Sellers are programmed to take advantage of outreach to generate opportunities, but it’s important that we don’t forget to ask for the referral.
We understand the importance of cold calling and cold outreach, but that’s doing things the hard way. We do it over and over again without ever considering whether it’s the best way.
This is a reboot of an earlier episode of The Sales Evangelist, but it’s an evergreen topic. Asking for referrals always makes sense for motivated sales professionals.
I would never suggest you shouldn’t use cold outreach or cold calling to connect with your prospects. I do it myself and I’ve generated great opportunities that way. But it isn’t the only way to generate them.
Sometimes we forget to ask for referrals. So as a sales pro, how can you remember? What else can you do to remind yourself to take the easy route to generating business?
Put it on your calendar.
Create a habit
Create a weekly goal to generate three referrals per week. If your goal is to get three referrals per week, even closing one of those referrals will change your results. Once you institute the habit of generating referrals, you’ll establish a pattern of one deal per week that closes. And that’s if you’re not particularly good at it. If you’ve taken our TSE Certified Sales Training, you could possibly do even better.
You can build on that habit and that improvement. That will amount to more money for you and your organization.
If each of those deals amounts to $10,000, you’ll generate $40,000 a month. If you’re responsible for $80,000 a month, then half of your business will come from referrals. If you’re currently not generating any, that’s a pretty great increase.
Salespeople don’t necessarily like accountability. Do it anyway. Tell a coworker or sales leader your goal. Join our Facebook group and tell someone your goal.
Accountability is important. When I worked as a sales rep, I shared my current projects with my sales manager. She saw that I was motivated and proactive and I eventually got better opportunities than other people on the team.
If you share your goal with your leader, he or she will certainly follow up to help you stay accountable. If you’re an entrepreneur working internally at an organization, you can benefit from the same kind of accountability.
Set calendar invites
Establish specific times in your schedule when you’ll pursue referrals. Just as you set time to prospect and pursue inbound leads, set time for referral prospecting. Set 30 minutes each day to reach out to your clients for referrals.
It’s such an easy task that most of us won’t do it. We’re programmed to do things the hard way; to pick up the phone and dial. These simple projects can gain us business, but referrals don’t always happen naturally.
You must ask for the referral.
“Don’t Forget to Ask” episode resources
Connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This episode is brought to you by the TSE Certified Sales Training Program. I developed this training course because I struggled early on as a seller. Once I had the chance to go through my own training, I noticed a hockey-stick improvement in my performance.
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