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Savvy referral relationships ‘essential’ to lead generation

by Francesca Krakue5 minute read

The leader of a referral partnership company has shared key advice on how brokers can get the most out of thoughtful and meaningful professional relationships.

Speaking to The Adviser, PartnerOne director David Hayward highlighted that placing an emphasis on building strategic professional relationships is “essential” to quality lead generation.

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“The word of mouth through connection of clients is important, and that’s based on the service proposition that the brokers will provide,” he said.

“But the source of business being from a direct referral from a business partner is critical, because they're the ones who will say, ‘Look I've got someone I know who can assist you with your situation,’ so it's a warm referral, it's not a cold referral, it's based on referred trust.”

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According to Mr Hayward, the best sort of referral relationships come about through aligning your source of business to the type of client you want to target, rather than taking a general approach.

“Aligning your source of business to the type of client you want to target is critical,” he said. “So, for example, if a mortgage broker wants to specialise in SMSFs, he would align himself to an accounting firm that actually specialises in SMSFs, and then he becomes the expert in that particular space.”

“Really specifically drill down to who your ideal customer is, and who is going to be linked in to your ideal customer, so really try to be quite direct about the type of business you want and how you're going to find them,” he said. “Link in specifically with those sources for the types of clients you're looking for.”

My Hayward explained that this approach typically helps to create a “top of mind” awareness for referrers, who think of you first when they come across the type of customer that might need your particular type of service.

Further, he highlighted that the conversion ratio of such leads is much higher than standard leads, such as those generated through for a website.

“Typically, you'll find that [the conversion rate] for lead generation from a trusted partner is around about 80 to 90 per cent because of that referred trust,” he said.

“That’s how it can help the brokers because what it’s actually doing is lessening their workload. It's like having sales people out in the marketplace promoting their services to clients that fit their needs, so it's taking some of the work out from the broker's perspective on prospecting.”

PartnerOne connects a range of professionals, including real estate agents, accountants and financial planners, and other trusted advisers that can refer to each other and share opportunities. The company is currently searching for mortgage partners to add value to their clients.

[Related: Brokers must find their ‘niche’, says marketing guru]

Savvy referral relationships ‘essential’ to lead generation
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