How To Approach A New Referral

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

Wooden blocks showing referral conceptSo you’ve achieved that great goal of getting a referral from a customer.

This is the holy grail in sales; getting a warm lead without having to do the marketing to achieve it.

How should you approach this referral?

Here are some ideas:

Basically, you need to know what links the two companies or people.

What is the business relationship between your customer and the person they are referring you to?

If they are a customer of your customer, your approach would be different to if they are simply a friend.

So be aware of what the link is between the referrer and the person you are going to approach.

Next, what does the referrer know about the person?

Are they in the same business?

What are their specific needs?

In other words, why precisely are they being referred to you?

It’s important to know this or you will be approaching the person blind.

Obviously, you’ll want to research the referred person’s company and analyse how you could be in a position to help.

If it’s clear that they could use your products or services, you can dig deeper to find out as much about their business as possible.

This is no different to how you would approach any other lead, but on this occasion you have a lead-in (the referrer).

Next, determine how you should get in touch. Email? Phone? Visit?

What would be best?

Plan what you will write or say to introduce yourself.

Here’s an outline (not a script) for how you might open the connection:

Hi Joe, It’s John Smith here from ABC Enterprises. Frank James from XYZ Ltd mentioned you may be interested in hearing more about our services. We help companies like yours reduce waste in their production processes.

Frank mentioned you might be interested in talking to me. Is this a priority of yours at the moment?

If so, maybe we could arrange a call soon to discuss your needs. That will help me align what we do with your goals.

Does next Friday fit into your schedule? If so, what time?

OK, good, I’ll send you a calendar invite after we’ve exchanged details and we can discuss options in going forward. Does that sound OK?

Of course, this should be about them and their business and not your products.

The discussion should open up the possibility of an appointment stemming from this live referral.

Try it and see if it is a useful addition to your prospecting portfolio.

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 25 May, 2018

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