Name Dropping: The Do’s and Don’ts of Relationship Building

Salespeople and business developers have been name dropping for years. It can be an effective tool to help foster business relationships…if it is done the correct way! So let’s talk about what you can and cannot do when it comes to name dropping:

Do:

  • Do Get Permission: Clear with your relationship FIRST before you ever use their name to make a new introduction – ask them for help and they’ll most likely handle the introduction for you.
  • Do Your Research: Make sure to find out more about the relationship between your contact and the person you’d like to meet before reaching out
  • Do Give them an “Out”: Sometimes a relationship just isn’t at the point where someone feels they can make introductions, give it time
  • Do Be Generous: Be grateful for the help, make sure to say thank you, offer introductions on your side or a thank you lunch or breakfast.  I’ve even received gift cards from those I’ve helped.
  • Do Be Gracious: When reaching out to your friend’s contact, be sure to keep in mind that you can either strengthen or damage their relationship – your goal is to be a resource and strengthen their relationship.  You want their contact to go back to your friend and say thank you for making the introduction.
Don’t:

  • Do NOT drop someone’s name without permission
  • Do NOT drop someone’s name that you really don’t know and act as though you do
  • Do NOT blindly call someone without doing any research on their company
  • Do NOT try to cram a square peg into a round hole. When someone tells you why they aren’t the right fit and they really aren’t, don’t push it
  • Do NOT make the person who introduced you look like a fool
  • Do NOT call the same prospect multiple times dropping multiple names of people you do not know.


If name dropping is done the right way – the ethical way – it can be a powerful sales technique. But you have to be careful. Remember, there is a difference between someone you have met, seen at a networking event, talked with briefly, and someone you can call a friend. So when you open a sales call or sales meeting with the following phrase – “I’m a good friend of ______________ and they said I need to meet you!” – make sure it is actually true! Name dropping in order to get an appointment or close a deal is just bad business. You will get found out and it will hurt your reputation.

“This behavior doesn’t work anymore,” said Springboard CEO Karin Schwartz. “I’m not sure it ever really did, but it certainly doesn’t today.”

People buy products and services, they aren’t sold!

If you have any questions about Business Development, please contact Springboard Business Development by calling 410-832-7560 or click here today!

Located in Baltimore, Maryland, Springboard offers outsourced sales solutions for businesses in the professional services arena. Our approach to business development makes it easy to find new clients without the financial burden of an in-house business developer.

At Springboard we know sales!

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Business is All About Building the Relationship

Revenue is made from transactions.

Businesses grow through relationships.

Relationships build long term business, while transactions are just about the present. Today’s buyers are looking for someone they can trust, someone who delivers.  If you sell for the transaction your customer is treated like a commodity. So you must build the relationship first, then make the sale. This shows your customer respect and will have them coming back to you the next time they have a need.

Remember, a single sale is nice, but steady business is the key to long-term success. So engage with your potential client and dig deeper. Get to know your client, his/her company, and company’s needs.

Respect is at the heart of building business relationships. As one article put it, respect is the “glue that holds together the functioning of teams, partnerships and managing relationships.”

Too often, salespeople go into meetings and focus on their product, throwing information and sales figures at their potential client. But, in the end, clients buy relationships, not products. This means that it’s less about your product and a whole lot more about how you connect and engage with your client.

In the end, no matter how objective your potential client may be, when it comes to choosing a supplier or business partner, most people prefer someone they know.

If you have any questions, contact Springboard Business Development by calling 410-832-7560 or click here today!

At Springboard we offer outsourced sales solutions for businesses in the professional services arena. It’s simple, while you focus on delivery, we bring our sales expertise and connections to focus on your business development challenges.

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Sources:
Business Relationships LeadingInsight.com

Business Relationship Management ImpactFactory.com

How to Build Relationships for Business Success Suite101.com

 

Using Your Time Wisely

Running your own company is no easy task. You have to address every aspect of your business with the utmost diligence and, let’s face it, you just do not have the time to give everything the attention it deserves. So where do you cut corners? Can you afford to cut corners?

There has to be a better solution.

There is. Outsourcing.

What if your business could outsource business development to a team of professionals at a fraction of the cost? That’s where Springboard comes in. At Springboard we offer outsourced sales solutions for businesses in the professional services arena. It’s simple, while you focus on delivery, we bring our sales expertise and connections to focus on your business development challenges. Springboard focuses in the four critical areas of business development:

Exposure

•     Networking

•     Speaking Opportunities

•     Social Media – research, connect with and directly interact with potential prospects, join and become active in relevant groups, post pertinent articles/white papers to help you be seen as an expert

Partnerships

•     Identify potential markets for partners

•     Research who’s who in the marketplace

•     Connect with and Directly interact with potential partners

•     Make introductions to client once identified and qualified

Prospecting

•     Lead Generation

•     Lead Qualification

•     Understanding of Prospect Needs

•     Introduction to Client as the expert to handle the identified need

Communication

•     Managing the communication before, during and after the proposal

•      Asking the questions you can’t ask

•      Ensuring we’re on the same page as we move through the buying process

When done right, outsourcing will both help your company grow and save money. This article from About.com outlines the top 4 advantages to outsourcing your business development needs.

  1. Focus on Core Activities: Every aspect of your business requires great attention to detail. Outsourcing those activities in which you simply do not have the resources to address properly, will allow you to re-focus your time without sacrificing quality or service.
  2. Save Money: Perhaps you do not have the money to hire another, much needed employee. Instead of ignoring some aspect of your business or hiring an employee that you cannot afford, outsource your extra needs to a well-qualified company. Outsourcing will often cost less than hiring a full-time employee, meaning you are getting the attention to detail you need, but at a fraction of the cost.
  3. Flexibility: Instead of hiring seasonal workers/employee during your busy season, outsource your additional work.
  4. Continuity & Risk Management: Outsourcing will provide a level of continuity to the company while reducing the risk that a substandard level of operation would bring to the company.

If you have any questions about outsourcing, contact Springboard by calling 410-832-7560 or click here today!

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