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.

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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


Turn Clients Into Word-of-Mouth Machines

August 25, 2011

This week’s blog post comes from Bill Cates’ newsletter, the Referral Minute (I encourage you to register for it as well since it contains many useful tips). I liked the idea so asked Bill’s permission to reproduce it here so you could also benefit from it.

I just conducted a special referral boot camp for a group of about 50 highly-successful financial advisors (I mean highly successful). One of the advisors shared what he does to generate a steady flow of referrals from his “A” clients.

This advisor turns his clients into Word-of-Mouth Machines by providing them with a continual flow of shirts, umbrellas, and other high-quality, utilitarian items that his clients use on a regular basis. He told the group that “a $50 shirt is a small investment to get your clients to let others know that they are using you.”

I’d like to add emphasis to the words quality and utilitarian. If the items you provide to your clients do not meet both criteria, you are probably wasting your money.

This advisor has created a “culture of referrals” among his clients. They love the work he does and are happy to spread the word in a low-key, easy way.

Isn’t it true that IF we get something from a company, we hardly want to use it because the item SCREAMS “I’m a billboard”?

How does it apply to your organization? What do you give away and will people be proud/happy to use or wear it? Or will they throw it away as seen as they return home?

To your success !

Jan


How Many Customers Do You REALLY Need?

June 30, 2011

In the last few weeks I have been sharing tips to get more referrals (“Want More Referrals? Do Your Homework!” and “Your Target Group is Crucial for Being Referable“).

One of the biggest problems is that most people have a hard time to use the parameters I have shared and refuse to define specific target groups.

The reason?

They are afraid to miss an opportunity!

This (limiting) belief is one of the biggest reasons people don’t have the success they can have and waste lots of time.

How to solve this?

One of the exercises we do in our training courses is looking at how many customers the participants actually need. Most of the time this number is smaller than they actually thought they needed.

On top of that we also look at how many customers they can (and want to) service.

By looking at those two numbers the participants get a new perspective on what they REALLY want and need. Since that number is almost every time smaller than they thought it was, it is easier to choose one to three specific target groups.

So my question to you is: how many customers do you need?

To your success !

Jan


Your Target Group is Crucial for Being Referable

June 16, 2011

Like I wrote in the blogpost Want More Referrals? Do Your Homework!, it is crucial to have a good definition of your target group in order to be more referable.

Doing business is not that difficult, if you do the basics right.

One of these basics is defining your target group, whether it is about finding new customers, employees, partners, investors, experts or a new job.

Here are some parameters to use to define your target group:

  • Geography: where do the people you want to reach live? Which country, region or city?
  • Industry: in which industry (or industries) are the people you want to get in touch with, active?
  • Function/Profession: which role do these people have?

The more clear this is for you, the easier it will be to find the right networking events, to use LinkedIn better and to “teach” your own contacts who you want to get in touch with.

To your success !

Jan


Want More Referrals? Do Your Homework!

June 2, 2011

In our referral training courses one of the most important topics is the preparation phase.

However, the problem for most people is that it is so simple that they don’t want to do the effort or don’t think of doing their homework.

What is it about?

You need to have a clear picture of who you want as a customer in your mind. Only when you have your target group clear to you and you are able to communicate that in a way that is easy to understand, your network will be able to become your ambassador.

One of my favorite quotes is: help your contact to help you!

So your “homework” for now is to think of who you want to get in touch with, whether it is a new customer, employer, employee, partner, supplier, investor, expert or anyone else.

In the next post I will give you some concrete tips.

To your success !

Jan


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