of your relationships so watch it.
There are, in my estimation, 3 types of leads – cold, warm, hot.
Cold – you’ve heard/read a news story, seen a truck, building, or billboard and it made you think about someone in your group. You have an idea for them but no real connection. Make sure when you give them this information that you are clear about what you are giving them. Offering people information is valuable in and of itself.
Warm – you know someone at a company or organization that a person in your leads group is looking to penetrate. You provide the name, number, email and tell the group member they are free to reach out to your contact. This contact is most likely not the person they need to speak with but they are a door into the organization. BE SURE YOUR CONTACT WITHIN THE COMPANY IS AWARE THE GROUP MEMBER WILL BE CALLING THEM. Set everyone up for success – not failure. That includes you!
Hot – you have heard from someone you know that they are looking for a solution one of your group members can fill. You tell your contact that you know someone and either give your contact the group member’s information or let your contact know that you’ll share his/her information with your group member. Then call your group member to tell them and give them all of the information. Time is of the essence so don’t wait until your usual group meeting.
Another example of a hot lead is when you hear of a lead need in your group and you realize you know the exact kind of prospect for this person. Make the introduction. Fill out the lead form with all of the information necessary for the group member to reach out to the prospect including that YOU will make the connection. You want to grease the skids so to speak.
Remember this, when you are truly helping the people in your group and the people in your world you will be known as a connector and a giver. People love connectors and then will want to help you in return.
On the flip side, if you give garbage – a name only, a lead sheet that says ‘don’t use my name’, etc, you will be seen as someone who is only out for themselves and group members will stop giving you leads.
In Lemonade Lesson #19 we’ll talk about the importance of following up with the leads you get.