Episode 34: Five Things We Want from Our Clients
Listen as the Social Sales Link team talks about the “5 Things We Want from Our Clients”.
In this episode, the Social Sales Link team will teach you how to connect with your clients, and how it’s going to open up avenues of five things that you can get from them, and that you can obtain from them.
Hey, welcome back to Making Sales Social Live! And we’re here today to talk about the five things that we want from our clients, only five.
Brynne Tillman 0:11
Bill McCormick 0:14
So we’re not asking for much
Brynne Tillman 0:16
Not a lot, and not all at once. (Bob) That’s a good point. (Bill) Overwhelming. (Brynne) It can be, so let’s start with the first one, which is so obvious, it really has very little to do with LinkedIn. Which is more business, what more business can we get from our client?
Bill McCormick 0:33
That so makes sense, you know, we have not because we asked not, (Brynne) right, and I think it’s finding a way to do it that’s not like pitchy, or not being aggressive, or not being a pass, right?
Brynne Tillman 0:48
Well, I didn’t have to solve the problem, right? So it can support, so for us for a very long time, we were just trainers, we didn’t do coaching, and there wasn’t a challenge, where a lot of our clients were like; “We want more of you, we want more of you”, and you don’t keep training the same thing over and over again. So we added group coaching, right? So that was where we could get more business from the same client in a way that’s serving them.
Bob Woods 1:13
Exactly, and the nice thing about that is, when you’re trying to get more business, your clients can actually tell you what they want from you, so that you can provide that to other clients too.
Brynne Tillman 1:27
We’ve done that almost all of our products and services are born out of the needs and the requests of our clients. So that’s perfect, number two, Internal Introduction. So, I can’t tell you how many pilots we start with, right? And they come in, and they do, we’re doing 20 reps, but there’s 400. (Bob) Yep. So now we do, we start with that, now we use LinkedIn for this, you know, a lot of times they’ll say; “Oh, yeah, just our department, maybe they don’t even realize it’s a pilot, right? I’m just in charge of my department. So what do we do on LinkedIn? Bill, what do you do on LinkedIn?
What we want to do is you want to socially surround the account, you want to look at who else is in similar positions, and you know, for us, we’re looking at people who are VPs of sales, business development, marketing. But for you, it’s who are the ancillary, so if you deal with marketing on a regular basis, maybe you also want to–actually everyone wants to look at human resources, alright, this is my secret, alright, because you want to be connected to the people in HR, because they always know who’s leaving and who’s coming. You don’t want to be a one trick pony with an account and just have that one person, that’s my only person, they’re my champion, they’re my go-to. I’m not connected with anyone else in the company, because when they leave, then you start over just like a new vendor. So you want to make sure you’re connecting with your champion, but then also, who are their peers? Who are not only in the same department, but are in other departments? Who are their bosses, right, their superiors? Who reports directly to them, because they may get promoted into that position. But then what other departments can you look at that you can provide your services for, because you don’t just want to go vertical in an organization, we want to go horizontal in that orientation also.
Brynne Tillman 3:23
I love that, love that. So buyer map, right? Go in, figure out who all these people are, and the internal introduction is going to that person that hired you initially, and saying, here are the 12 other people ultimately, I’d like to get in front of in your organization, would you be open to making some introductions and telling them how wonderful our products and services are for you and your department? So that’s perfect, next one is External Introduction. Bob, you
talk a little bit about external introductions.
Bob Woods 3:53
Yes. So that comes into essentially what we talked about a lot, which is just, you know, taking inventory of who that person knows outside of the company, and then just either asking for referrals, just for introductions, rather, like what we just talked about, or just ask for permission to name drop, and then at that point, you have good reasons to go to these other people who the person within the company has said; “Yeah, sure, please go ahead and contact them”, or “Yes, I’ll provide an introduction for you”, and then connect with them on LinkedIn, and you know, hopefully build the relationship at that point.
Brynne Tillman 4:33
So let’s bring that together. Because that’s a brilliant way to look at this right. So what do we want to do? We want to go to our client on LinkedIn, mine their connections to identify exactly who are the other people like them. In our case, it would be sales leaders, chief revenue officers, chief marketing officers or VP of sales, right? So we identify our existing clients, who do they know as Bob said, outside of that organization, and then I go, you know; “George, I really loved working with you, and we’re so glad that we’ve been able to do you know, help your team do X, Y, and Z. I’m curious, you’re connected to quite a few people on LinkedIn that I’m looking to get in front of, can I run these names by you and get your insights?”. Right, and this is what Bob’s talking about. This is so important, so now we have this one-on-one conversation, and maybe we had 18 names, and it brings it down to six people that our clients have. These would be great, and they know me well, and now you’re going to determine are they the kind of client that would be happy to make an introduction for you, or do you want to do what Bob was saying is permission to name drop, so say; “George, thanks for these insights, I really appreciate it, when I reached out to each of them. Can I mention that you’re my happy client and you thought we should talk?”. And so you know, half of those will convert into conversations.
Bob Woods 5:55
And it’s that simple top, especially with the name dropping, right?
Bill McCormick 6:01
And so, you know, look at your calendar, what meetings do you have between now and then in the next two weeks, we’re in the fourth quarter here. I’m sure you’re reaching out to your clients, and you’re and you’re talking, you’re having conversations, before you go into that meeting, or before you get on Zoom, or get on the phone with that person, take some time look through their connections, so much better than saying; “So Brynne, if you’ve been happy with our services, you can think of anyone that could use our services, please don’t hesitate to recommend us”, and Brynne says; “Sure, Bill, I’ll do that”, and hangs up the phone that has a bajillion other things that she’s dealing with, rather end the call with; “Hey Brynne, If you have like 10 more minutes, I was looking through your LinkedIn profile, and I found these five people that I’m looking to get in front of you mind if I just go over those names with you real quickly”.
Brynne Tillman 6:51
Love, love, love, love, love. Number four that we want from our–number four that we want from our clients, our vendor introductions, this is such a big deal. Because when we are prospecting, it’s like fishing with a pole, right? We’ve got one pole, one line, one hook, one worm, and we’re out there catching one fish, when we have relationships with other vendors that are not competitors, that are selling to our clients, it’s like fishing with a net. That’s why they call it networking! Okay, that was really bad, just came to my head, I couldn’t help it, it’s like Tourette’s, just networking. Okay, so it’s, but, you know, it’s now we’re connecting with lots of different people that sell to the people that we want to get in front of, and if we can build deep enough relationships with them, we can both ask for, you know, referrals, we can give referrals, and build relationships with people, we’re being fed opportunities on a consistent basis. Who wants to add to that?
Bob Woods 7:57
Yeah, that’s really important. Because I mean, I think that a lot of a lot of salespeople out there just don’t think about and I mean, you know, because they are going with that fishing pole analogy, but I think that, you know, the moment that they hear of this, it’s like, “Oh my God, that’s such a great idea. Why didn’t I think of that?”, and then as they start implementing it, they will not only be able to give and receive referrals, but they’ll develop relationships with these people as well, and who knows, they may find out things about the industry that they may not know about, and there are all kinds of benefits to this, besides just straight sales, But obviously, straight sales and giving and receiving referrals is probably the main thing that you’re looking for.
Brynne Tillman 8:41
So one of the reasons that I love this, and I mean, we could go out on LinkedIn and find lots of potential referral partners, when we get vendors that our clients refer to us. Number one, they’re already vetted, so we are comfortable introducing them into our network. Number two, that we’re comfortable, they’re more comfortable introducing us to their network. But number three, which should have been number one, they take our call,(Bill) right? (Bob) Yeah. (Brynne) Right, because we have a shared client, they’re not going to risk not having a conversation with us, when they came in from an active client, because that could get back to that, to the client. So they take your call, you build rapport, much faster, you’re comfortable and making introductions and they’re comfortable making them for you. What’s number five?
Bill McCormick 9:33
Number five is Recommendations and Case Studies. So this is huge, and I’ll just stop for a moment and say something here. This is why all these reasons, but this one especially, is why you need to be connected on LinkedIn to all of your customers, and please don’t say to me; “But Bill, if I’m connected to my customers, my competition can see that and they may steal them away from me”. If you’re worried about a connection on LinkedIn stealing a client away from you, we have bigger issues to talk about. I’ll leave that there, drop that mic and say, let’s move on. By being connected to your clients, as you can see, there are a number of ways that it can benefit you. Recommendations and case studies are huge, so what I do is when a client emails me, or we’re talking: “Hey, wow, that training you did was phenomenal. Here are the results we got. It was so wonderful”. I immediately say; “Hey, well, thanks Brynne, for that. Hey, Would you do me a favor? Could you write me a recommendation on LinkedIn for that?”. And the reason that I want to do that is because recommendations on your LinkedIn profile are social proof that you do what you say you do. We talk all the time about creating a value centric profile, and in that value centric profile, from top to bottom, you’re telling people the value you bring, how do you help people, you’re providing that education. The recommendation is the bragging part, but you don’t have to do it, you let other people do it, who are over the moon about you, and so Brynne, tell everyone how we use this, how it’s really benefited us.
Brynne Tillman 11:15
Yeah, so you know, we’re when we’re selling in the corporate world, often we’ll have the buyer responsible for vetting the vendor, us, right. So often they’ll say, you know, when we come in and referred or recommended, this rarely happens. But if they found us through our content, or they don’t have a warm connection, but they liked what they saw, they’re like, we need to make sure that they are as good as I think they are. So they’ll say; “Can you give us a couple of references people to talk to”, in my past life, and I’ve dealt with this all the way back to my first job at Dun and Bradstreet, believe it or not, they want people at even then selling DNB services, they wanted to talk with people like did their collections work. As promised you this was like, amazingly complex when it came to the sales cycle. Because even if I had people to introduce them to, it elongated the sales cycle, I made the introduction, it could be days, if not weeks before they have the conversations, and the momentum and the excitement of the ‘buy’ dies out, and so you lose a lot of opportunities, just because you lose that momentum. Now what we say is, you know, Bill, go ahead and absolutely, I’m happy to do that, go ahead and look through my recommendations on LinkedIn, and make a list of a couple people that you’d like to talk to, and I can arrange that, and when they go in, they see the 100 plus recommendations from clients and clients like them, and they can click directly through, and see where they are, and who they are. I haven’t had anyone say: “yeah, I want to talk to them”, that ends up to be enough.
Bill McCormick 12:57
Huge, it’s huge social proof. So make sure you’re connected to your clients, and if you have a problem with that, email me, I’d love to have a conversation with you. I came out of an industry where people wouldn’t do it. That was the big complaint I got all the time and it was so ludicrous, but connect with your clients because through that it’s going to open up avenues of five things that you can get from them, that you can obtain from them, which is more business from them. Internal introductions within the company, external introductions, vendor introductions, and the last one, recommendations and case studies. Anybody have anything else to add?
Brynne Tillman 13:35
I think you did a great job in rounding that out.
Bob Woods 13:39
Bill McCormick 13:40
So thanks everybody, for watching another week of Making Sales Social Live, and listening, thank you for watching, or listening. We’ll see you next time! Bye-Bye, everyone.