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The Strength of Strategic Partnerships in Network Marketing

There IS a difference! Not all referrals are created equal, sometimes the referral has the potential to become a strategic partnership, where all the rules are different and the way you respond and the relationship that is formed is worth more than only one referral. It could mean repeated referrals on an ongoing basis, and that is exactly what we re looking for, right?

You all know what a regular run-of-the-mill referral looks like, of course we are all very glad to receive it, but service it, make the sale, and like every other lead, treat it respectfully and professionally and then you are on to the next. It is a one time only type of referral. A few weeks later, there is a nice commission to follow, which we all love.

Then there is a strategic Partnership type of referral. It can probably be defined as a relationship that results in ongoing leads and is probably between members of a networking group who both reside in the same industry, although different categories. Examples of a strategic partnership would be between a realtor and a real estate attorney or a real estate attorney and a title agent.

In both of these examples, one category is benefitted by another category normally responsible for starting the sales process. In general, the realtor first makes a sale, they then refer their clients to the real estate attorney. The real estate attorney is generally responsible for ordering the title insurance report.

That makes for a great strategic partnership between the realtor and the attorney and the attorney and the title insurance...and the examples are endless..

So, maybe you've heard of the strategic partnership and we are probably in agreement on the idea that forging these types of relationships is how you win in the networking game. After all, we ALL want a referral source that just keeps on giving. So how do we make the relationships that turn strategic?

  1. One-To-One Meetings: It starts with your own networking group. After you identify your potential strategic partners within the group, you should seek to hold a one-to-one meeting with them so you can work on learning about them. The concept of a one-to-one meeting in a network group setting is not a new one. If you are the potential receiving partner in the relationship, discuss ways that you can provide excellent service and bring value to the other partner. If you are the giving partner then make an effort to learn what the other partner is looking for in terms of clients.

  2. The "Elevator Pitch": In the network setting members of any particular group are afforded the opportunity to present their elevator pitch. What you ask for though in that pitch can go a long way in earning you a shot at some strategic partnerships. If you are a real estate attorney, you may want to specifically ask for an introduction to the best realtor in a particular area. Don't discount the effect making a specific ask can deliver for you, so tailor that pitch!

  3. Be a professional: You don't earn strategic partnerships by dropping the ball, ghosting a referral or failing to be professional in your approach. Things like being on time, being responsive to your clients and dousing customers with excellent customer service all go the distance in proving your worth to a prospective strategic partnership. Do the opposite and you will probably fail to earn that relationship and the sales that go along with it.

  4. Be A Resource: Becoming a valuable resource for things other than receiving and servicing the referral. If you are the real estate attorney and the realtor is the referring partner, refer other real estate professionals to the realtor that will help make their lives easier and provide them with further partnerships. It is not all about giving leads that result in sales, sometimes you can provide another kind of help. Find out what your partner needs and find ways to give it to them.

Forming strategic partnerships with people in a networking setting either in your primary group or outside of it can be the difference needed to win at networking. Your return on investment will always be vastly effected by succeeding in this networking skill.

To learn more about strategic partnerships please listen to The UTA Podcast - Episode 2 - Strategic Partnerships from United Tips of America


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