The other day I was being courted by a sales team for a particular service. It was something I needed, it was expensive and I had choices. I sent an information request to Choice A and the well thought out, informative e-mail drip ensued. It explained all the reasons I should choose them while not being overly salesy. There were a few videos, an automated scheduling tool and all of it lead to an appointment. I scheduled the time slot that worked for me, received confirmation of the appointment, a Google Calendar item, confirmation SMS days before, the day before, the morning of and 15 minutes prior. The anticipation was killing me. I mean, who on earth sends 4 confirmations? My palms were sweating, I sat by my phone, I cleared my desk. I was READY, there was no way I would miss that call. Wait, what?
After 10 minutes, I sent an email to my rep, “Hey, I am anxiously awaiting your call here”. He replied, “Oh yah, I am on another call I will ring you in a minute”. Wait, what? Another 10 minutes elapsed, no call. One more e-mail to my rep, “Hey, what’s up?”. Crickets.
One hour later, I appear to have been placed back into one of these magical marketing queues. “We are sorry we missed you at 1 PM today. Click below to re-schedule.” Um. No.
Unfortunately, this happens all too often. Salespeople market and market and generate a hard earned lead and then at the moment of truth, they miss the mark and effectively eliminate future referrals.
Ultimately, whether a client refers you is a matter of risk. How much does your customer risk by referring your service? “When someone gives you a referral, it means they are willing to risk their relationship with the referred.” – Jeffrey Gitomer. The tidal wave of tiny moments separate the referred from the rest.
Since we can all use a referability tune up, I have included 5 things you must do to win the tidal wave of tiny moments.
Be The Pro. Professionals are confident. Professionals provide a service only if it is valuable to the client. How well do you know your business? Can you get off script for a minute and actually align your clients needs with what you are selling them? If not, forget it. Order takers aren’t referred.
Be on Time. Dan Sullivan created The Referability Habits ™ that include just showing up. The reality is when someone is late, they put something ahead of the time they scheduled with you. Stuff happens, you don’t always have control but every time you are late you are creating risk for the person you are meeting with.
Do What You Say. Another Sullivan anchor, this one is not as obvious as it appears. How often do you hear parents telling their kids they are going to leave them somewhere if they don’t improve their behavior. Even the three year olds figure out that is a big load of crap. How often do we do this in business? “Yah, I’ll send that over”, or “Lets connect next week.” You know the ones. They seem harmless at the time, but if you are unreliable, you increase risk.
Be Likeable. Jeffrey Gitomer says “without a friendly relationship, there is no need to go further.” He is correct, if you don’t bring a smile to your clients face, you are not going anywhere. People refer those they like, people work with people like them. That is one reason there are so many different people who are wildly successful in sales. Likeability can be improved upon, there is a great WikiHow for that.
Add Value. One of the best ways to decrease risk for the referrer is to give them something unexpected. These value adds can be in the form of information, tools or resources. Use your pro status to change lives.
Being referable is a ticket to the game when it comes to building a winning value proposition. Take the time, make sure you are polished and ready to show up before you invest in the next campaign. The guy that didn’t call after his multitudes of confirmations is the most expensive type of sales rep. Don’t be him.