Referral campaigns put the focus on the Advisor, have them appear needy and don’t line up with the foundation of trust-building which is built off of mutually serving intentions.
An introduction to a new client is the result of trust, bottom line. So beginning with the end in mind, when we look at how trust is formed: incrementally over time, we need to give it to get it; a picture emerges that suggests the allowance and acceptance of new introductions would be better served inside a “trusted advising” process.
But what does that look like? Let’s take a look at a client of mine to further understand.
Blake’s original process for asking for referrals was to only ask after the business was done. He would simply ask: “who else do you know that could benefit from the work that we’ve just done together?” Another favourite of his was: “Mr Client, thank you for your business, now that we have the ACME strategy implemented, has your confidence risen over your finances…who else do you know at work or in your family that could also benefit from feeling confident about their finances?”
Neither approach is horrible, and asking it better than not, however; even in this case, the timing of asking for these introductions can feel awkward for many.
We then changed Blake’s approach to align with his personal story and mission for what his practice is all about. For Blake, his mission and passion of being an Advisor are to help new Fathers create balance in their life and finances by taking away the mystery & ambiguity of how money works and can safely grow. By the way, we worked on getting him to this particular niche. Initially Blake’s “niche” was working with families, which wasn’t narrow enough.
By incorporating his mission into his value statement at the BEGINNING of the trusted advising process, he positioned himself secondary to his “cause.” When creating a community, followers are much more ready to back a movement versus a person. This is solely due to the distinction that trust is built off of mutually serving intentions.
This simple shift caused 2 things to happen: (1) Blake never again had to ask for referrals (2) clients immediately bought into the concept of “helping a friend” because they were “sold” on Blake’s mission. So the net result was Blake’s trust was elevated and so too were his sales.
Ty Hoffman, FMA CHC – is a practice acceleration coach helping Solopreneurs thrive.
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