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Not All Introductions Are Created Equal

by Bill Cates
Not All Introductions Are Created Equal

Word of mouth is great, but most businesses can’t count on that for the growth they desire. And referrals are worthless! You heard me right. Referrals are worthless… unless you turn them into introductions. If you never get connected to the new prospect, it’s unlikely they’ll return your call or respond to your email.


This is where the client acquisition process often breaks down for many – actually getting connected to their new prospect.


If I had to narrow it down to two main things you want to do to create a strong introduction, they would be:

  1. Make it a collaborative process with your referral source. Don’t just leave it up to them to figure out the best way to introduce you.
  2. Nail down a few specifics. It’s the old “Who will do what by when?”

Collaborative Process

Laura, I appreciate your willingness to introduce me to your sister and brother-in-law. Let’s see if we can come up with the best way to do this – so all three of you feel comfortable and we can at least pique Mike and Sandy’s interest in meeting with me.


Laura, I suspect Mike and Sandy would prefer to hear from you before they hear from me. Don’t you think? (I suppose they would). Let’s see if we can craft an approach that feels comfortable for you and at least piques their interest in hearing from me.

Sometimes your referral source knows exactly what they think will work best. Sometimes they have no clue. You can have your favorite way, but be flexible to what feels comfortable to them, without losing the chance to reach out to the prospect at the right time.


Get Specific

The more you “formalize” introductions, the more your referral source will get invested in making this work – especially if they really value your work and see that you’re just trying to bring your value to others.

Make sure these questions are answered as you craft introductions with your referral source:

  1. What will the source say to the prospect(s) to pique their interest and gain a commitment to at least taking your call – if not meeting with you?
  2. What will be the method of introduction? In person? Email? Text? Invitation to one of your events?
  3. When will this introduction take place?
  4. When will you follow up with the referral source to confirm the introduction has taken place (unless, of course, you were cc’d on an email introduction)?

What are you doing to turn referrals into introductions? What questions do you have? Write them in the comments box below and I’ll get back to you. Let’s start a conversation! Or… you may contact me right away at

Referral Coach