I know you probably read the above headline and thought, what does it even mean? Aren’t referrals essentially just an introduction and aren’t meetings just conversations? I’m going to let you in on a little secret! Yes, all these words above are essentially the same thing. But, I prefer the word introduction over referral and conversation over meeting and here’s why.
Referral VS Introduction
A lot of times we hear the word referral, get excited and think…immediate/easy close! We have expectations right up front that it’s going to be a sale, sometimes before we even actually speak to the person. We might not say those thoughts out loud but, come on I know we think them, and it’s not your fault. There is so much stigma around the word “referral.” We get hyped and then let down when the “referral “was not as simple and immediate as we originally thought. But, I promise you, if you start thinking about referrals as introductions you’re going to see a change in the amount of referrals you bring in and actually close!
So what’s the secret? Simply think of an introduction as an introduction and only that. Don’t let false expectations get the best of you before you even speak with the person. Say thanks for the introduction and take it for what it actually is, an introduction. Another piece to the “secret” is slow down. Don’t go into a meeting with that person all hyped up. Just because they were a referral does not mean they are an easy close or that you are the right fit for each other. It will take time to uncover those pain points and to know if you both are a good match.
Meeting VS Conversation
As I said above, it takes time to uncover the pain points of your “referral” and to find out if you both are the correct fit for each other. The best way to uncover the information you need? Think of your meetings as conversations. A lot of times, when people use the word meeting they feel immediate pressure. If you just think of your meeting with the referral as a conversation, I guarantee, you won’t feel the heat and you won’t make mistakes.
Think of it as a time where you both are getting to know one another. During the conversation you should be uncovering that person’s pain points and finding out pretty quickly if what you have to offer is going to be of a solution. Thinking of a meeting as a conversation is also imperative in building relationships. You want to shape a relationship with this person, even if you uncover that you both are not the right fit for one another, they can always introduce you to someone who might be. Keep the pressure off both individuals involved. Think about your encounters as conversations, not a sales meeting or pitch.