Spring is a refreshing time of the year, we see the sun more and trees are budding with new life. As a business owner spring can be an inspiration to refresh and renew business. We get a spring in our step and look at our business with new life. I see more people coming out to networking events and looking to make new contacts to grow their business.
New relationships are an important part of business. Yet, may I suggest that you work on your existing ones?
When I work with my clients we talk about where are they in the referral relationships that they have. There are 3 main phases in a referral relationship: Visibility, Credibility, and Profitability. In any referral relationship, we work our way from Visibility to Credibility and a few might reach Profitability in time.
Here’s a quick review of the 3 phases.
Visibility is when you know the person’s name, profession, and you recognize them when you see them. Because we’re talking about a relationship, that means that person needs to know your name, profession, and can recognize you.
Credibility is when some trust has been established and expertise has been shown. You find the person to be referable and they find you referable.
Profitability is when you have such a strong and well-developed referral relationship that you are proactively finding referrals for each other. You’ve built a system where you are consistently sending each other high-quality referrals on a regular basis.
It’s important to know where you are in a referral relationship. When you know where you are in the referral relationship, you can determine what actions to take to build the relationship deeper and to better educate that person on how to refer you business.
You want to actively have people in all stages of the referral relationship. Some relationships will last, others won’t. Not every relationship progresses past Visibility and very few actually reach Profitability. However, a strong network contains many relationships of variable depths.
For that spring boost to your business, try this referral tip: reach out to your deepest and best referral relationships. Give them what I call a “how are you” call. See how they are doing, how you can help them with their business, and remind them you are there for them. Invite them to do a one to one and strategize how you can help each other grow your businesses.
Your deepest and best referral relationships are the ones who are most likely to take action and send you a referral the quickest! They know you the best, they know your business and how to refer you, and they want to help you because they believe in you!
For quick results to spring your business forward, connect with your best referral relationships first. And for long-term success, keep building on the existing relationships as well creating new ones.