The Endless Referral System: cultivating new prospects and referrals (pt.1)

Rob Felber, president of Felber PR & Marketing, has been following Bob’s principles for over two decades. Rob may be one of the most networked guys in Cleveland and has cultivated over 1900 connections, as well as endless referrals…

Run out of prospects? It’s time to find new connections

"Each of us has a personal sphere of influence of about 250 people. People will do business with and refer business to those people they know, like and trust." - Bob Burg

Bob Burg, speaker and bestselling author of The Go-Giver and Endless Referrals, spoke in Cleveland about how to “build a prospecting and referral ‘machine’ to continuously create more sales than you ever dreamed possible.”

Who do I talk to now that my list of prospects has run out? Whether or not you have any existing contacts, it is always best to search for new prospects to help increase business, and make those lasting business and personal relationships. Bob said when we try to find someone new, we tend to seek in “desperation.” We lose our posture, which is interpreted as “we care [about our new prospects], but not that much.” So, how do we go about having good posture?

 

  • As long as you do your best then you can let go and begin to find new prospects.
    • Your existing clients are satisfied with the way things are going. So, it’s probably time to find new prospects. Why? Well, why not? This gives you more reason to expand your business.
  • Go to the people who want help – don’t branch out.
    • Not everyone needs help. In the meantime, just make conversation and eventually someone will turn to you. Getting a new prospect does not need to be done immediately, it’s all about the building relationship first in order for them to want to do business with you, which I couldn’t agree more.
  • Know that you’re responsible to the people, but not for the people in making decisions.
    • As a businessman or businesswoman, you’re responsible for pitching yourself to the potential prospects, but not to force them to make a decision. I will further discuss this in the next paragraph.

When we network for connections, we want win-win relationships that are generally caring for their wants and desires. They do not always have to like us in order to do business, but we want prospects who can say “yes” and are qualified to do business with you. Bob introduced president of Influence At Work (IAW) Robert Cialdini’s Six Principles of Influence to explain why people take certain actions. Most of us can agree that we live in a low trust society. But if you can communicate well with your prospects, you will gain their trust.

We live in an increasingly connected world. With apps on our phones that allow instant access to our entire sphere of influence. With every new person we meet or we have increased our connection to 250 people or more. OK, 249 if you discount Kevin Bacon. That right there is your ticket to a network of endless referral business.

In my next post, we’ll discuss additional strategies for building a relationship from the very first meeting.

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