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Attracting New Business, Who’s Referring Your Company?

06.14.13   |   Sales Recruiting   |   Sean Cashman, Senior Consultant at Treeline Incorporated

Why happy customers are a great marketing resource

Every time I sit down with a company to learn how their sales process works and what kind of sales professionals they are looking for, I hear the same message over and over. 

The importance of referrals for getting new business

“We need a pure hunter to go out there and bring on new business.”

It makes sense, a pure hunter:

  • Captures new business,
  • New business brings new dollars,
  • New dollars equates to growth and everyone is happy. 

This is the formula I hear day-in-and-day-out. 

But, is new business worth its weight?  Does the cost of going after a new client to qualify, present, and close make the most sense?   Is there a more efficient and less costly way to gain new dollars? – some seem to think so.

In the book, “Flip the Funnel” by Joseph Jaffe, he talks about the power of growing existing business revenue and gaining referrals from your existing client base.  The book examines the cost of growing existing business compared to the cost of capturing organic new business.  It is not a crazy idea – keep your current client base happy.  Keep them so happy that they will serve as your spokespeople to their networks, bring you new prospect clients, and cut down on the cost of new business.

I see a huge value in taking this approach to nurture existing clients and gain referrals. In order to keep a loyal and happy clientele, you must offer a quality service that keeps your customers coming back. By providing valuable, rich and useful content you build a reputable brand allowing your company to be seen as a trustworthy business partner. In essence, your audience will not feel as if they are being sold to but see it as building a relationship.  And as a result, they spread the word becoming part of your lead generation.

At the same time, I feel that it would be foolish to think you can abandon hunting new business.  With all of that being said, the game of hunting new business has changed greatly over the past few years and continues to change.  Content, SEO, Webinars, White Papers, Inbound Marketing, Lead Nurturing, etc – these all add up.

I feel that somewhere in all of this lies the ultimate approach, but that leads to the discussion of what is the best sales model for your company (that is a different blog).

Through all of this - there is one absolute truth to take away, the way we buy and sell products and services is changing…scratch that…it is evolving.  The day of the cold calling is not going away, but it is evolving into the day of the warm calling.  If you and your organization are not already exploring these innovative approaches to your sales model – well, you are simply not evolving. 

Have you experienced any noteworthy successes or challenges?  I would love to hear them.

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