Sales Prospecting

Never Ask for Referrals This Way

In today's never-ever post, Joanne Black, author of No More Cold Calling, shares a critical mistake that salespeople make when asking for referrals. And, as the Queen of Referral Selling, she shares what does work too.


Salespeople should never ask, “If you know anyone who could benefit from my services, please let them know.”

It seems like a simple request for a referral, but it gets us nowhere—except to say we’ve checked “asking for referrals” off of our list. Also, asking for an introduction to "anyone" is far too broad a description for anyone to think of anyone.
This phrase bumps up against the discomfort most people feel in asking for a referral introduction. For some it feels pushy, salesy, and too much “in your face.” Mostly, salespeople are afraid that people might say no. So, instead of asking straight-up with confidence, they ask in a lame way and--not surprisingly--get nothing in return.
Much better to ask, “Who are one or two people you know that I should meet?” Without an introduction from a Referral Source, you are making cold calls with a dismal rate of return. Ask for a referral introduction to your ideal client and boost your close rate to more than 50 percent!"

Your Turn? Share your Never-Ever Story in the comments section of my blog.


To learn more about how to build your business through referrals, visit 1 No More Cold Calling

After a successful career in the sales world, writing five books, and speaking internationally, Jill is now tackling an even bigger challenge. She's focused on bringing the "millions in the middle" together to solve some of the biggest issues facing our country and the world. Jill truly believes so much more is possible if we can work together.