Building a Referral Network

The most common business development question for professional service firm providers…  “How do I get started?”  A common mistake is to start attending networking events.  Another is to shell out money to sponsor industry conferences where you pay a sponsorship fee to receive general branding benefits like having your logo displayed.

Instead, I would focus on building your personal referral network.

Referrals convert more than 70% of the time and are the single most effective form of professional services business development.  However, don’t go to a contact and say, “Hey, do you have some business for me?”  Think reciprocal referrals.  You might say that you are building your ecosystem of referrals and would like to know if they want to participate.   Accountants, lawyers and consultants are great places to start.  Here’s a link to a best lawyers database.  Private equity and venture capital firms may be a great referral lead generator as well.  Below is a searchable database.


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