Episode 76: Bob Burg – Building “Know, Like, and Trust” Relationships
Our hosts Brynne Tillman and Bob Woods are graced with the presence of Bob Burg, the bestselling co-author of The Go-Giver, who shares the value of creating “know, like, trust” relationships with your prospects.
Listen as they explore what it means to cultivate relationships on social media platforms and how it can happen quickly if the timing is right, and as long as you approach it with a long-term perspective.
Discover the power of becoming a “go-giver” and what benefits you can reap from shifting your focus from getting to giving, by taking the spotlight away from yourself, placing it on the other person, and providing them with immense value.
Check out Bob’s website at burg.com.
Bob Burg 00:00
Utilizing social media and all the online platforms, whatever it happens to be to cultivate great relationships where you know, you’re able to create that environment where you can provide exceptional value to others and in return, you’re going to do very well as a result. You know, John David Mann, my awesome co-author of the Go-Giver series, we always say that money is simply an echo of value. It’s the thunder to value lightning.
Bob Woods 00:28
Welcome to the Making Sales Social Podcast! Featuring the top voices in sales and marketing. Join hosts Brynne Tillman and Bill McCormick as they discussed the best tips and strategies they are teaching their clients so you can leverage them for your own virtual and social selling. You can also listen to us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and Google Play. Here are your hosts Brynne Tillman Bill McCormick.
Bill McCormick 01:06
Welcome to Making Sales Social! I’m Bill McCormick.
Brynne Tillman 01:09
I’m Brynne Tillman.
Bill McCormick 01:10
So Brynne I know you’re excited to tell everyone who’s joining us today.
Brynne Tillman 01:14
This is like in the green room and the discussion before we talked a little bit about bucket list. This has got to be like in my top 10 professional bucket list of all time. When I started my career in sales, there were a few books that transformed the way I thought of things. One of them, which we’ll talk about in a second, was written by this guest that we have today, that not only transformed the way I did business, but the way that we do business in Social Sales Link as well.
So Bob Burg is our guest who’s joining us. He wrote, and everyone knows him from the most famous sales book, I think probably in the world, the Go-Giver, which is more than a sales book now, they have a leadership volume and lots of other things, but the Go-Giver, first in the way that influenced us is it was really about how these successful people had in their hearts all they wanted to do was help someone else become successful. That was one of my major takeaways.
How each of those givers were detached from what it meant to them but attached from how they could help someone else. Number two, and I know this is a really long intro but I’ve been working on this right, Endless Referrals, which transformed the way I thought about everything in sales. You know, I started off in an inbound call center, and then went into cold calling and when I read Endless Referrals, and I recognized that it was about relationships, and leveraging your contacts to grow your business, everything changed in my world.
And so I hope that we’ll talk about this. Last thing before I introduce Bob, the most famous quote in sales, probably I would I mean, I would say the most famous quote we hear over and over and over again and we use over and over again is, “All things being equal. People do business with people they know, like and trust.” And that my friends, is a quote from Bob Burg.
Bob, welcome to Making Sales Social! Share a little bit about yourself.
Bob Burg 03:24
Brynne, Bill, good morning! Great to be with you and gosh there’s nothing more to share about myself! That was so very kind of you what a wonderful introduction. And you know, the two of you do such a fantastic job. It’s just a pleasure to be on here with all of you.
Brynne Tillman 03:39
Well, thank you. We’re so excited. So Bill asks, everyone the first question.
Bill McCormick 03:44
So Bob, thank you. It is great to have you here. So we asked every guest the same question to start out. What does making sales social mean to you?
Bob Burg 03:53
Well, I think it’s really utilizing social media and all the online platforms, whatever it happens to be to cultivate great relationships where you’re able to create that environment where you can provide exceptional value to others and in return, you’re going to do very well as a result. You know, John David Mann, my awesome co-author of the Go-Giver series, we always say that money is simply an echo of value. It’s the thunder to value’ s lightning.
And, you know, Brynne, as you mentioned, you know, all things being equal, people will do business with and refer business to those people they know, like, and trust. So the key is that it’s not that they’ll do business with and refer business to those computers, they know, like, and trust, but to those human beings who just happen to be utilizing the computer in front of them as a way to connect and create those know, like, and trust relationships.
Brynne Tillman 04:51
That’s amazing. So that quote, along with a lot of the learnings from Endless Referrals has such an impact, I can’t even begin to tell you, like, I mean, you know, I shouldn’t even say because you know, the impact I’m sure that you’ve had. And in everything we teach, we quote this, because I think it’s absolutely vital that people understand how critical that is.
In social selling, we have a little precursor because one of the things we talk about is in the traditional sales world, you get to know someone by shaking their hand, by meeting them face to face, by going to a chamber of commerce meeting, right? Getting to know someone in the physical world, was pretty easy and pretty frequent. In the digital world, people struggle with the getting to know and so we have this precursor that we talked about, which is “Attract, teach and engage.” That’s what gets people to know, in the digital world. So I’d love to hear a little bit about the know, like, and trust from you and how you see that playing in the social world in the digital world.
Bob Burg 06:08
Well, I mean, I think LinkedIn, which you know, you are the expert in LinkedIn, and so you know that there are ways to be able to connect with people. And one of the things I love that social media has done regardless of which platform it is, is it’s allowed us to meet people, we otherwise never would have had the opportunity to meet, okay? Then that relationship can be built, and it can be built powerfully. And so I think, you know when we let’s say, for instance, we reach out to someone for whatever reason, okay, and I’m not talking about Inbound here, which is great to put out information that attracts, of course, absolutely, that’s something we do all the time but just if if you are reaching out to someone, how would you do that? Well, it could be a nice comment on their post, it could be sharing their post with a comment before that, telling, you know, sharing the value from that quote, and how impressed you are with this person and what they’ve done and with the principles that they take, you know, what have you. It could be when somebody comments on somebody else’s post, to engage with that person, and do so in a very edifying way and do so in a way that adds value to the conversation.
It’s also moving it offline, it’s, you know, someone says something very nice about something you’ve posted, send a personalized handwritten note to that person through this thing called the mail and it’s amazing because you’re the only one probably who has done that and they get a really nice note from you, and your personalized note card that says, “Hey, just wanted to thank you so much for that kind, you know, share or that kind quote on my post. Please know how much that meant to me, Best regards…” And then put it in number 10 envelope or whatever envelope and put a regular stamp on it and send that out. Wow! (Brynne: Love that.) Talk about connecting with someone. But you know, these are just some of the things we can do. You know, it’s making sure that when we connect with someone on LinkedIn, and we send an invite that we know a little bit about them first, and we’re able to genuinely and authentically comment about something that we know is of interest to them.
So there’s all these things we can do to you know, to reach out in a way that communicates value, right from the start.
Brynne Tillman 08:28
That’s awesome. And that’s building that “know, like, and trust,” right? Just from that communication digitally. Go ahead, Bill.
Bill McCormick 08:35
Well, I was gonna say, and Bob, in your definition, you know, saying what’s making sales social mean to you? You use the word “cultivate,” and which I immediately go to farming, and you know, the farmer doesn’t go put the seed in the soil and come back the next day, and look for the harvest, right?
It takes time, and it has to be watered, and it has to be fertilized in it. And then the sun has do its thing. And I think in today’s age, what we’re seeing are so many people that are trying to cultivate a relationship like that, and they want that easy button. So I think it’s important to point out that these things take time that we have to have a conversation that that getting to know part of the “know, like and trust” is would you say, and this is my question, do you think that that’s where the most effort goes into is in that know part? Because that kind is the first domino that knocks over the other two of like and trust.
Bob Burg 09:33
I think you make a great point there that you know, the know certainly sets up for the like and trust. And so while I’ve never really thought of it before as almost like in the rocket ship, you know, it’s that first part that gets it right and after that, it’s the momentum.
So I mean, I think it is the know part that certainly does come first and then that know turns into like and the like turns into trust. But yeah, I mean, I think you have a very valid point that you know, get to have people know you and know them. And you’re going to, again, create that context for a lot of the like and trust to, you know, to follow very closely behind.
The other thing too is this, you know because you’re right when you approach in a way that you’re cultivating, okay, like a farmer that is going to result in the most really positive, great beneficial relationships but here’s the thing. Can it take time? Sure. but does it ever happen quickly?
It does, when the timing just happens to be right but the thing is, approach it as you said, approach it long term. Yeah, I remember, was about 10 years old once. And I went bowling with a guy who was I think he was about 16 or so, he was the boyfriend of my babysitter as I recall, the name was Greg and this guy was really good. Especially when you look back, I thought he was like this much older guy but he was actually 16, you know, so he was just a kid himself and he was getting strike after strike after strike.
And I remember, I asked, “Greg, you are awesome!” And he said, “thanks.” And I said, “You get like all these strikes?” He said, “Yeah!” And I said, “You must really practice getting those strikes.” He said, “No, no, I never practice getting strikes.” “So what do you mean?” He said, “No, I practice mastering the spares.” He said, “Master the spares, and the strikes will come by themselves.”
(Brynne: Wow! I love that!) And that’s a pretty good Zen wisdom for a 16-year-old, right? (Brynne: That’s amazing) But I think it’s the same. Yeah, I think it’s the same with Bill’s point, you know, it’s like, build for the long-term, create, cultivate, nurture, right?
But when it’s supposed to happen, quickly, the strikes will come, It just might be that you meet someone who at that moment has a good condition for you, or has something that they need or something, you know what I’m saying? So absolutely.
Brynne Tillman 11:42
It’s interesting, our definition of social selling is about building relationships, providing real value, and being a resource, the sales will come when the time is right. (Bob: Wow, I love that.) That’s actually our definition of social selling. (Bob: Great definition.) Thank you, we appreciate that very much. So we couldn’t be more aligned, which I know because so much of where I am today, has been molded from your teaching so (Bob: Wow.) the fact that we’re aligned doesn’t surprise me too much…
Bob Burg 12:16
Aww.. that means a lot to me to know that. Thank you.
Brynne Tillman 12:18
…in that way. So absolutely love that. You know, one of the things that we teach, probably, that has the highest level of success in the shortest amount of time is using LinkedIn, and your clients and your referral partners to get introductions into stakeholders also, you know, very much inspired by Endless Referrals. So we take a proactive approach to this. So I’ll just throw this out and then I’d love to hear your thoughts around it, where instead of just saying to our clients who like yourself could use our products and services the way you have, we approach it from, “I hope you don’t mind but I noticed you’re connected to quite a few people that I’d love to get in front of, can I run these names by you and get your thoughts?”
So, you know, and what we’re doing is we’re searching their connections on LinkedIn and building a list that (Bob: Yeah.) we bring to them. What are your thoughts around doing that?
Bob Burg 13:16
I like it because you know, there are two different types of referrals, there’s, well, there’s a number of different types, but two, in this case, are what we call active-passive, and that is when you ask for referrals, you sort of help them to come up with names.
So in other words, that might be you know, is there someone who’s a colleague of yours, and there’s so and so, so and so? Or because again, it’s a small group of people, or is there someone you know, who knows a person who plays golf? Who do you play golf with? And they give you, you know, who do you play in a regular foursome with? Then they give you three names, Well, boom! It’s very easy to, you know, to come up, or are you a member of any committee? Well, you know, they are, they’re like it, so I know you’re a member of the so and so committee, they’re on the board of directors, how many people serve on the board with you? “well there’s myself and five others” well, you know, from those five, Who do you you know, which ones do you feel would be — so that’s active-passive, you’re actively asking, but it’s passive in terms of they’re the ones who are going to name the, you know, the names that they would provide.
Now another way to do it is active-active and that is to actually know in advance who you would like to meet and ask if they would be comfortable making an introduction. What I like to do is always frame it in such a way that they know that there’s no pressure there’s no obligation and you know, I often say you know only if you would feel comfortable doing this if you don’t you know if you don’t feel there would be an issue in terms of your relationship with that person. You know, (Brynne: Right) if you feel comfortable with this, you know, I would love an introduction, you know, what have you.
And I find when we do it this way, when we give someone the out or back door, they feel a lot more comfortable because first, autonomy is a very, very important piece. Will don’t want to feel like they’re cornered into doing something, but it’s their choice. Also, they then understand that you respect the process and that you’re not going to make that other person in any way fit, and then it’s going to be a bad reflection on them.
Brynne Tillman 15:15
That brings me so much joy and one of the things that we do is say to them, “Hey, I noticed you’re connected to quite a few people, can I run these names by you?” We’re not saying can you introduce me to these people? I’d love your insights around these folks.
And that naturally turns into a conversation around, you know, is this someone you know, they have, “Oh, they we work together for 25 years, he’s fabulous,” you can say, “Would you be open to making an introduction? Or would it make sense for me to meet them?”
Bob Burg 15:48
Any of those words are great outwards. Or backdoor wards and you know, again, the bigger the outward backdoor we give someone to take, the less they’ll feel the need to take it. So we don’t do the out so that they will take it although they will, if they feel they should, (Brynne: Which…) only right. Okay, but no, we give them the outdoor backdoor so that they’ll feel so comfortable with us and the process that they won’t feel the need to.
Brynne Tillman 16:12
And that builds the like and trust even more, right?
Bob Burg 16:17
Absolutely. And then you know, of course, when they do refer you some people to send a personalized handwritten note. Again, just thanking them, letting them know that anyone they refer to you will be treated with the utmost professionalism, and so forth, and so on. And, you know, when it does turn into a sale, let’s say down the road, that you make sure that you send another note, and so forth. And I think when we do that, and we do these things consistently, that’s when these know, like, and trust relationships really become solidified.
Brynne Tillman 16:46
I love that one of the things and I love the note, I love getting a note but because we teach digital, we say send a personal video.
Bob Burg 16:53
Well, that’s fine, too. Yeah. (Brynne: Right.) And that’s great.
Brynne Tillman 16:57
But it’s fun, because I do. I have like my notes. I don’t throw out my notes. (Bob: No? People keep them, I’m sure.) Yeah, so I love that too but we often, do you feel like a personalized video thanking them could have almost that same impact?
Bob Burg 17:11
I think different people enjoy different things and you know, and I don’t think it’s an “either or,” I think it’s “and,” and “one or the other.” Or you could do both, you know, or what have you but, you know, certainly it’s a video is always, you know, a nice thing to receive. I tend to might, you know, my feeling is there’s just, you know, there, I get more comments about personalized notes (Brynne: Yeah.) than, you know, than anything else, because I think again, because we can, you know, utilize technology, more people do that, as opposed to the very few handwritten personalized notes someone gets again, though, I don’t think it’s an either or, I think it’s an and.
Bill McCormick 17:50
That becomes a differentiator really helps you stand out and it’s not something I mean, think about it. How many personal notes do people get most of the time? The snail mail, physical mail is filled with a few things, junk mail and bill. Not this kind of Bill, but you know. (Bob: Right. Not the good kind of bill. Right?) (Brynne: Yeah, I love that. That’s [inaudible].) Are you gonna bring up permission to name drop, Brynne?
Brynne Tillman 18:16
I thought about it. Okay. So one of the areas, let’s say we have a list of 18 or 20 names, and now our client has identified six people on that list that they think we should meet, especially if it’s a client, it’s a referral partner, and you’re making referrals for one another, it’s not as difficult to put someone out asking for that introduction, you’re making them for them as well. But with a client, six names asking you to refer, that’s a lot of work on their part.
So a lot of times, we might say, “So of the six, is there anyone on this list you’d feel comfortable introducing me to?” And maybe it’s one or two, and now we have four more. So you know, asking for all six, I think is too much. So one of the things that we will say at that point is, “You know, I really appreciate your insights. I appreciate the introduction to those two people.
When I reach out to these other four, is it okay, that I mentioned that you’re my happy client, and you thought I should introduce myself that I might be able to bring value to them as well?”
And, you know, I would say, I’m going to say 100% of the time they say sure at that point because we’ve had a whole conversation. And when we reach out, I’ll start with “Bob, Bill McCormick and I were chatting the other day, your name came up in our conversation, and he thought I should reach out and introduce myself. I’ve worked with him for the last two years on this and this. If you’re open, let’s connect,” and then convert that into a conversation that we’re assuming because, you know, Bill said we should chat. What are your thoughts on that?
Bob Burg 19:50
Oh, well, I like it. It’s and I think that the person referring you probably expects that you would use their name anyway because They wouldn’t have referred you if they didn’t but I think it’s always nice to ask them. And then yes, I think it always is to drop the name. And that’s, you know, it’s a very similar open to when people receive referrals, and then they’re calling the person on the phone and they say, “You know, my name is so and so we’ve never met, but I believe you know Janet Thompson?”
“Oh, yeah, great. Yeah. How was she?”
“Oh, great, Becky, I was just with her the other day, or just speaking with her the other day, and your name came up in conversation.”
“Oh, really? How?”
“Well, Janet is a very valued client of mine, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…”
And then you go to the rest. So sure, absolutely. I love it.
Bill McCormick 20:37
Yeah, well, what we found with permission to named drop, you know, there are certain people that are networkers or I came out of a BNI background, there are people that, you know, if you’ve asked for a referral, and they say they’re going to make the introduction, it’s done.
And then there are other people that they say, they’re going to do it, and it’s not gonna happen, you just know it, they’re just not either they’re too busy, or they’re not familiar and what Brynne’s speaking specifically, a lot of times, clients, they just don’t know how to do it.
And so what we found is permission to name drop, we kind of keep control of the referral. And we can then approach it on our terms, yet, we still have that trust, and we’re still coming in at that higher level of credibility. So I think for, for our listeners, that permission to namedrop is a great way if you’re not familiar, or you’re not comfortable asking people to make introductions, but to still be able to do it.
Bob Burg 21:33
Well, you know, it’s a great point, I’m often asked by people, you know, “Bob, when people give you referrals, would you rather them call the prospect? Or would you rather, you know, call or contact them yourself?” And I say, this is one of the few times where I will provide an absolute definite answer and that answer is, it depends.
(Brynne: I love that)
(Bill: I was hoping that’s what you’re doing, I was getting worried)
And really, here’s the thing, all things being equal, I would actually rather make the call. Because while our customer knows enough to buy the product from us, or to be comfortable with us, they don’t know how to sell it.
So sometimes, you know, when they make the introduction, and they mean so well, right, and they say, “Hey, you know, this person I want to have call you or what have you, I want to set you up with and introduced to this person, they have a great book” and person says, “Well, you know I’ve heard that blah, blah, blah…” and they come up with an objection. Okay, well, this person, this great referral source, they don’t know how to answer that objection, right. So the person says, “Well, okay, I’ll let you know, if I want it.” and then it’s over. If you call, now you’re in the position to be able to handle that. Now, the one time though, that I do like that other person to call the referral source to make the contact is if they just happened to be such a center of influence such a well respected person, right? And when they call someone or contact someone to say, there’s someone I want you to meet, nothing more needs to be said. Yeah, you know, when you’ve got someone like that, sure, all day, I would love them to make the call but really otherwise, yeah, I agree with the both of you, I want to be, you know, sort of in control of the process, if you will.
Brynne Tillman 23:18
I love that. I love that. So I have one last question that I want to ask before we start to kind of bring this into a close. What is your advice to someone who is newer on social digital, and they want to be a go-giver. What would you recommend that either the mindset or the activities that they can do to truly come from a go-giver heart?
Bob Burg 23:46
Well, if we define the term “go-giver,” it’s simply someone who understands that shifting your focus and this is really the key where it begins. Shifting your focus from getting to giving, and when we say giving in this context, we simply mean constantly and consistently providing immense value to others. Understanding that doing so is not only a more pleasant way of conducting business, it’s the most financially profitable way as well.
And by the way, not for any way out there “woo woo magical mystical reasons.” No, not at all. It’s actually very logical, it’s very rational. When you’re that person who can take your focus off of yourself, and place it on that other person, place it on making their lives better, place it on solving their challenges, place it on discovering what they want, what they need, what they desire. When you’re that person with an absolute laser focus on bringing them closer to happiness. People feel good about you. They want to get to know you. They like you, they trust you. They want to do business with you. They want to tell others about you. They want to be your personal walking ambassador.
So what I would say to a person is if that sounds like something that would be good for your business, well, then you understand that this is where you want to go, that’s the direction you want to go. There’s absolutely nothing self-sacrificial about being a go-giver, okay? It’s actually you know, again, the most self-interested way you could do business is to take your focus off of yourself, and place it on bringing immense value to the other person.
Remember, and I used to say this in every sales conference where I spoke, nobody’s gonna buy from you, because you have a quota to meet. (Brynne: Oh, I love that) right, they’re not going to buy from you because you need the money and they’re not even going to buy from you because you’re a really nice person, they’re going to buy from you because they believe that they will be better off by doing so than by not doing so. So if you really want to create what we call that benevolent context for success, then take your focus off yourself and place it on them.
Brynne Tillman 26:06
I love that. One of our major, yeah, Bill’s like, mic drop, right? One of the things that we talk about all the time is detach from what your prospect is worth to you, and attach to what you are worth to that prospect. I think again, another alignment. You are brilliant. (Bob: Awww.)
Bill McCormick 26:28
I’ve got a whole page of notes. I’m gonna go back… I’m lucky because I get access to recording, I’m gonna go back and keep watching this, Bob. (Bob: Thank you so much)
But Bob, thank you, so good, we could have gone for another half-hour, but we’re running out of time. So if you could just leave everyone with some information, how they can connect with you, stay in touch with you and find you.
Bob Burg 26:49
Sure my website is burg.com where you can scroll down and get the chapter or excerpt of any of the books to see if you like them before clicking through. If you choose to do so we also have our Go-Giver success Alliance. So when you scroll down to what looks like Rachel’s famous coffee shop, you can click on that and see if that’s something you’d find of interest as well.
Hey, Bill and Brynne just absolutely fantastic to be with you all and I just, you know, thank you so much. What an honor.
Brynne Tillman 27:22
The honor is ours. This is amazing. I mean, my heart’s racing. I’m so excited.
Bill McCormick 27:28
Oh, so, so good. So thank you all for listening. We’ll put all that contact information in the show notes and until we’re with you next time, don’t forget this week as you’re out and about, make your sales social. Bye. Bye, everyone. (Brynne: Bye, guys.)
Bob Woods 27:42
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