Friday, November 25, 2011

What is a Promoter and how do I make more of them?

In February, I wrote a blog post entitled: Stop Networking! You Already Know Enough People. While you don't see comments here at Blogger, I continually receive notes and in-person queries, many of which are basically the following question:

"OK, so how do I monetize my 'large enough' network?"

Good question. Strike that. Great and possibly, the best question.

First of all, there are three types of people in your network:
1) Promoters and prospects
2) Time sucks
3) Friends and family

Separate your network into the three categories as above.

If they fall into category 1… keep them on the list.
If they fall into category 2… take them off your list and DO NOT SPEND ANOTHER SECOND ON THEM. You will never get that time back. This is why you have so many people on your list and, adding up the hours spent on them will only make you cry. I suggest you throw away the rear view mirror and move forward.
If they fall into category 3… take them off your networking list and put them on your holiday card/BBQ invite list.

Your list should now only have promoters on it and should be, at most, 5% of the original size.

"OK, so how do I figure out who my promoters are?"

Assess them against the three attributes, starting with the first one.

1) Access.
They hang around people who could be your clients. If they do not have access to your prospect network, they can never be promoters and will only ever be time sucks. In other words: If they are on your networking list and they do not pass the "access test" then take them off your networking list. Send them e-blasts, perhaps, but not lunch invitations.
|> I've watched a lot of football over the years, and I have never seen someone in the stands throw a receiver a touchdown pass. Nor have I seen someone in the audience get an assist for a hockey or soccer goal. <|
2) Interest.
They believe you can help their network and want to help you. You can test this by providing them with a referral or an introduction to a promoter of their own and seeing if they return the favor. If they live at the end of a cul-de-sac... take them off your list. Or, you can ask for a specific referral and see how they react. Better, though, to start by helping them and see if they pay-this-forward, even if it's not to you.
3) Understanding.
They appreciate the value you can provide to their network. Note: I did not say they understand what you do, definitely not how you do it, or why you are so special. In many cases, (cough cough...approaching 100% of all cases), the only thing that makes you special is they are willing to refer you to their clients.
Prospect: "What sets you apart from the 500 other people who seemingly do what you do?"
You: "I'm in the room with you right now and they aren't."
Odds are, there are dozens or hundreds of people who do what you do and only your mother thinks you are special. (Or at least you hope she does.) Please do not waste any time trying to explain what you do or what sets you apart. Even if they could understand, which they can't, they don't care. They only care that you can help their network. Better to tell them when you can help. ... but that's a blog post for another day.

Next up:
> Triggers and USPs
> The LinkedIn trick for finding the real promoters in your network … and what you can do to find them if you aren't using LinkedIn. (Read: You like doing things the hard, old-fashioned way.)

No comments:

Post a Comment