Referrals from reliable third-party sources are one of the best ways to bring new and repeat leads for the business. But it takes more than just signing a referral agreement to have a successful referral relationship.
In this new 2 Minutes On series titled How to Make Referral Relationships Work, discover the eight ways in which you can really make a difference in your referral relationship.
Navigate seamlessly through the rest of the series by clicking on one of the links below.
- Part 1 – Why Do Relationships Fail?
- Part 2 – Re-Engineer Your Business Processes and Get the Top 5
- Part 3 – Create a Combined Value Proposition, Systemise, and Make It Easy
- Part 4 – Qualify More, Add Value, and Commit
Here’s Jeff Cooper to tell you more about crafting a combined value proposition for your partnership, systemising your engagement points, and making it easy for partners to do the work.
The following text is a transcript of the video.
Create a Combined Value Proposition
Understand and commit to paper and create a tool that outlines your combined value proposition.
You see, we have to explain to clients why they’re better off if we work together as partners. It’s about understanding the things that are going on in their world and matching it back to the two businesses.
Too often, when we sell or when we refer, we tend to sell the businesses separately: “Here’s my business value proposition — oh, and by the way, you should buy something over here.” Now that’s an additional sale and something that could potentially be done later.
What we want to do is combine those value propositions so that it’s really clear that we’re actually all better off if we work together.
Systemise Engagement Points
Are you going to run events together, have approaches to each other’s databases, or joint lead service to clients? Or look at other areas in your systems or process to make sure that the businesses are working together.
Top-of-mind awareness of your referral partners is the number 1 thing that drives leads in. If I’m ready to be working with a referral partner, if I understand their value proposition, and I know how to look for the types of things that they can help with — I can’t help but see those issues come up with my clients day to day. And that’s the key.
So, we all have a calendar where across the 12 months, we clearly outline all the areas that we’re going to engage and work together and the value we’re going to share with clients. This way, it’s impossible for these new-business professionals not to have the referral partner’s interest top of mind.
Make It Easy
You’ve spot the opportunity or they have for you, but now you have to write the proposal. And of course, your client needs it fast because it’s a big issue that’s important to them.
Now where referral relationships fall down at this stage is getting the profiles, understanding how we’re going to work together, and getting the commercial terms of working. It takes a lot of extra work!
So new-business professionals in organisations tend to find it complicated. And if they can get the proposal out that suits need #1 and matches their service much faster than they can, with your service included, of course they’re going to go for that option.
So we need to make it so easy for them to include our partners and easy for us to include our partners.
How do you do that?
Get their profiles, the presentation templates, the documentation, the sales proposals, whatever it is that you use to help clients understand your business. You want to make sure that you have the tools from them to “drag and drop” quickly, and they have the tools from you to do the same.
Are you interested on becoming Step Change’s referral partner? Fill in the referral partner form below, and let’s chat.
Jeff Cooper is Step Change’s Founding Partner. Jeff learnt his most valuable lessons in strategic thinking by spending his own money. His entrepreneurial pursuits began back in 2004 when he started his first business, designing exhibition spaces and running events, eventually giving birth to an interactive event concept later adopted by the likes of Big Day Out and other major festival organisers. A decade later, in 2014–2015, startups Jeff was involved in raised over $1m in investment, and Step Change — which he co-founded — became a multimillion-dollar strategy consultancy, serving clients across five continents. He’s a true generalist, with ownership and Board interests in businesses from retail solar to beauty and beyond, at life stages from startup to over $150m revenue annually.