Sunday, January 20, 2008

66 Tips For Better Networking - #52 - Get People Talking

Route 66 - The Journey Toward Success

Get People Talking About You

How would you feel if you heard that another person in your business community was praising you and your product / service? My guess is that you would be thrilled. The proof is in that Word-Of-Mouth is the very effective.

According to the Bazaarvoice website, consumers trust friends above experts when making buying decisions (65% trust friends, 27% trust experts, 8% trust celebrities) and that 86.9% of respondents said they trust a friend's recommendation over that of a critic,.... while 83.8% said they would trust users of a product over a critic.

Thus, the praise of others is extremely valuable to your future success.

But how can you get others singing your praises from the highest mountain tops? You cannot just call them and ask them to do this, even if you know they feel warm and fuzzy about you and your company. While most sales training teaches you to ask your clients for referrals, not everyone is comfortable receiving such a request out of the blue. Additionally, some people are just not cut out to be evangelists. They like you and want to see you succeed, but they are not the type of person who can tell their friends about you. That is okay, they can still be good friends, just don't expect too much from them.

What you need to do is to identify the individuals in your network who can and will talk positively about you and your product / service and then do two things:

1. Educate them about your business and the value you bring to others. Make sure that they understand the benefit that you get from their endorsement, and help them know what to say. More importantly, lead by example and be an evangelist for them. If you want them to talk about you, you had better be waving their flag too.

2. You have to give them something new and spectacular to talk about. If they have known about you for years, and even been active in supporting you with referrals, you still need to give them fresh things to talk about. It is easy for a company to become yesterday's news or even a commodity.

Getting others to talk about you and promote your efforts is never easy. Business professionals are very busy trying to meet their own projections and quotas. They have bosses who are myopic about their own bottom line, and no matter how much they like you, you are not their priority. However, if they are impressed with your cutting edge and ever changing offerings, and they know you are helping them succeed, you will see them looking for ways to help you.

Have A Great Day.


1 comment:

Unknown said...

Great advice. I finally learned this lesson a couple of years back but didn't firmly learn it until the last few months. The key to making a change for myself at work was to get folks from appreciation of my work to talking about that appreciation and respect.

In turn, I do my best to relate positive and newsworthy things about others.

Thanks for the tips.