November 20, 2011

Hi,

thanks for visiting this blog.

From Nov 2011, I continue blogging on the website of the book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” (which you can download for FREE!) together with co-author Bert Verdonck.

We also blog now in English and in Dutch.

Let’s continue the conversation over there !

Jan


Example of a Magic Mail for Non-Sales Related Introductions

October 13, 2011

Last week I gave an example of a Magic Mail to introduce two people to each other who might do business.

But there will be many times that you want to introduce two people to each other who might be interesting to each other on another level or for other reasons than a supplier-customer relationship.

This is an example of a Magic Mail for people who work for a large company and want to make “internal” introductions.

To: Thomas.Hunter@company-abc.com
Cc: Sue.Allen@company-abc.com
Subject: introduction

Hi Thomas,

I want to introduce you to Sue Allen (in cc). Sue is one of the team members of the Eureca project. As you know the Eureca project faced lots of challenges with legislation changing and some team members being moved to other countries. But you know the saying “a challenge is a way to grow”. And that’s exactly what happened to Sue. Sue got the daunting task to take over part of the project regarding legislation. And she did that really well! I experienced her knowledge myself when I had to deal with the local law in a number of Asian countries. Sue does know very much about this and has built a good network to support her. I definitely recommend her for your next project!

Sue,

Thomas Hunter is one of our international project leaders. I know he has had difficulties in the past finding the right people for his team with regard to local legislation. He is now assembling the team for his next project and I think your expertise will benefit this project. Thomas is a great man to work with. I enjoyed the way he leads his teams: he supports his team members in every way he can and encourages them to take responsibility. He is also very good at delegating decision power to his team members. As you know I find this very important myself. In my opinion he is one of the best project leaders of our company.

In addition of a possible professional match, you will have lots to talk about your shared passion for winter holidays and more specifically snowboarding.

I suggest the two of you get together for a talk.

Thomas, you can reach Sue at: (telephone number Sue)
Sue, you can reach Thomas at: (telephone number Thomas)

Good luck!

Jan

I hope you now understand that you can use a Magic Mail in almost any circumstance where people could benefit from knowing each other.

To your success !

Jan

PS: this example comes from the book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn“. Go to the website to download a free light version of the book, a self-assessment and updates of the book.


Example of a Magic Mail

October 6, 2011

Last week I mentioned that sending Magic Mails is an excellent way of leading by example to receive referrals.

Some readers asked for an example.

So here is one (from the book “How to REALLY use LinkedIn“)

To: eric.rogers@best-accountant-in-the-world.com
Cc: john.johnson@web-designer-number-one.com
Subject: introduction

Hi Eric,

I want to introduce you to John Johnson (in cc). John is the Managing Director of Web Designer Number One. John may be the guy that can help you out with your new website. They make great websites (on their website http://www.web-designer-number-one.com you find lots of examples and references). I’ve known John for a while and even worked with him at ABC Company. One of the things I will always remember him by, is his ability to offer a solution that satisfies the needs of the customer while staying within the budget. He is really customer focused. I even recall him a few times recommending another solution or even another vendor if he thought it was in the interest of his customer. I definitely recommend him and his team!

John,

Eric Rogers is my accountant and also a personal friend. In fact, he is such a good accountant because he is more focused on people than on numbers! Eric is looking for a new website. And because of our joint experiences and the great job you did for SuperMarket XYZ (I accidentally heard their Marketing Manager bragging about you at the last Chambers of Commerce meeting), I thought you might be the perfect candidate.
I suggest the two of you get together for a talk. Maybe you can do this combined with watching a soccer game? I understood the both of you are fans of Manchester United.

Eric, you can reach John at: (telephone number John)
John, you can reach Eric at: (telephone number Eric)

Good luck!

Jan

 

 

Let’s take a look at the “ingredients” of the Magic Mail:


Header

• To: the person who is the “receiver” of the product, services or help.
• Cc: the person who is the “supplier” of the product, services or help.
• Subject: “introduction”: this makes very clear what this email is about.

You can put more people in the “to” and “cc” field if that’s appropriate. You can also put everybody in the “to” field, but for me this makes it easier to know who I introduced to whom. This is especially useful for your own “follow-up” or “stay in touch” actions.

Body

• First I address the receiver then I address the supplier.
• I always give the reason for connecting the both of them.
• After addressing the receiver I also always address the supplier so he knows something about the receiver and especially about my relationship towards the receiver. This makes it easier for him to find common ground. And to start the relationship on a much higher level than with a “cold call”. In this example I even go a bit further: I go to the “value” level. Both are very customer and people focused. This is a very strong basis to build a relationship on. And especially when a third party with whom they both have a good relationship with points this out (which is me in this case).
• The same applies, of course, for the receiver with regard to the supplier.
• I include what I appreciate about the person, organization, product or service. This way I maintain and strengthen my relationship with every party. Even when there is no future interaction between them, the email was worth the effort as a “relationship building action”.
• I also try to find commonalities on another level than the professional one. In this case they share a passion for soccer and they even support the same team. There is an instant bond. This bond exists most of the time (remember the 6 degrees of proximity), but we don’t always find it in a conversation because we didn’t talk about the areas where we might be related. If you as the connector know about the interests that two people share, tell them. This way you help them to get a flying start.
• Include other references and objective parties if possible. The better the receiver knows them the better the reputation of the supplier. In this example I first referred to the references at the website of Web Designer Number One. Then I gave a second reference: the Marketing Manager of Supermarket XYZ.

Conclusion

• Call to action: I suggest that they contact each other. This means:
– THEY are expected to take ACTION, and there are no barriers to do this, because I (the respected and trusted third party) suggested them to do this.
– I put the telephone number of the “supplier” first, because I want to encourage the “receiver” to make contact. This is more comfortable for the “supplier”. This way I try to decrease the feeling of “selling” something as much as possible. And I open the possibilities of building a relationship and helping each other out.
– They contact EACH OTHER, not me anymore. I step out of the process. I did my part of the job: connecting them. Now it’s up to them. This helps me to spend my time wisely as I’m not the intermediary.
• Telephone contact data: so they can quickly reach each other. If they want to have contact via email, they already have it in the header of the email. I don’t recommend following up on an introduction like this via email. The way is wide open for a personal contact via the telephone.

For some people this example might be perceived as too pushy. Please note that this is an email to two people you already know and have a good relationship with. In this case I am very confident that bringing them together will be beneficial for both of them.

To your success !

Jan

PS: there is a free light version of the “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” available in English or Dutch. Click on the link.


Lead By Example by Sending Magic Mails

September 29, 2011

Two weeks ago I wrote a blog post about leading by example to get more referrals.

I explained to look for ways to help someone (in this case the person you want a referral from) by introducing or referring them to someone who is interesting to them. In this way they will experience themselves how this works and reap the benefits. Not only will they be more open to help you, but they will also understand how to do it.

The “tool” we advise to use is called the Magic Mail.

The Magic Mail is actually a “normal” email in which you introduce two people to each other.

Why do I call it the “Magic” Mail?

Because the results can be magical!

Its primary function is that the receiver of the email experiences that you took time and made an effort (so it must be important enough). Besides the Know, Like, Trust factor is also transferred, creating the foundation of a potential relationship between the two people.

Of course it depends on the relationship between you and the two people you introduce whether there just a few sparkles of magic or huge fireworks.

To your success !

Jan


If You Want to be in the Media, Be Online and Especially on LinkedIn

September 22, 2011

Like anybody else journalists and reporters have to do more in less time.

When they are looking for information, they use the web a lot (surprise surprise).

However there are some “characteristics” you might be interested in to know about.

These are some findings of the Arketi Web Watch Media Survey (from a blog post on the Marketingcharts website):

- LinkedIn is the most popular social network among business journalists, with 92% having a LinkedIn account (85% Facebook and 83% Twitter).
– Virtually all (98%) journalists read news online, and 91% search for news sources and story ideas.
– Many engage in activities such as social networking (69%) and microblogging (66%), while more than half blog (53%).
– Despite high levels of social network membership, only 44% of journalists obtain story ideas from microblogs, while 39% obtain them from social networking sites.
– 82% of business journalists say a company without a website is less credible, and 81% turn to a company site when they are unable to reach a source.
– 85% call industry experts for breaking news.

What could be the conclusions?

1) You need to be present online with a website, a LinkedIn Profile (personal) and a LinkedIn Company Profile.
2) You could start building relationships with journalists by following them on Twitter and commenting on their blogs, stories (on the website of their magazine) and microblogs/status updates.
3) You need to be where they are when they need an industry expert (fast): on LinkedIn.

To your success !

Jan


Referrals: Lead By Example

September 15, 2011

Last week I wrote about the importance of your expectations when asking for referrals.

I got a few emails that it still was hard for some people to ask for referrals.

They wrote that their customers don’t know how to do it so they don’t ask anymore.

One of the best ways to get results, is to show them first.

Ask them who they need to achieve their targets.

If they own a business or are in sales, that would be new customers. However in many cases your customers are not looking for new customers themselves since they are in human resources, finances, IT or other departments.

Then ask them: “Who do you want or need to reach your goals or do your job?”, “Who do you want to meet?” or “What kind of expert would you like to meet to learn from?”

Then look for ways to get them in touch with each other.

After they have seen your example, they will be more inclined to help you as well. And when they tell you they don’t know how to do this, simply refer to the connection you made for them.

To your success !

Jan


What Are Your Expectations When Asking For Referrals

September 8, 2011

Three weeks ago I wrote a blog post about “What are your expectations when going to events“.

The same information applies to asking for referrals.

When you ask a current customer to refer you to a potential customer, what do you expect?

Do you expect them to come with objections or do you expect them to happily help you?

Again, the expectations you have will heavily influence the result.

Of course you need to have a good product/service and be prepared to objections, but what are you focusing on? A positive result or a negative result?

If you can just change your mind from rather negative to rather positive, this will already make a huge difference in your results!

To your success !

Jan


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