So, you know that feeling when someone passes you a referral or brings you a new opportunity?
You know when they do it without you ever asking? That is a golden experience and this week we're going deep into how we can all generate a little more gold in our lives with Stacey B Randall, author of 'Generate Referrals without Asking' .
Stacey Brown Randall is the multiple award-winning author of Generating Business Referrals Without Asking, host of the Roadmap to Grow Your Business podcast and national speaker.
She has had the privilege of helping well-known corporations and franchises but her focus is on small business owners and solopreneurs in the real estate, financial, and professional services industries.
Stacey has been featured in national publications like Entrepreneur magazine, Investor Business Daily, Forbes, CEO World, Fox News and more.
She received her Master’s in Organizational Communication and is married with three kids.
Stacey's Website : www.staceybrownrandall.com
Please note : This is an automatically generated transcription. There are typos and the system may pick words or whole phrases up incorrectly.
Welcome to Amplify the Personal Brand Entrepreneur Show today. On the show, Bob is speaking with Stacey Brown Randall. But in this case, the house business question is just an easy way, one to see what happens. And in that moment it's your ability to plant what we call engagement referral seeds, and the ability to say the correct answer. I call it the correct answer for house business is something better instead of just saying, yeah, things are great. What if you said instead? Things are great. Thank you so much for asking, Bob.
I appreciate it. Actually, you know what? I just brought on two new clients yesterday and both of them were referred to me one by another client and another by a centre of influence somebody in my network. It is amazing to get referrals because it just reminds me of the great work I'm doing.
Hi there and welcome back to Amplify The Personal Brand Entrepreneurship. My name is Bob Gentle, and every week I'm joined by incredible people who share what makes their business work. If you're new to the show, take a second right now to subscribe and your player whichever one you use. But if you're listening on Apple podcast, make sure you cheque a new follow up in the top right hand corner of the app. That way Apple will queue me up every time I post new episodes. And that way we both win.
So before I jump into introducing this week's guest, just a quick reminder that after nearly 200 of these interviews, I've learned a thing or two about what makes business work online. It turns out success does leave clues, and I want to offer you the map. So jump over to my website and grab your copy of the Personal Brand Business Roadmap. Everything you need to start, scale or just fix your expert business. It's yours for free as a gift from me. So you know that feeling when someone passes you a referral and brings you a new opportunity, you know, when they do it without asking.
That is a golden experience. And this week we're going deep into how we can all generate a little bit more gold in our lives with Stacey Brown Randall, author of Generate Referrals Without Asking and host of The Roadmap to Grow Your Business podcast. Stacey, welcome to the show.
Thank you, Bob, so much for having me. I'm excited to be here.
I am very excited to have you here because referrals are, frankly, one of my favourite things in the whole world. My business has been built on referrals. Referrals have kept my family fed and my kids sent to school. So referrals, they mean a lot to me. And I think one of the things that really intrigued me with your book was how to Generate Referrals without asking most people if they're honest when they think of referrals and you'll have heard this all the time, they'll probably think about slightly seedy feeling networking groups or trying to hustle their contacts.
What I really like about your book, is it's really looking at what can we do to become super hyper referral? And we're going to go into that. There's probably one myth I'd like to dispel right at the beginning. And you're going to have a perspective on this as well. But a lot of people think that particularly in the online space, all business comes to us through Facebook ads or through content marketing or through even direct messaging, cold prospects and things like that. But the truth is, I've asked most of my podcast guests of those three ways.
Well, there's a fourth, the fourth being referral. Of those four ways, how does your biggest opportunity come to you? And they almost exclusively tell me, you know what I do all those online things and they work. But the thing that always brings the biggest opportunities is referrals is recommendations. So that's why we're going to go into that today. So, Stacey, I've talked a lot. Why don't we start just by you telling us a little bit about who you are, where you are, what you do. And obviously your book, who's?
Stacey Brown Randall, thank you.
So I help small business owners and sole pure Urs tackle the age old question of can I get referrals without the Icky asking piece? And my answer is always a resounding. Heck, yes, it's not how it's typically taught. Typically, we are taught. If we want referrals, we've got to ask for them, we've got to compensate for them. We've got to be overly promotional or gimmicky, or we've got a network. I know a tonne of people so that we're always keeping in touch with folks. Or we just have to hope that referrals will happen.
And I did not like any of those options and wanted to create a different way to generate referrals. And really, I did it to make my own business successful. And when I created my strategy to grow my business off of these referrals, I was receiving that I wasn't asking for or doing any of the other Icky things we don't want to do. My clients started saying, okay, teach us that now. And the reason for really trying to figure out, how can I grow my business based on referrals, but do it in a way that nobody else is teaching because I don't want to do it in a way that everybody else is teaching it.
It was really because of survival. I had had a business fail. I had an HR consulting firm, and I had that business fail after almost five years. It was just past the four year Mark. It didn't make it quite to the five year Mark when that HR consulting firm failed. And I had big name clients like KPMG Ally Bank, like some large name clients, not only in the United States but around the world as well. And you would have thought that business was doing great. But it had a secret.
And the secret was that I was constantly on the treadmill of business development. And when I stepped back and I was like, there's got to be an easier way to grow because I'm going to service the work that I do as well. And when I had an HR consulting firm, it wasn't at all online the way my business is now. But I was servicing the work like most business owners, small business owners do, you're selling it. And then you're also doing the work and you put your head down and you do the work, and then you look up.
When the work is done, you're like, oh, my gosh, there's no more business. Now I'm back out on the hustle trying to get the next client. And when that business failed and I found myself back in corporate America, I was like, I have to do it differently. First of all, I'm an entrepreneur at heart. I got to get back out there. But I cannot have another business failure. And so when I started my second business, which happened to be a productivity and business coaching Practise, I've gotten certified as a coach.
While I was in corporate America, I decided that I was going to build that business in a different way. And at that point when I started my second business, I now had more children. And so the idea of networking every night was never going to be possible. As your kids get older, you just become an Uber driver and taking them everywhere. And so to all of their activities. And so I needed a way that I could grow my business that wasn't reliant on the tried and true because they do work methodologies that weren't going to fit in my life.
And so for me, I was like, Why am I not getting referrals? I would do really great work. My clients love me. And then I realised, Well, all the old strategies that are taught are all that's out there. And if you don't want to do those like asking and compensating, there's nothing else for you. There's no other way to teach you to generate referrals in a way that's more authentic. So I created it for myself to make my coaching Practise successful. I got 112 referrals in my first year as a coach, and I have every year since gotten over 100 referrals.
And that was when my clients started saying, okay, thanks for being our productivity and business coach, but we want to learn your referrals without asking strategy. So then I was forced to realise, oh, okay, it's a strategy, and there are steps to it, as I was reverse engineering it to be able to teach it. That's when I realised, oh, there's a process here that I follow. And of course, this is now almost ten years of this and we continue to refine it. But it has been a well old machine for many many years now teaching other business owners that it is possible to generate referrals without asking.
So people listening to this will be jumping up and down and they're going to slap me if at this point I don't ask you to share a little bit about what that process is because that's my job is to ask those questions. And I know that your business is teaching people this. But for somebody who really just wants a 10,000 foot view of the process, what does that look like?
Yeah, absolutely. I think it's a great question, and I think it's one we have to tackle. I think it would be weird if you didn't ask because I'm like, how can anyone know they want to go deeper if they don't first understand what the heck it looks like? Absolutely. So I always kind of explain it to folks is that there are five basic steps to being able to generate referrals in a way where you're not asking, you're not compensating, you're not being gimmicky. You're not networking. But this strategy.
I always like to say this at the very beginning. The strategy is based on kind of like two disclaimers. Number one, I'm going to make the assumption, as I teach you these five steps that you're already referral, which means you've received some referrals. I'm not saying you've received dozens and dozens every year, every year over. But you do receive some referrals from time to time, which means you've built a business and how you take care of your clients and a client experience that makes you worthy of those referrals, because if you do great work, you totally deserve referrals.
You're just not owed them. And that's where we have to be willing to look at things differently to be able to receive them. And so my first thing is I'm assuming, as I teach you, these five steps that you are referable if you're not referring. Well, we have another programme that we talked about how to have that sticky client experience. So you can be referrable. That's another conversation for another day. But I'm going to make the assumption you are referring. You're not perfect. Nobody needs to be.
But you have received a handful of referrals over time so that, you know, okay. This is something I've received in the past, and I have the potential to receive more. I am referable.
Stacey, I am super referrable.
Good to know, right. And you know, it's interesting when people always say that to me. I have to say this, Bob, my response back always is prove it and that's we're going to get into that. When I talk about the very first step of this process. Most people don't like being told to prove it, but I've got a point there. But let me just say the second thing that's kind of like a Disclaimer is this is going to sound amazing if you've ever listened to the other ways of generating referrals like having to ask who to ask, when to ask, how often to ask, taking advantage of reciprocity.
If you've ever been taught any of those ways in the referral programmes and the compensation and all those different things, if you've ever been taught how to generate referrals in what I call the old school ways, this is going to sound amazing, but make no mistake, this is still work. And so just as the old ways, maybe Icky kind of work my way is definitely a better way. But there's still a process you have to follow. There's still consistency you have to bring to the table.
There's an execution piece that has to happen once you build it and that's the piece I always want people to know up front. One, you got to be referral because I'm not talking about that. I'm diving into you are referring to the five steps, and two, this is still work. There is no easy button. I do not sell a silver bullet, and I think a lot of people because it sounds so good referrals without asking. They actually just think if they just, like, show up, then they're going to happen.
I'm like, no, this isn't magic. There's still work to do. So you mentioned that you're really referral, and my guess is you totally can prove it. But the very first step of my process where I ask people to prove it when they're like, oh, my favourite is people are like, I'm 100% referral based, and I'm always like, prove it. And the way I have people prove it is with our first step. And that is identifying who are your referral sources, who are your existing referral sources, those who have referred you in the last three or four years.
So when someone's in my growth by referrals programme, we actually ask them to pull three to four years worth of data in their business. And basically what they're pulling is they're pulling their clients, their new clients that they've received over the last four years. So they'll pull their new clients in 20, 21, 20, 20, 20, 19 and 2018, they don't really need to go back further than four years. That's not really necessary, because if somebody has referred you in the last four years and they referred to ten years ago, well, obviously we're going to capture them because they're in the last four years.
But someone who referred you eight years ago and has never referred you since. It's probably not a viable option, but you're going to look at who are your clients over the last four years, your new clients, you brought on board over the last four years, and where did they come from? You're going to identify the source. So for some of those clients, it may be obvious that they were referred to you. And I want you to capture the fact that they were referred to you and then the name of the person who referred them to you.
Of course. That's why we capture what's called the referral source. That's the person, the human that referred you. But you're going to have other things in there, too, right. Maybe you met them at a networking event. Maybe they came through a Facebook ad, maybe they saw you speak on stage. Maybe they heard you on a podcast. Like, there may be other ways that people come to you, but what we're looking for are the clients that were referred to you and the names of those referral sources.
So we kind of create this list of our clients over the last four years and where they came from, and then we just kind of removed from the list anybody who wasn't referred, and then what we're left with is our identification of who our existing referral sources are, because that is our number one starting point.
That makes perfect sense. I think that's a really useful exercise for anybody. I think you're going to probably see one of two things. Either there's not much referral there or there's way more than you were expecting.
Yes. And there's a third thing you'll see, too. So you hit the nail on the head. You're definitely going to be like, Whoa, I need more. I don't have enough people referring me. I didn't get as many referrals as I thought or two. You're going to be like, how did I miss this? Like, I'm getting so many referrals, and I don't do anything to take care of these humans. There may be more referrals I'm missing out on that. They could be giving me, but I'm not taking care of them in the right way and building the right relationship.
And the third thing is, you may look at that list and be like, wait a minute. Where's Bob? Because Bob and I have all these conversations. We go grab beers and we have all these Zoom meetings, and we're talking all the time over Facebook Messenger, and we talk business all the time. And I could have sworn he was telling me all these times that he was connecting me with people. But yet nothing is revealed that he has. Now here's the thing to think about this. This is based on your clients, the people who said yes to working with you.
There is another whole group of people that may have been referred to you that isn't captured in this process. So we go one step deeper. I tell people when they're just kind of doing this without going through my programme to learn how to do it. Stick to what's easy. So you'll get through it. But we have our students go through one more step where they actually pull as much data as they have on their prospects. So the people who just didn't become a client, and so with the prospects that you have, what we want you to do is we want you to pull them just like your clients, and you may not have four years worth of data.
It really depends on your CRM at this point, your client relationship management tool. But wherever you're capturing that data, if you had your prospects and then you're also going to do the same thing, you're going to capture them and then where they came from and any of those prospects that were referred to you that you didn't close into a client. We still want those list of referral sources to make it to your master list of referral sources. And more than likely, they'll be overlap. You'll see some people who are on the client referral source list that also show up on the prospect referral source list only because you don't always close everybody that's referred to you.
That's not normal, right? I mean, that's not going to always happen.
So this is making perfect sense so far. Good.
Okay, so the next step will completely feel out of place. But when I connect it to step three and step four, you'll be like, oh, okay, that makes sense. Step three is. And I kind of always feel like somebody's mother when I start talking about step number two. And that is your ability to think what people don't recognise. And I hear it all the time because I'm out there as somebody who's teaching referrals, I will get LinkedIn messages or a lot of people come up when I used to be in person doing speaking engagements or send me direct messages in the Zoom chats when I'm doing virtual presentations.
But I have people come up to me and they're like, what is wrong with people that they can't say thank you when I refer them? Like I once had this financial adviser came up to me and he was like, what is wrong with all the CPAs in the world that cannot seem to say thank you when you send a client to them, I'm like, okay, well, first of all, it's not just one industry. It actually is kind of like an epidemic of us not saying thank you in the way we were taught to in what I call the proper way.
And that's a handwritten thank you note. Your ability to thank somebody in the moment of receiving a referral is really important for two reasons. Number one, it tells them that they are valuable and they are worthy of your time because it takes zero time to send a text or an email, and it takes more time to send a handwritten thank you note, and it's going to be remembered longer because typically thank you notes hang around longer, which is really important, and it answers the question, why should I send you another referral if you can't thank me for the one I just sent you.
So with a thank you note, part of your process, you receive a referral within 24 to 48 hours quicker. If you're faster than that, pull out a note card and write a thank you note and thank them for who they referred to you. It's quite simple, but it is amazing to me how many people are, like, I want to get more referrals, and I'm like, but you're not even thanking people for the ones they've sent you. And we actually have a process that I teach where we kind of walk through, like, hey, have you all these referrals that you've received in this step one, you just did and you pulled all this down.
You've got all these referral sources or you have, like, five. You don't have that many, whatever it is, I'm like, how many of them received a handwritten thank you card. And they're like, and a lot of people will say, I don't know. And if I'm being honest, there will be like, none. They got emails, they get text messages, right? I'm like, okay, well, you have to learn how to think them moving forward, because that's going to factor into how we ultimately take care of them. And let me pause for just a second before I tell you step three and step four, because they go together like meat and potatoes.
But let me get to tell you with step three and step four when you're thinking about them, and we're coming off of this ability to think referrals come from relationships, that's where they come from. They come from me having a relationship with you and trusting you that A, you can solve the problem. And B, you'll take good care of the person I'm sending to you. So when I refer you, it's because I have a relationship with you on some level, a trusting relationship with you. I don't have to have a wee grab a beer every week relationship with you, but I have to trust that you're the person who can solve this person's problem, because a referral isn't about you.
A referral is about me as a referral source, helping someone that I know who has a problem and how I'm going to help them is by connecting them with you so that you can solve their problem. You were just the solution provider. So everything we do comes from this place of taking care of our referral source, first identifying them by name, then making sure when they refer us. We're always thanking them, that we're always letting them know how much we appreciate the referrals that they send us.
And then when we move on to step three and step four, it's building on that idea that everything is based on the relationship you have with your referral sources. And it doesn't mean proximity, right? I mean, I have an online programme. We have students in ten different countries all around the world, and I don't even never even met face to face a majority of the people who refer people to me, but I still have a relationship with them. And that's an important thing to note when we're thinking about step two writing, thank you notes, we're building relationships.
Before we talk about step three and step four.
I think that's really important that we often mistakenly identify a relationship as having to be with someone we've met. It really is about the space that you occupy in someone else's mind. That's it. And I'm sitting here thinking there is somebody who has recently started prolifically referring to me, and I'm feeling properly schooled right now because I haven't taken these basic actions to let him know. Obviously, I've said, thanks, but it goes right back to show me saying thanks. There's no depth in that gesture. There's nothing that's going to make me stand out from anybody else that could just say thanks.
And I know as somebody that does refer from time to time, I want to know wherever that referral is going, that it's treasured because referrals are currency. I can spend them anywhere, and I'd like to spend them where I know they're going to have the biggest impact and have the greatest significance. So making that clear statement to say properly. By the way, I'm demarcating a space for a proper thank you. That would be a powerful thing. And you're right. It actually very rarely happens.
It does. And it's not because we're not ill intentioned. We're not trying to be like, yeah, I don't have to. Thank you. We don't ever come at it from that place. We just forget that at the very intimate level, first level of a human relationship is that ability to always think and we just forget in our busyness of life that actually, you know what? I've got to stop and pause. And it may only take you 62 seconds to write that card and walk it to the mailbox.
But at the end of the day, it's going to have the greatest impact on the people who are taking care of your business in the best way possible by putting their reputation on the line to send people to you.
Yeah. So me and potatoes, step three and four.
Yes. Okay. So I always tell folks, when you think about step three and step four, you can't have one without the other. So I always say step three feels like, okay, this is the meat and potatoes. This is the step that is I mean, lots of people will tell you step one feels like the most amount of work, but you do it because it just depends on how you keep up with your data and how fast or how slow that process works for you. But once you do step one, once, you never have to do it again.
Step three, though, would be the meat and potatoes piece of this is because this is the step that I want you to build as a process that runs within your business consistently, year after year after year. I want you to build a plan that's going to be like a wash rinse repeat type model, because I want you to make the commitment to take care of your referral sources so that they can help you take care of your business. And step four is kind of like the secret sauce that makes that meat and potatoes actually taste good.
I always find it hilarious when I use it. That cooking analogy because I don't Cook. Luckily, I married somebody who cooks very well, and it's always funny for me. He's like, Why do you use that? You don't even Cook yourself. I'm like because it makes sense, right? Everybody can visualise it in their mind's eye. Step three, meet and potato. The main part that we have to focus on is how we're going to consistently build a relationship and strengthen and deepen and continue a relationship with our referral sources.
We've identified them. We are now committed to thanking them every time they refer us. But there will be no explosion of referrals or river of referrals that'll open up consistently. And I don't just mean in a period of time, but year after year, if we're not consistently taking care of people so you can't write one thank you note and just think that means you're going to get ten more referrals from that person. It certainly is going to help, but it's certainly a baseline. But you don't explode referrals.
You don't reach that referral explosion just because you wrote a single thank you note. We have to have a plan in place of where we're taking care of our referral sources and the way that I describe a referral plan. It is similar to your marketing plan and your prospecting plan in terms of it's, a plan you build, and then you're going to execute on it on a yearly basis. But it's different from marketing and sales because everything about it is different. All we know is who our referral sources are.
We don't know who the prospects are. So our expectation of what we're going to do is really based on just taking care of those referral sources. And it's a planned approach where we can be memorable and meaningful and stay top of mind with our existing referral sources. And when I say memorable and meaningful, I don't mean your newsletter. That's part of your marketing plan, right? You have a newsletter you send out every month. Great. It's not part of your referral plan, and the other piece of that is it's not you sending out promotional items with your logo on them.
That's a gift for you. It's not a gift for your referral source. It also doesn't have to be gifts. I think people kind of get stuck in this mindset of, oh, I've got to thank them and reward them, so to speak. And I've got to shower them with gifts because they're sending me referrals. I have lots of people that I work with that never send a gift because it's not in their budget or it's not how they want to kind of make sure they're taking care of their relationship.
So when we say memorable and meaningful and we stay top of mind if you're doing it right, you're going to fall somewhere between four and eight touch points. That's what we call it. Just think of them as outreaches in a year. And usually, though, in your first and second year, you're going to probably be closer to six to eight touch points or outreaches to your referral sources. But we're doing this knowing who all of our referral sources are. So it's not individual six to eight touch points, and I have 20 referral sources, and I've got to do eight times 20 in a year for individual people, it's the same six to eight touch points for all 20 of your referral sources, because how you build it is based on who they are.
And this is always the point where people are like, great. Just tell me what my touch points are, and I'm like what your touch points are going to be. Well, that's a great question. It's not the right first question. What your touch points will ultimately end up being is going to be based on who your referral sources are. So let me give you an example. When I was a productivity and business coach, that was my second business that I started as I was trying to build that Practise, and I was trying to get those 112 referrals.
In my first year, I started paying attention to who was referring me. I did the same step one as everybody else identified who were my referral sources. And really, for me, I was throwing spaghetti on the wall and I was trying anything and everything to see what would work that would keep me in a place of where I could be authentic. And then I started noticing that patterns emerge as they always do. And that's kind of how we build our processes. And then from those patterns, I started paying attention to the who.
And I realised that more than 80% of the people who referred me were not only business owners themselves, they were also parents. And so when I thought about my six to eight touch points in a year, rather, I decided to do six, seven or eight. When I was thinking about what those would look like, it made perfect sense knowing who my people were to recognise Mother's Day and Father's Day, who expects to hear from the business coach they refer to on Mother's Day or Father's Day?
It's just something you wouldn't expect. It's something we teach in the programme called the Off Guard Holiday. But you don't always do all the holidays. You can't do every holiday. That's weird, and you shouldn't only do holidays, and you shouldn't only send gifts like variety is the spice of life when it comes to these referral plans that we build. But I recognise Mother's Day and Father's Day because of who my people are. I have a home stager that is in my programme. And when I already knew this, because I have a number of those folks that happen to be in my programme.
We have a variety of industries that are in the programme. But I use this as an example because it's very specific. I already know that with a home stager, they're number one referral source of real estate agents.
And as they were going through all of their referrals, they realised that as well, and they probably already knew it. And I was like, So what is a real estate agent need from you? That's the question we ask, what do they need from you to feel taken care of by you? And it could look different if CPAs were all your referral sources or business coaches, what we do for them looks different. But the way that I teach it and the framework of how I teach it allows you to come up with six, seven or eight, whatever your number is your first year, to be able to do those things for the same group of people and only do it six, seven or eight times a year versus feeling like you're doing it 20 times seven.
And so that's really important. But what you do to take care of these people in this way that I teach it with your memorable and meaningful top of mind touch points that you're going to do throughout the year, six to eight times. It doesn't actually mean anything other than feel good without step four, which is the secret sauce that makes the meat and potatoes taste good. And that's the language that you use. And we use a special specific language called referral seeds. And the way that I teach it to my students always tell me this is like the secret sauce.
This is the piece that you need to understand that's going to make everything else you're doing work. But that's how we direct how our referral sources think about us. If I can impact how you feel about me, I'm taking care of you, and I'm doing things to acknowledge that I appreciate you. Then I have the ability to direct how you think about me in a very, very honest, authentic way by just planting referral seeds. And when we have a plan in place, then we have the right language there as well.
It gives us a fully functioning process that we can operate on in our business.
So can you give an example of what one of these referral seeds might look like?
So the easiest one that I always tell folks, and it's actually one that if people are listening to this and then they're like, I want to learn a little bit more. I also talk about this in my book, Generating Business Referrals without asking. I think it's chapter ten. If I remember correctly, I should probably know that. But we do talk about referral feeds, and it is a big, proprietary part of what I teach people of what these touch points should look like and how we build them and then the language that we use.
But there's one seed that I do teach that I think anybody can use, and I want you to be able to take advantage of it when you're done listening to this episode. And that is your ability. And it's not specific to referral sources, because I don't know if the people listening have referral sources. I'm assuming you do, but I don't know that for a fact. So the one I always like to teach is your ability to answer the number one question that is asked in all networking opportunities or networking events and social gatherings.
And that's the very first question people ask you when they approach you, which is How's it going? How's business? Right. It's the number one question asked almost in start of all conversations. Unless you're super tight with that person and you start off where you picked up your last conversation. And most people say, you'd probably know this. Bob, what do most people say when people say, hey, How's business?
Most people will say, yes, business is great.
Exactly. And it's not a bad answer, just not a great answer, a better answer to plan a referral seat in that moment. And here's the thing. We're not planting it on an existing referral source, so we don't really know where to go, but we certainly know if we don't try, we don't know if we have the potential to maybe nurture this person into a referral source because that's the other process you have to learn is, hey, how do I take people who aren't referring me and turn them into referral sources?
That's another strategy that we teach. But in this case, the house business question is just an easy one to see what happens. And in that moment, it's your ability to plant what we call engagement, referral seeds and the ability to say the correct answer. I call it the correct answer for house business. It's something better instead of just saying, yeah, things are great. What if you said instead? Things are great. Thank you so much for asking, Bob. I appreciate it. Actually, you know what? I just brought on two new clients yesterday and both of them were referred to me one by another client and another by a centre of influence, somebody in my network.
It is amazing to get referrals because it just reminds me of the great work I'm doing.
What I love about that is, again, sending this signal that referrals aren't taken for granted that your business isn't sort of queuing out the door with people. And the referrals don't matter. That referral if it grows in the mind of the other person and they do refer you, they know that it's going to land as a point of impact. That's a powerful thing.
It is. And it's also exactly. It's like letting them know it's planning that referral fee now, here's the thing you're having this conversation at the neighbourhood barbecue, right. Or at the local Chamber of commerce or whatever your local networking group is. It may fall on concrete and then blow off into the wind, never to do what we want it to do. But it may also fall on fertile soil. This is one that anybody can use, whether they're following my process or not with your existing referral sources.
This is one to use in a networking opportunity or conversation opportunities that anyone can use because you never know what will happen. But it's important to kind of use that opportunity. Now, do you say that same answer to that same person every time you run into them every other month at that same networking event? No. I would prefer you use a variety, right. But it does give you language to use in those moments of answering the house business question. And the other thing to keep in mind is we know it may go somewhere or it may not, but it certainly presents the position of you being remembered from a referral perspective, which in this case using an engagement seed.
Right. We don't expect all of them to turn. We kind of have a low expectation of what will actually come from that without future nurturing. But it does give us a tool that we can use in the moment that everyone's capable of using.
And if you're planting enough of those seeds, four to eight every year with someone, something's going to grow, that's almost inevitable.
Yes. Well, that's going to happen. Those four to eight are going to happen with your existing referral sources. So those four to eight touch points that you're doing with the referral fees language. It's happening to folks who've already referred you, which is really where we get the snowball effect that continues. But in this situation, you may only plant that one seed with that person. Then you may not run into them for another six months. You can determine that they should be referring you. So you want to follow a process to cultivate.
But in some cases, yes, you can plant that one seed and then somebody a week later, remember the conversation and have opportunity to refer you. And so they do it. And here's the big misnomer about referrals. Number one, they're not about you. They're about somebody else helping someone who has a problem, and they're just referring someone to you. And number two, what it takes for a referral to actually happen is desire and opportunity. You control desire. You control how well you plant those referral seeds and those one off networking opportunities or how well you take care of your existing your current referral sources to get more referrals from them, you control the desire for you to be the one they want to refer.
But opportunity is all on them. So identifying the right people is really important. And in a networking opportunity, you don't know, you're kind of just flying blind. You're having conversations with people. You're planning this house business engagement, referral feed, and you're just going to see where it goes and where it takes you. But truly, if you want to make sure that you are having yourself in a position to have people refer you because they have opportunity that comes down to identifying who's already referred you and or who should be referring you.
And those are two different tactics that we actually take and processes that we work, how we take care of our existing referral sources, four to eight touch points. And how do we turn our clients and contacts into referral sources? This engagement see, do you answer How's business can help you in that process? But I just really want people to understand that it may fall more on concrete than it does on fertile soil as you're using it. But your consistency of using it may also help you identify people who could in the future be great referral sources for you.
And there's a whole bunch of other seeds if you jump a little deeper into Stacey Brown Randall's world.
Yes, there is.
So this brings us to Step 05:00 a.m.. I right.
Yes. This is our final step. And this is the step that most people, when I say it will be like, well, that makes sense. That was coming, right. And that is, look, you've identified your existing referral sources. You now know how to thank them properly every time they refer you. You've got a plan in place to run year after year to be memorable and meaningful on top of mind and take care of them and use the right language to plant referral seeds so that they're thinking about you from a referral perspective.
What's left as a busy business owner or sales professional is to have it into a process and a plan. And it's the ability to systematise this whole process so that it actually happens. When I decided to recognise Mother's Day and Father's Day for my top referral sources, I needed to execute on that in May and June. I couldn't get around to Mother's Day and Father's Day in September. It wouldn't have worked right. So there's the ability to build it, but then put it into a process to making sure the process works.
And that means we've got to systematise it. We've got to pull it off the Excel spreadsheet of how you built out your beautiful plan. And we got to make sure you're actually going to execute on those six to eight touch points in your first year. And that just comes down to execution and systemisation. And what can you outsource? What can you delegate? What do you have to do yourself? Do you have a team who can help you? And that's really the final step is just making sure we're setting you up for success to make it happen.
I think the reason I love this is a lot of people when they focus on business development or new opportunity, they focus out into the great blue Yonder where they haven't discovered relationships and everything has to be new. But actually, we all have this power base of people who already know us, people who already like us and most business owners that I speak to, they don't have processes and systems to properly leverage that. And the truth is, for all those people who don't like sales cold, calling all these traditional things, they're sitting on a little pot of gold in their existing contacts.
And what you've done is paint a really clear picture on how they can cross the divide between where they are and that sort of regular access to this ready opportunity that's just sitting waiting for them. Certainly, I'm going to be reviewing how I approach these things. I think this interview we've kind of rolled like a Hurricane across quite a lot of landscape, and hopefully people are listening, being slightly blown away, thinking, oh, my God, I got some work to do, but in a way that's exciting, it's far more productive to go and look at who are the few people who already love you who are ready to refer to you than all these grey faces of people that you have no relationship with.
It makes much, much more sense. And the truth is, for most businesses, what you've identified, there is probably enough to keep them fed forever. If you just look after those people who already love you, there's probably enough there for you to have an incredible business without having to do all of these yucky things. So I love what we've spoken about. Certainly, I'm going to buy your book and go deeper. I haven't done that yet. I'm sorry, that is fine.
Hopefully people listening are inspired to jump into your world a little bit. But if people do want to go further with you, how would you like them to do that?
We believe that this idea that being able to generate referrals without asking is while we've been doing this for almost a decade for a lot of people, it is new and where it sounds amazing and awesome, they really have to dig in to understand what it looks like to make it work within their business. So we are the big believers that there's a lot of content that we produce for folks to understand, to make things available to them as they're going on this journey. Obviously, we have a programme where we work with people who want to go deeper and learn the exact model.
But there is a lot of information out there. We've got the book Generating Business Referrals without asking. It's available from audio ereader printed copy. However, you like to consume your books and the podcast. If you're not a reader at all and you love the podcast Roadmap to Bear Your business. 80% of what we talk about is referral based. So those are two great places to start just to consume the content. Once you land in our world, we've got a Facebook group. We've got a quiz you can take.
It's called the Referral Ninja Quiz. We've got all these different things you can do to kind of just figure out where you are, where you're starting from and then get the right information you need to move forward. I always just tell folks I'm like, this is not like the Alison whatever that show is. Alice in Wonderland, right? This is not like the rabbit hole you're going to jump into and not get what you need out of it. This is actually pretty simple. What we teach is actually pretty simple.
There's just things you need to understand to make it ultimately work for you. So whether it's the book, the podcast, you just find yourself on our website, stacybrownmandal. Com. We've got tonnes of information out there for you, articles, quizzes, challenges. We've got all of it because we know people consume information in different ways. And the number one thing I have to do before people can start truly creating this referrals without asking. Explosion is I have to change how they think because even when you hear this interview and you're like, this is awesome.
I want to do it. I know there's going to be some deep seated thoughts that are going to come up about, but wait for 30 years, I've only been taught X or for 15 years, I've only been taught Y that we've got to overcome before you will truly commit to what this looks like. Even as amazing as it sounds. So lots of free resources. And then the person who's ready to go deeper and wants to learn it all and wants to jump straight to the front of the line and learn the model and the philosophy and everything and what to do.
We, of course, have our signature programme, which is called Growth by Referrals. And that is our pay programme that people can join as well.
I think just to remind the listener there are four routes that opportunity finds us. And yes, there's all the kinds of hip and trendy things you'll hear everyone talking about. But the most successful people I know, they have a plan for outbound sales, they have a plan for content marketing, they have a plan for ads, and they have a plan for referrals. Don't neglect the referral strategies that will, ultimately, as with most of the most successful people I know, bring most of the big opportunity. Doesn't matter what scale, what size people seem to get to.
Golden opportunities always come through referrals through relationships. Stacey, what's one thing you do now that you wish it started five years ago?
Oh, Mike, there's just so many right there's just so many. And I think about all the things I've learned and all the things I now have the ability to do that I didn't back then with growing my business and scaling my business. But, you know, actually, I think about that question from the perspective. If there was one thing I could have told myself five years ago that I kind of like, lean on as my mantra of these days because I've had the benefit of living through the last five years is that the journey just won't ever go according to plan.
It doesn't mean you won't arrive at the destination. It's just that life happens, and it may not go according to plan, but as long as you know where you're headed, it's okay to take different routes to get there. And I think for me, as a business owner who is also the mother to three children and wants to be an ever present wife and mom, I think it's just a constant reminder for me. And it would have been great to tell me this. Five years ago, when my kids were all in elementary school, they're now all in middle school, which makes them like the horrible human age.
But just reminding myself that the journey won't always go according to plan. But that doesn't mean you're not actually on the right path, and you're not actually headed in the right direction.
No wrong path. That's an awesome answer. Stacey Brown Harris thank you so much for your time. I've had a great time with you, and hopefully I speak to you again soon. But for now. Thank you so much.
Before I go, just a quick reminder to subscribe and join our Facebook group. You'll find a link in the show notes or visit Amplifyme FM Insiders also connect with me wherever you hang out, you'll find me on all the social platforms at Popgentle. If you enjoyed the show, then I would love a five star review on Apple podcast. It would make my day. And if you shared the show with a friend, you would literally make my golden list. My name is Bob Gentle. Thanks to you for listening.
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