I land 100% of my clients today by way of introduction.
No adverts, no seminars and certainly no billboards or newspaper ads. And it’s not just plain old referral marketing that I rely on either. I carefully and systematically seek introductions only to potential right-fit clients.
After defining my right-fit client, I then went on to identify right-fit introducers – people who are in the perfect position and have the right networks to introduce me to a new client.
This means that my introducer would put me in front of people that he or she thinks would use or like my services. Most of my introducers are existing clients of mine, so the only reason they would do that is if they genuinely believe that I could make a difference to somebody else that they are fond of or that they like or treasure in their life.
A little something I do to help them along is sending them an outline or an ‘introductory email.’ Here’s how I go about it.
The Introductory Email
To make introductions as easy as possible for the people that would like to connect me to someone they know, I even draft an email telling the client exactly how to make the introduction for me.
I usually get copied in on that email, and it almost always results in a meeting with the client, me and the prospect. It could be over lunch, breakfast; it could be at the gym, an event – wherever our party of three is comfortable meeting.
Although I do have a script for my introducers, the script changes depending on the introducer and the prospect they are connecting me to. If my introducer and the prospect are close friends or family even, a scripted email introduction would sound unnatural.
To make sure the whole process is as natural and genuine as possible, what I give my introducers is key information about me, what I do and why I do it. I also add in details of my life outside work – things that define me as a whole person, so my prospects can get to know me a little better before they meet me.
I always include a note on my Marathon des Sables run, my CrossFit training, my wife and kids – all big parts of who I am and what I do with my time.
I also share links to all my social media channels for them to get a little more familiar. I need to be as much of a right fit for them as they need to be for me, after all.
Having lived in Dubai all my life, I’ve been fortunate enough to have the chance to cultivate a vast network of people around me – friends, family, clients, and all the connections built through the various communities and activities I’m a part of as a parent, an athlete, a speaker and more.
While my clients serve as my key centers of influence – because they have worked with me and have a complete understanding of what I have to offer – I do have non-client introducers, too.
One of the more structured networks I am a part of is my BNI (Business Network International) Chapter, BNI Dynamites. For those of you that aren’t familiar, BNI is a referral marketing network that helps people foster strong referral channels around themselves and their businesses.
For me, BNI serves as a means for me to add a few more individuals to my ‘Power Base’ of business connections, helping me further my efforts to generate business through my network.
The beauty of marketing through your network is that there is no set formula or a right or wrong way to go about it. A lot of it depends on who your ideal client is, and how you can get yourself in front of them through the people you know. You can activate your network in many different ways – via LinkedIn, email, meeting people at events and more.
I make sure to follow a few golden rules: first, I always ensure my introducer is well-educated about what I do and why I do it. This sometimes requires a meeting or many to get them up to speed with the goings-on of my work and my life.
Secondly, I’m particular about only getting introduced to right-fit clients. And last and most important, I’m always looking for genuine introductions from people that believe I have something valuable to offer to their contacts.
It cannot be just about a transaction. I like to say: It’s not business, it’s personal.