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 !



Forrester Research Study confirms the Power of the Magic Mail

April 28, 2011

In our presentations, training courses and in “How to REALLY use LinkedIn” we talk a lot about the power of what we call “The Magic Mail“.

In that email you are introduced by a common contact to the person you want to get in touch with.

We already knew from experience that this approach works like magic (hence the name :-)).

Now I’m glad that a research by Forrester confirms what we have been speaking about the whole time.

This is the conclusion of the study sent to me by Bill Cates, President of Referral Coach International (sign up for his referral tips, they are great!)

The Forrester Research Study measured the level of trust people place in different sources of information.

At the bottom of their trust scale was a “company blog” – receiving a trust rating of 16%.
In the middle were such things as “radio” – at 39% – and “social networking site profiles from people you know” – at 43%.
At the top of the list was “email from people you know” at 70%.

70% is already a great number (especially when compared with the other sources!), but it can be higher if the right words are used. More about that in a future blog post.

To your success !


Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken om nieuwe klanten te vinden

July 22, 2009

This blog post is in Dutch.

Als je op zoek bent naar nieuwe klanten of iemand kent die verkoper is of een eigen zaak heeft, bekijk dan deze presentatie “Hoe LinkedIn nu ECHT gebruiken om nieuwe klanten te vinden in 10 slides”.

Deel dit gerust met anderen !


Jan Vermeiren is de oprichter van Networking Coach en spreker over netwerken en referrals

Networking Tool: Xobni

November 1, 2008

The free tool Xobni offers another view on the data of MS Outlook. Instead of using e-mails as the basis, a person is the basic unit. This means that there is a link from every e-mail to an extra toolbar which contains data about this person, the e-mails and files you have shared with them and who are the contacts you have in common.

Why would you use it?

Sometimes it cost a lot of time and effort to find the contact details of a person. Sometimes the e-mails you have exchanged with a person are in several folders and are they hard to find back. Xobni brings these data together in a concise format.

Xobni in detail.

Xobni shows the following data in a concise overview in Outlook:

  • Contact details: name, telephone number, email address, … are retrieved from the signature of an e-mail. There is even a link with LinkedIn to retrieve the picture of this person.
  • Statistics of when you have sent e-mails to this person and when you have received e-mails from this person. This is ideal to see when it is the best time to contact someone.
  • Overview of all exchanged emails with this person.
  • Overview of all exchanged files with this person.
  • Overview of the common network. This is a list of all people who were in cc in one of the e-mails. Most of the times they will know each other, except when you send emails to groups of people who have the same profile or interest, but don’t know each other.

Xobni is a very useful and free tool that can save you a lot of time.

One warning: some people have more than one email address. These are never shown in one overview. So you can still miss emails from someone if you don’t take this into account.

Are you interested in more tools to make your networking and referral life easier? You find an overview of networking and referral tools (English) or netwerk- en referral tools  (Dutch) on the Networking Coach website.

Have a great networking day !


Jan Vermeiren, Founder of Networking Coach and author of the network book Let’s Connect.

What to avoid when you want to increase the results of a sales team

October 25, 2008

On David Nour’s Relationship Economics blog David and Neal Gorenflo have posted an article “Colossal Sales Blunder #1: Separating Hunting from Farming

In this article they say that in most organisations sales people are divided in two teams: the ones responsible for new business (hunters) and the ones responsible for existing accounts (farmers).

In their opinion this is a blunder. Why? “Because the best way to win new clients is through existing ones. And also because team selling increases close rates.”

Although every situation is different I tend to agree with them. I see so many sales people make cold calls with low response and success rates meaning low ROI (Return on Investment). Next to that many sales people get discouraged because of this low success rate.

On the other hand I also don’t see the account managers whose only responsibility it is to keep customers ask for referrals. Although they are in the best position to do this, they don’t because “it is not their responsibility” to get new customers for the organisation.

For most situations I agree with David and Neal that the sales role is better not split. Also from personal experience as a business owner who is responsible for both sales and choosing suppliers I have experienced that I get more referrals when I have a better personal relationship with that customer and that I’m also more inclined to make introductions for suppliers I have a better relationship with. It is about knowing, liking and trusting (see the post “Do people know, like and trust you?” )

For organisations which can’t or don’t want to change the way they set up their sales teams, there might be an alternative: have the hunters and farmers communicate on a regular basis and make their pay dependable on the joint result. Or offer another kind of incentive so they will work together so the farmers ask for referrals and pass them on to the hunters.

If you haven’t read the article of David and Neal, I would encourage you to do it now, because it contains more intesting information and a statistic about team selling.

Have a great networking day !


Jan Vermeiren, founder of Networking Coach and author of the Everlasting Referrals Home Study Course

Networking Tip: Your reference group is the single most important factor in career success

October 11, 2008

Last week I read the following text in an article:

“David McLelland of Harvard did a 25-year research study of the factors that contribute most to success. He found that, holding constant for age, education, occupation, and opportunities, the single most important factor in career success is your “reference group.” Your reference group is made up of the people with whom you habitually associate and identify. These are the people you live, work, and interact with outside of work. You identify with these people and consider yourself one of them. They consider you one of them, as well.”

The question that follows is: “What can we do with this knowledge?”

Let’s explore some ways:

 1) In networking in a professional environment: who are the people you frequently meet? Are they people who help you reach your goals? Are they givers or sharers? Or only takers? (And how about yourself? Are you a giver/sharer or taker?)

2) In the referral process: are the people in your reference group connected to the prospects you want to meet? And who belongs to their reference group?

3) Many people are not happy in life. If that’s you: look at your reference group. How do they influence you? Chances are that there are people in your reference group that have negative energy and influence you consciously or subconsciously.

4) Many people don’t reach their goals or don’t take decisions in their life. Again: look at the reference group. Is it supporting you? No really, do they REALLY support you. As Anthony Robbins said: “Your peers (or reference group) pulls you down sometimes, not because they don’t love you, but just because they DO love you. They don’t want you to get hurt.” Sometimes our reference group sabotages us and most of the times not deliberately (see also a previous post).


Just give a thought about these 4 topics. As you see in my opinion you can have several reference groups in different parts of your life.

Also give a thought to this: what kind of reference group member are you? The supporting and inspiring kind? Or the down-pulling and negative kind?

Have a great networking week!


Founder of Networking Coach and networking speaker

PS: if you have more ideas about how to use them, feel free to send me an e-mail or post it as a comment.

Referral Tip: How To Ask For Referrals

July 5, 2008

This week’s post is a link to a short interview Alan Stevens did with me when we met at the Professional Speakers Association Holland Conference in Amsterdam earlier this year.

The short interview is about how to ask for referrals.

Alan is also a professional speaker, moreover he is the chairman of the Professional Speakers Assocation in the UK, and he is also a known as the Media Coach. Each week he posts a podcast with tips and interviews. Always very interesting content.

Have a great networking day !


PS: if you want to set up your own referral strategy or discover the other 6 steps of the Everlasting Referral Sequence, then the Everlasting Referrals Home Study Course might be a solution for you if you don’t live near a venue where you can attend an open training course or when your company doesn’t hire us (or other referral experts) to give a referral training course.

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