Building Profitable Relationships, Rule 1
Rule 1: The Law of 250
It's not who you know, it's who your clients, contacts and potential referral partners know.
Let me explain the law of 250. If you ask someone how many people they would like to invite to their wedding on average the answer is 250. This is because on average everyone knows 250 other people. Those 250 are part of their personal referral network.
These relationships include family, friends, co-workers, business associates and a whole host of other people. If you want to be referred to or do business with this network, you have to earn the right by building the relationship. People will not share their contacts unless you’re deserving; just providing a good product or service is only the first step, not the last.
In today's marketplace benefit selling no long works.
If you’re still talking about what wonderful service you give your clients or your fantastic products or opportunity, you’re preaching to the wrong audience. I am always amazed at business owners and professionals who talk about their fantastic service but never communicate with their “customer” after the sale or at best put them on some lame e-mailed newsletter service which gets caught in the spam filter and never read.
People today don’t want to be your client or business associate!
They want a relationship. Clients do not refer other clients. They refer and do business with people that they have an existing relationship with. They refer people in their personal network, to other people in their personal network.
I have met literally thousands of business owners and professionals who are just getting buy because they spend their time looking for clients or leads instead of using this time to build relationships. When they do manage to get a client they don’t even bother to send the client a thank you note. Then they don’t understand why they don’t get referrals.
Here are some important questions to ask.
- Do provide a service, product or opportunity or a value based relationship?
- Do you spend your time looking for clients or building relationships?
- When you first meet someone, online or locally, do you immediately promote your product, service or opportunity, or do you build the relationship to discover common interest and if there is even a need?
- How much of your marketing budget is devoted to building long lasting relationships with your prospects, client and possible referral sources?
- How do you start to build a quality relationship?
- How do you nurture your relationships?
- Are you getting a good number of referrals? If not, re-evaluate the last 5 quesions.
- Do you follow the laws of attraction?
Answer the above questions and then act on your results. If you find areas that need work, don't try to fix them all at once. Instead, follow Benjamin Franklin's approach and select one question each week and make it a priority to work on it every day. I suggest you schedule the area that you are working on into your daily to-do list and treat it like an appointment you must keep.
In part 2 we'll look at building and categorizing a list of contacts for maximum results.