According to the Internet (so it must be true) 63% of couples met through a mutual friend.
It seems that finding love through friends-of-friends is a very common way to find love.
Why is this so effective?
The answer is trust. The person doing the referral knows both parties and will have a reasonable view on whether it's a good idea for these people to hook up. If you know the person is a slime-ball you're probably not going to match them up with someone you like. Trust is inherent in this kind of exchange.
So does the same statistic apply in sales?
Sales referrals are very effective in sales. The same trust model is present. In fact establishing trust is probably the biggest hurdle to winning a sale. So if a mutual acquaintance is prepared to do an introduction, it's a sign that there is trust.
Getting referrals from customers is the same. Asking for the referral after you've closed the deal is not the right time. It's when your customer is happy and you've delivered on your promise.
The best referrals are where your acquaintance or customer does the introduction directly. Getting a name from someone is nowhere near as effective. Think back to dating. If someone arranges a blind date it works better than ringing up without any warning and saying "I've been given your number - fancy going on a date?". The stalker alarm bells will be ringing!
If dating is anything to go by, you could be getting 63% of your sales through referrals!
My job is selling technology. Actually I'm more of a translator. I sell technology to other businesses and that's where things get weird. There is a bewildering array of tech out there and unfortunately many companies think technology sells itself and the value that the technology delivers should be obvious. Wrong. That's where I come in. I said I was a translator. My job is to translate techno babble into value that customers understand. This blog share my adventures with high tech sales. Selling high tech is fun so come join me on my sales journey!