The “T.I.R” is a relay race run from Gonzales, Texas to the San Jacinto Monument. It traces the path Sam Houston took with his Texas Army to find and destroy Santa Ana’s Mexican Army. It’s a 208 mile relay race run with up to 12 team members, and two vans. Six runners to a van and, van number 1 is charged with running all the first legs while van 2 goes up ahead several hours and rests and waits. Once van number on reaches the exchange point, van 2 leap frogs ahead to eat and rest for their next leg and this continues 24 hours a day from Saturday morning until Sunday evening. It is challenging on MANY levels, not enough time to recover, small spaces on the van, lack of good sleep, and honestly after awhile the van begins to smell horrible. Having said that, I love challenges, especially ones like this! The “T.I.R.” is the hardest, sweatiest, lack of sleep, smelliest, and the most fun race I’ve ever run! But only because I’ve built “world class” teams to run it with. We are currently in training and logistical planning for this endeavor and beginning to build up for the race. We’ve selected team mates specifically for this race and that means some of my good friends did not get invited. I wanted 12 specific people for this race. Let me ask you something do you race out to meet your business obligations with no plan? Likely not, you have a plan, goals, and ways to measure your success. If you plan to be engaged in Referral Marketing as an integral piece of your business strategy, then not everyone needs to be on your team. What? Bertrand what did you just say? You heard correctly…I’m saying you need to go about the building of your network carefully, systematically, and intentionally! This means every person who is nice to you and whom you “hit it off” with does not automatically make it on the squad. I know this seems to fly in the face of everything you have been taught , and probably been doing in terms of Networking. Remember networking is not the same as referral marketing. Here is the definition of Networking; “The process of developing and activating your relationships to increase your business, enhance your knowledge, expand your sphere of influence, or serve the community.” So it is a broad based activity that involves branding yourself. Networking reaches many people and serves to get your name, face, logo, product and message out in the market place. It’s all right and necessary to engage in Networking, just understand it does not have the same sharp edged goal as referral marketing.
Referral Marketing involves developing a team of people who are willing to “execute systems built into their weekly activities that support the growth of your business!” That statement should make my earlier statement about building your network carefully more clear for you. I actually think you should “audition” your network partners! With Referral Marketing you are building a more intimate team of people who need to meet at least 6 criteria; 1) They must serve your target market and have access to them 2) They must be willing to be trained to execute referrals on your behalf 3) They must be able to execute referrals on your behalf 4) They must have the resources to be involved in networking efforts 5) They must make good referrals for your network and 6) You must be able to develop a rewarding personal relationship with them! They must qualify on all 6 in order to be considered! Does that seem too harsh? Well let me ask you this…How serious are you about getting your business built? Growing a business is a great challenge, times will be tough, you will get tired. Who do you want around you? Then get serious about building and training your world class team!
About Our Show Advisor: Bertrand McHenry spent 22 years developing his skills in outside sales. Starting out in the cell phone business, then to Pitney Bowes, Dictaphone Division, and finally in Medical Diagnostic Equipment Sales. His expertise became finding, training, and developing dynamic and record setting sales teams. A number of years ago he was introduced to the concept of “Referral Marketing” as a strategy for growing his business. It worked and he was hooked! At a conference Bertrand was presented with the Referral Institute opportunity and “I was intrigued so I began researching the company and its curriculum. It is actually the only company teaching Referral Marketing as a strategy to business owners and entrepreneurs around the world…so it didn’t take me long.” These days Bertrand is doing what he loves and what he does best…teach and train! “There is a lot of misunderstanding around the words “networking” and “referral marketing”. People make a lot of assumptions about those two words, and most of those assumptions are wrong! I can tell you without a doubt that Referral Marketing is the most powerful form of marketing there is. If we structure a referral marketing strategy and follow through week after week and just use the V.C.P relationship model…we can actually predict our income 6, 9, even 12 months out!” Most recently he has been quoted on yahoofinance.com, maimiherald.com, morningstar.com and USA Today featured him in an article on today’s economy calling him a “Trendsetter in the New Economy!” He is also a contributing author on Brian Tracy’s newest book titled “The Only Business Book You’ll Ever Need to Buy” due out in February 2012 Bertrand also hosted a radio show “Business Builders Radio” on CBS radio, Talk 650 AM. The radio show was dedicated to teaching the concepts of referral marketing and helping as many business owners as possible. Bertrand is fond of saying: “I love to teach business owners to Work Less, Play More, Make More Money, and Create Referrals for Life!”