Early on in The Go-Giver, Joe, upon realizing he would not land a desired account, referred them to one of his competitors who was in a better position to help them.
No, he didn’t want to do that, but he understood it was the right thing to do for the client.
This later came back to Joe in a big way.
Of course, it doesn’t always work out like that. After all, life is life. Then again, that’s not why you make that referral.
You do it because it’s in the best interest of the customer. That’s the only reason for doing so. And, that’s the only reason you need.
The definite result is that you feel good about doing what you feel was right. The very likely result is that the customer feels good about you, trusts you, and respects you. And, he or she is very likely to come back to you when you can help them.
It also might result in some serious referrals, as well. After all, a person can’t feel much safer referring someone they care about to a salesperson who has demonstrated that their ultimate objective is the client’s best interest.
John David Mann and I provided an example of this in Go-Givers Sell More, and we’ve both seen it and experienced it personally in our business careers.
So has Erin Bradley.
Erin is a mortgage lender based out of Winter Park, Colorado. She also wrote a fantastic little book titled, Pursuing Freedom in which she shares her methodology for growing her business through referrals.
At one point, Erin relates an incident where a prospective customer asked if she could help refinance her home. Unfortunately, Erin’s company was not able to assist her.
As she describes it:
“Rather than give her the bad news and leave it at that, I researched a few local banks and found one that could help her. Despite not having done the loan myself, she was grateful for the direction and began referring business my way. To this day, I can easily count more than 30 transactions over the past few years that came to me as a result…”
30 transactions!! Again, it doesn’t always work out like that. However, when your goal is to help the customer regardless of the outcome for yourself, the sale will occur directly much more often than not. And, even when it doesn’t, the seeds of goodwill you’ve planted will create that benevolent context for your success both short-term and long-term.
Yes, placing the other person’s interests first is actually the most profitable way of doing business.
Can you share a similar story? We’d love to hear it!