3.5 minute read
Referrals can be an excellent source of business for you. For smaller operations, a business can thrive on a minimal advertising budget coupled with a strong stream of incoming referrals.
People I know sending business my way, sounds great, but how do I get that to happen? As some of you may know, my husband & I moved to Waco, TX from the DFW area to open a new Texas Tires location this year. Texas Tires of Waco opened its doors spring of 2017, & we made the move at the beginning of the summer (first day of Ramadan, actually!)
I had began my solo practice the past November, & was just beginning to enjoy a full workload & was picking up speed. My entire personal & professional network was there. Moving to Waco felt like starting over. But it forced me to get out there & cultivate my own network of colleagues (many of them friends!) & build my brand in a new town.
Not all referrals materialize. Sometimes it ends with the first conversation; not everybody is in need of my services or knows of anybody with an immediate need for my services right now. But I make myself available as a resource to them, answering questions & shedding light on legal issues when I can. I’m confident that when the time comes, they will look to me as a trusted advisor for legal matters. You can do the same in your industry, too. Whether it’s insurance, a cleaning service, website development, or a law firm, your business can benefit from implementing the steps below:
1. Engage in community outreach
Many people cringe at the thought of “networking” and understandably so. Networking can be daunting; those of us that are introverted may be inclined to avoid situations that require much social interaction. But overcoming this can open many doors. Stop thinking of networking as one time occurrences; in meeting people that do business in your community, you are engaging in community outreach. Build relationships with those around you & get to know them for who they are. After all, you are so much more than your job, or what you sell for a living. Get to know the people behind the business card. This is how real, lasting relationships are created.
Search online for events (try MeetUp or Eventbrite) related to your area, or business networking in general.
2. Build a solid network
Have a network of professionals you can call on or refer to. Create a list of contacts: plumber, banker, real estate agent, insurance broker, etc. Regularly refer to them if you are able. Surely they will return the favor with time.
3. Follow up, follow up, follow up!
Don’t meet a person & not follow up with an email. Be sure to reach out & make that second impression. Many of us meet tons of new people a week, especially in larger cities, & it can be difficult to keep track. Ensure that you aren’t forgotten.
4. Invite your network to your receive newsletter or follow your social media platforms
Make sure your new contacts are kept in the loop! Share helpful resources, information, & blog posts regularly. Be sure that your network is able to clearly understand the nature of your work through your posts. This will help them to keep you at top of mind when the need for your service arises within their respective networks.
Relationships require nurturing; and that goes for both those personal & professional in nature. Sit down for coffee or tea every once in a while. Talk about things other than business over lunch. We’re more than our work or job title. People like doing business with people. Connect with those around you, and the business will follow.
To the success of your business,
Keep up with Yasmine on social media! @startuplawyerlady
This blog does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice or if you would like to schedule a call with our office in order to best protect yourself & your business, you can reach Yasmine directly at (512) 925-7882 or book a meeting by clicking here.
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