There are plenty of different approaches to selling. The old sales model involved handing out your business card to every person you see, wearing your company name tag and placing company signs on your car.
Have you noticed that this approach doesn’t work as well anymore?
Today, the internet is the go-to source for information. But finding resources through a Google search is missing an important piece: trust.
The one thing that will never change is the power of personal trust, and trust comes from recommendations from others.
So, what if you flipped your sales approach and instead of “selling” to people, you asked them one of the most powerful questions you can ask to get a response?
“May I ask your opinion?”
When you ask a person for their opinion, you acknowledge their value as a resource, convey that their opinion has value, and on a subtle level, make them feel important.
One of the most successful initiatives to get buy-in from your SOI is to build a guide for referrals. When you collect the top-rated services from your SOI, everyone wins, and you become their trusted resource.
Here’s an easy way to reach out and “prospect” to build your guide for referrals.
1. Make it a point to contact people who know, like and trust you and ask them to share their opinions on the best service providers they currently use, rating them on a scale of 1 – 10 (1 = worst, 10 = best). Explain that you’re compiling a resource guide of trusted services rated by your own sphere of influence to provide to new buyers coming into the area as well as others in your database.
2. After compiling the list of service providers rated by your group, you can opt to convert the report to a PDF for electronic mailing or print the booklet with a graphic of your team and town on the front cover. Put your contact information on the back for a less salesy look.
3. Minimize your costs by selling ads to the service providers who can place a coupon in the guide. This is a terrific opportunity for the provider to enjoy direct marketing, and for you to cut costs.
4. Consider making this an annual guide with yearly updates. It’s a win-win, as service providers get new business, and you have a great value-add to give prospects.
Terri Murphy is a communication engagement specialist, author, consultant and master coach with Workman Success Systems. She is the author of five books, a TED Talk speaker and the founder of the Women’s Wisdom Network on Facebook. For more information, visit TerriMurphy.com or email Terri@TerriMurphy.com.