Referral ProgramsHere’s what you might have missed from No More Cold Calling this month.

“The most powerful tool in my sales toolbox is me.” Sound arrogant? Not really.

Think about it. Technology takes you just so far. People buy from us because we’ve built strong relationships with them, because they trust us, because they like us.

This is what I discussed with Andy Paul of Zero-Time Selling when he hosted me on his podcast.

(Click here to listen.)

We discussed the many sources of referrals, how referral programs work, and why asking to meet “anyone who…” won’t get you introductions to the prospects you really want to meet. Andy also asked me about referral introductions on social media.

Other takeaways include:

  • Why digital communication doesn’t give you the color commentary you get with a personal conversation
  • How to get the highest return on your time by doing what’s closest to cash every day
  • How to define value based on the impact you can have on your customer’s unique business
  • Why sales leaders can’t just tell people to go get referrals and expect them to make it rain
  • Why you should put down the gadgets and make time for your family

Listen and learn how to do referral selling right. Or read the transcript if you prefer.

For more on the power of referral programs, check out this month’s blog posts from No More Cold Calling:

How to Stop Sales Reps from Actually Derailing Your Referral Marketing

One of the biggest mistakes salespeople make is letting leads—particularly hot referral leads—fall through the cracks. As Andy Paul puts it, “Sales leads are like lottery tickets. They won’t all be winners, but you don’t know until you engage.” Put another way: Timing matters in sales, but you won’t know when the timing is right if reps don’t get—and stay—in touch. When prospects request information and reps don’t follow up, they miss out on the chance to have great conversations and close deals. Likewise, when reps lose touch with existing customers, they miss out on the chance to get referral leads. (Read “How to Stop Sales Reps from Actually Derailing Your Referral Marketing.”)

4 Secrets to the One-Call Meeting: Your Powerful Referral Program

Some people say it takes seven to 12 touches for sales reps to reach their prospects. Is that how you want your team spending their time? The #1 challenge sales reps face is getting to decision-makers quickly. Seven to 12 touches doesn’t cut it. But when sales organizations put referral programs in place, reps don’t need to jump through hoops to get meetings. Because they have referral introductions from their prospects’ trusted colleagues, they always receive a call back. It’s the one-call referral meeting! (Read “4 Secrets to the One-Call Meeting: Your Powerful Referral Program.”)

No Stupid Smartphone Needed for Effective Sales Techniques

We know we should turn off all electronics at least one hour before going to bed if we want a good night’s sleep. We know we should put that darned phone away when we get home so we can spend time with our families, and that we should unplug when we go on vacation. We’ve heard these cautions for years. Yet, most of us remain plugged in, both night and day. If we’re always looking at screens, we’re missing out on life and undermining our most effective sales techniques. We’re losing the personal connections and relationships that drive sales. (Read “No Stupid Smartphone Needed for Effective Sales Techniques.”)

12 Habits for Sales Leaders to Adopt

What separates great sales leaders from mediocre ones? Here’s a hint: It’s not what they read, do, or say that makes the biggest difference. It’s who they are. This is what I took away from Dr. Travis Bradberry’s fantastic Entrepreneur article, “12 Habits of Exceptional Leaders.” He talks about how being authentic counts, and why generosity and humility really matter. But my favorite is “courage.” Leaders become exceptional when they face adversity and have the courage to do the right thing. (Read “12 Habits for Sales Leaders to Adopt.”)

Test Your Referral Savvy

I’m conducting a study on referrals, and I need your help. Please take my 14-question Referral I.Q. Quiz. The questions are mostly “Yes/No,” and it should take less than four minutes to complete. Rest assured, it’s completely anonymous, with no forms to fill out.

Once you’ve finished, you’ll be bounced over to a results page, where you can see the aggregated answers from everyone who has participated.

Take the Referral I.Q. Quiz now.

My goal is to get a 1,000-person sample, so please invite your network to take the quiz as well. Participation is anonymous, and I promise you won’t be added to any lists. Thanks in advance for your support!