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Creating A Referral Network To Grow Your Business

As a business owner one strategy to consider in growing your business is to create a business referral network with other companies that service your local markets. This network can be built with local business leaders in your area. Most referral networks will include a handful of companies that do not directly compete, but complement one another. If you create the right referral network then you won’t have to pay out referral fees to companies that send you a lead because the payment you’ll provide will be the next new lead you send them. This type of customer sharing can be very valuable as long as everyone involved participants and helps feed the network by sending new leads to one another. When one company only accepts leads and doesn’t add new customers to the pool, it will fall apart.

Example of Business Referral Networks

An example of a typical business referral network that most small business owners have seen in action is the relationships that are often developed between business lawyers and CPAs. While both service the same set of customers they don’t provide the same type of service and they don’t make referral revenue from making introductions. Another form of a business referral network that is very successful is in the home construction and repair industry such as plumbers, electricians, general contractors etc. When on the job they often see problems that need attention but are outside the scope of the service they provide, therefore they can refer the business to their network of home construction professionals who can service the needs of the customer.

Build a Business Ecosystem

It is important as a small business owner that you attend business functions that are both focused on your industry as well as business practices in general. These types of networking opportunities will allow you to meet other professionals that may have customers in need of your product or service. While it can take some time to develop the types of relationships needed to receive referrals from a business network, the value of the leads over the course of several years will be well worth the time and energy you’ll invest. One of the best strategies for getting referrals from a business network is to make connections and start feeding it with new leads.

While you may not get any new business immediately, if you represent yourself as someone who can deliver quality leads, eventually you’ll be on the receiving end. If no business comes through from a specific contact then move on and start sharing leads elsewhere. Over time you’ll develop a referral network that is reliable and committed to helping everyone grow their business.

Put in the time to build a business referral network with the right types of businesses and you will reap the rewards for a long time to come. Every business will have to evaluate the right types of connections that make sense for their company, therefore all business referral networks will not look the same, but the core idea is the same. A group of business owners committed to supporting each other and sharing quality leads.

New Business Opportunities – Are They Right for You?

Have you been looking into home-based business opportunities? With many new business opportunities popping up every day, you may wonder which are here to stay and which should be avoided. Home utilities, cell phones and tools are three multi-level marketing opportunities currently available that you may like to try. Can you actually make money from a business such as this? Before you go signing up for what is being labeled a unique business opportunity, there are certain things you should take into account to determine if this is the right course of action for you.

What is the success rate of this particular opportunity? Did you know that approximately 50% of all representatives who sign up for an opportunity drop out within a year? After a five year period, 90% are no longer selling the products and services and, within ten years, this figure goes up to 95%. Small businesses, in contrast, tend to make it longer. According to the SBA, 44% of small businesses are still in operation after 4 years and 31% after seven years.

When looking into these new business opportunities, do your research. Learn who your upline will be. Don’t go up one level; go all the way to the top. Do you trust these people and how much information are they willing to share with you? If you were opening a business with a partner, you would investigate him or her. Do the same here with your upline.

Once you are familiar with your upline, look into the products and services you will be selling. Do they have a good track record? Learn your competition. Many people think it is easy to make a sale, but this isn’t always the case. You have to love your product if you want to convince others they will love it too. Make use of the products yourself so you learn the good points and the bad about each one. If the products are good and needed by consumers, you should be able to recoup your investment in a very short period of time.

Were you pressured to join this company? A good representative won’t pressure others to sign up. Rather, he or she will look for people who love the products and/or services and recommend the business opportunity. If someone is giving you a hard sale to get you to sign up, you should keep looking for something that is a better match for you.

Know what you are looking for from the business opportunity. Do you want to bring in some extra cash or want to quit your regular job? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, keep looking. If you think the products and services are the best available and want to share them with others, you are ready to start with the business. This one thing alone does more to guarantee success than anything else.

Business Owners Have a LIFE Including a BACK History

Business Owners are real people. They put their pants on one leg at a time just like the rest of us. Most business owners eat, sleep, work hard and think about their business 24/7, including how to be an exceptional employer to their employees.

As expected, hourly or salaried employees put in their usual 8 hour day and primarily focus on their work at hand Vs the full spectrum of the business. Nothing unusual taking place as we see this as SOP [Standard Operating Procedure] running any business.

In the corner office, where the owner or boss resides, there’s constant in and out flow, workers seeking confirmation or direction. Some employees are trying to drop the “monkey” and get rid of their problem. Not very smart for long-term employment.

Assuming the company has been around the block, been through a few trials and tribulations, it’s only fitting that the boss gets the corner office. However, business growth usually means more employees, challenges, taxes, regulations, frustrations, too.

Never believe that any business, big or small, is without the usual “hick-ups”. Our newspapers are filled daily with the good, the bad, claims of discrimination, sexual harassment, drugs in the workplace, accidents, IRS challenges as well as business failures.

Government regulations, paperwork, inspectors, reports, are all part of the process of keeping jobs intact. Hiring, discipline, firings are all part of your day in HR. If you’re into manufacturing it means dealing with vendors, work in process, supplies, equipment as well as truckers, lost freight, etc. The list is unending as the business tries to increase it’s value.

Payrolls are constant with little or no flexibility. Cash flow concerns with receivables, payables, collections, customer relations, credit lines allowed, vendors, discounts earned, contracts, salespeople, banking and more.

At issue for the business owner are tax cuts or increases that will impact the future growth of his/her business. Politicians seem more concerned with getting re-elected than finding better ways to manage the U.S. economy, getting people to work, managing the huge debt.

Employees need to understand and remember… IF there are NO jobs, then NO income taxes are flowing into Washington. Government Leadership is critical and it’s imperative that all of us take personal responsibility to VOTE.

To begin, ask yourself, who understands the economics of business ownership? Whose policies will SAVE your job? Answer those questions before you place your vote. The media wants to tell you “It’s the economy Stupid” but YOU know better.

Your employer, BIG or small, cannot pay YOU top wages and benefits while profits are siphoned off through high taxes. These are difficult decisions that have to be made before business owners have the confidence to spend and grow the business.

An old saying is… “there’s NO free lunch!” and that means your employer has to have dependable profits before the U.S. economy can improve long-term. Confidence in our LEADERSHIP is priority #1 to increase employment and get America back to work.