30. Form your own networking group
While there are many networking groups you can join out there, they often already have an advisor who offers the products and services you offer. Sometimes, you can join these by defining what you do differently. You can be the insurance member, while the existing advisor can be the investment advisor.
Instead, you can form your own group. Bring on an accountant, a few different kinds of attorneys, a realtor, a chiropractor and other professionals. Your purpose will be to get to know one another and to try to assist one another with referrals.–Sandy Schussel, LLC, sandyschussel.com
29. The federal way
Selling to the Federal government can be lucrative. Those approved businesses are known as certified government contractors.
The identities of these businesses is public information, available through the website for the System for Awards Management, or SAM (www.sam.gov). The homepage includes a search records feature. By clicking “Advanced Search” and location you can specify contractors in your own city.
You can also scan for Socio-Economic Status. An insurance agent who formerly served in the US military might choose to focus on veteran owned businesses. Ideally you want small companies in fields like roadbuilding and engineering.
Contact information is included in the profile. It’s not difficult to determine where they live and “who knows who” to facilitate introductions.
Remember the rules. Always respect the legal and privacy notices. Only use websites for the purpose the site originally intended. Secure approval from your manager before embarking on prospect research involving the Internet.–Bryce Sanders, President, Perceptive Business Solutions Inc. 28. The social network
Who’s friendlier, you or your spouse? Who has the most friends and more social? My wife is one of my best lead sources. Her social interests are not encumbered by the assumption that the friendship is meant for business purposes. She’s just friendly. She is also good at listening for statements from friends that mention they might need my help.
Her new friends often ask what her husband does for a living, so she tells them. They often say they can use some help with their finances. Since she has a contact number, she gets permission for me to contact them for an appointment or she sets a meal get together. I never bring up my practice at the get together, but when I ask about their work, they get around to asking about mine.–Kim Magdalein 27. Use LinkedIn
Become a 1st degree connection with your clients on LinkedIn. Take a look at their first degree connections and do a little research on some of them to get a sense about whether they might be good prospects. Then, when you’re talking with your client, ask whether he or she has any real relationship with any of the ones you’ve chosen and if he or she would be comfortable introducing you to them. Arrange the introductions.
Some advisors simply list all of the 1st degree connections and ask the client how well he knows each of them and which ones he would be comfortable introducing them to. This also works but might create a little more resistance.
Even clients who are opposed to giving referrals are delighted to make introductions in this way—exercising their “influence” muscle.–Sandy Schussel, LLC, sandyschussel.com 26. Leverage an expert
Develop a relationship with an expert that can give you leading edge sales ideas on a timely basis that you can distribute to centers of influence and contact clients with.