Written by Bill Cates | @Bill_Cates
Are you referable? How do you know?
One barometer of your referability is that you’re getting referrals without asking for them. Are you? Do you have such a good initial process with new prospects and clients that they are thinking of people to refer you to before you even do much work for them? And as you work with your clients, do some of them continue to pass your name along and connect you with people?
This is one measure of your referability. And this counts, by the way. Getting referrals without asking for them is a testimony to your good work.
This article will give you a few ideas on how to become even more referable. By purposefully enhancing your referability, you'll get more referrals without asking for them -- and when you do ask, you’ll have more people receptive to your request.
A Referability ChecklistAlan Weiss, in his book Million Dollar Referrals, provides this list of qualities that contribute to one’s referability. Measure this against your current client relationships.
Think Process, Not Products If you’d like to get referrals sooner in your relationships, you need to think process over products. Selling a product will make you some money, but it’s unlikely to make you referable and create a word of mouth movement unless you have a process designed to deliver value every step along the way.
Do you have a clearly defined process through which you put most of your new clients? Is your process educational? Do you ask questions that get your prospects thinking in ways they haven’t thought before? Do you discuss expectations? Do you question their assumptions? Do you remain consistent with your process, or do you wing it? Use these questions to craft your sales process for ultimate referability.
Leverage Your ProcessHere are five steps that will ensure you get the most out of your process to make your clients happy and to generate referrals and introductions:
Never wing it when it comes to client interaction. Have processes in place, and document them with checklists. Then respect the checklists!