• Due to Covid-19, business owners and business development managers should tap on virtual networking platforms to build referral pipelines. 
  • Before asking for referrals, one should build their online profile carefully, and look for relevant groups and contacts to connect. 
  • When asking for referrals, always look for common interests and focus on providing value to contacts.
  • After receiving referrals, thank your referrer and keep them updated.

Why are Business Referrals through Networking Platforms Important?

Referrals are essential to help businesses to grow and get new opportunities. It is part and parcel for business owners and business development managers to build reputations and attend networking events to grow their business via referrals.   

Research has shown that referrals have a 70% higher conversion rate among all the marketing channels. Customers/clients are 4x more likely to buy products and services from someone they trust. And 84% B2B marketers say that referral programs generate good or excellent leads.

B2B referrals encounters higher conversion rate.

B2B organizations with referrals encounter a 70% higher conversion rate.

However, with the current Covid-19 situation, it has become a challenge to get referrals by traditional networking and word-of-mouth. Thus, it is important for business owners and business development managers to tap on online networking platforms such as Linkedin, Facebook, or Telegram groups to build their referral pipelines. 

This is easier said than done. Without proper preparation, asking for referrals directly can come across as cold and intrusive. Continuous messaging will also be treated as spam. Here are some steps you can follow to get referrals the right way and get them from the right people.

Steps to Get Business Referrals through Networking Platforms Effectively

Before asking for business referrals,

1. Prepare your online profile carefully.
Give a proper elaboration of what your business does in your biography. It is important to treat your networking platforms like a networking event. A good online profile will allow the other party to understand your background quickly.

2. Look for online groups to join.
Ensure that the groups you joined are relevant to your business and the industry you intend to target. LinkedIn and Facebook have many groups with common interests, join a few that are relevant and introduce yourselves to the group. 

3. Build your online connections based on past events.
Go through the past events list you have attended physically and virtually. Identify potential targets based on their roles or business and request for connection.

    Online profile with picture

    Did You Know? An online profile with a picture gets 11 times more views!

    While asking for business referrals,

    1. When sending requests to connect, add a note.
    Bring up common interest and state the purpose for your connection request, this will help increase the chances of connecting.

    2. Asking about their business.
    Build a relationship with your connections. Understand their business and look for common goals. This will allow both of you to build trust and relationships for future business referrals.

    3. Help each other out and give referrals to others whenever possible.
    Not every conversation needs to be transactional and benefits you. Extending help to your fellow industry members can help you grow your value and presence rapidly, so you will be on the top of their minds when they want to make referrals next time.

     Referrer: A person who refers another person.

    Referee: A person who was referred by another person.

    After asking for business referrals,

    1. Remember to thank your referrer.
    Regardless of the outcome of a referral, always thank your referrer. This will show you are grateful for their help so they will be more likely to help you next time. 

    2. Follow up with the referee.
    Always follow up with the referee. It is very likely the referrer had mentioned you to the referee. Don’t leave the referrer’s goodwill hanging. If there is a change in business needs that makes follow up unnecessary, let the referrer know. 

    3. Update your referrer about the outcome
    Keep your referrer posted about the outcome so that he/she feels appreciated and valued. 

    ReferReach can Help You Secure Referrals Easily on Virtual Networking Platforms

    Thinking of getting referrals without any hassle?

    ReferReach is the platform you are looking for. It guides you through profile setup; introduces relevant opportunities within your network; and follows up with referrals automatically. ReferReach strives to make referral giving and tracking as easy as possible.

    Data don’t lie; business referral is the KING!