Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Upgrade your referrals

Dear Friends,
I received this email from a reader that I would like to share with you:

Dear Mr. Stanton,

I've been licensed Realtor for about 5 years.

I get referred quite often by clients and friends.

What I don't understand is why my conversion of referred prospects is so low?

I call immediately after getting the lead and follow-up on a regular basis until I get through, but I don't feel I get as many appointments as I should considering they are referrals.

What can I do to increase my percentage of appointments of referred clients?
Best Regards,


Dear TK,

Upgrade your referrals before you call them.

First lets look at the reasons people may refer you.

Some people want to be a hero and a referral can be a way to enhance their status.

Others want you to experience the better service they experienced possibly as a way to reaffirm their decision.

They most probably like you, trust you and genuinely want to help you.

Letting others know how pleased we are with our decisions, reaffirming our choices, telling others by way of a referral is only natural.

Here's my point...the act of referral is not always about the needs of the person being referred.

Because we all have given referrals, received referrals and have been the prospect of referrals we know this to be true.

Upgrading your referrals is a process.

We'll look at the two most important parts of this simple process today.

  1. Know more about the person you're calling.
  2. Ask the referrer to call the referral first.

Here's what normally happens:
You get a name and number and permission to call and then say "Thanks for the referral, I'll call them right away."

What a waste.

The first way to upgrade your referral is to know more about the person you're calling.

Questions you may want to consider asking first:

  • How do you know this person?
  • What is your connection with (name)?
  • What do you admire most about (name)?
  • Does (name) have any special interests?
  • What are some challenges (name) is facing right now?
  • Why did you think of (name) first?
  • Do you know where (name) is in the process?
  • Why do you think we would be a good match?
  • Does (name) know you’re referring him/her to me?
  • How do you think (name) will respond to your giving me his/her name?
  • Is there anything else about (name) that would be helpful for us to know?

If you're referred to help solve a problem, a serious problem, ask this question.
"How do you think he or she will react and feel about discussing their problems? Can I bring them up or should I be less direct?”

Remember, referral selling is about building and protecting relationships.

When given a referral there if there isn't time or you are not in the appropriate situation to ask all these questions, just call back the next day and ask before you call the referral.

You are teaching people how important relationships are by your very behavior.

The second part of upgrading your referrals, after you' ve asked these questions, is to ask the referral source to call first.

It might sound like this.

"Mike thanks for helping me meet Anthony. I was wondering, maybe he would appreciate hearing from you first, just to know that you're not sending some salesperson to attack him. Would that be Okay?" (pause)
“I don't want this to be a hassle for you, so if you get his voice mail a quick message about why you think it would be good for both of us to meet would be just fine."


"Mike thanks for trusting me to help your friend. How can we let him know how I can help him also?” (pause)
“Could we give him a call now to let him know that I will be contacting him tomorrow and why you think it would be good for both of us to meet?"

That's it.

Upgrading a referral is more about a genuine and sincere desire to better understand who you might be talking to before you pick up the phone.

With this understanding, your words, tone, style, temperament and manner are transferred to the referral to create a more comfortable conversation, leading to a desire to meet.

Thanks for spending 3 minutes with me.....
the best is yet to be!

On Your Team
Jeffrey Stanton ITI, CLC, CNE, CSSN, WOW
Your Trusted Advisor For Life

One of the fastest ways to build a successful referral based business is by training. Now, with me, I like to invest significant time immersing myself in training, while some people prefer to take it in bite-size chunks. Whatever your preference is, now is the best time to contact me.

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