For years I have endorsed social media as a tool that furthers relationships, makes them deeper, and results in more referrals.  Today is no different, however, there is a seedy side to social media that can result in less referrals. 

I’m going to break down the good and bad regarding social media as it pertains to referrals.

Connecting With Business Contacts on Social Media:

  • Good: Relationships are built on Trust, so are referrals. If we want more referrals we should connect on social media so that we can build trust! Being connected means that we can see more of what our connections are up to and believe in.
  • Bad: With connecting comes more information. Should you post negative things on social, that will transfer over to your connections and may limit your ability to get more referrals in the future from them because they may not like something you said

Being Recommended on Social

  • Good: Oftentimes, at least 3 times per week, I see posts from other people looking to get recommendations on specific services that they are interested in.  Their contacts will tag others that do that service, resulting in the connection. This tag could bring more sales and new customers into your business. After all it’s word of mouth (or word of keystrokes).
  • Bad: These aren’t really referrals. They are leads at best. I see so many posts that never result in business…you know how I know? Because they will make the same post again next year. I recently saw someone request local fence companies. When others tagged people, one fence company owner said “I talked to you last year when you were looking for the fence, are you ready to move forward?”  People aren’t always serious when they are posting on social media for other services. Sadly, it’s a place where people can hide behind the keyboard if they choose to.

Politics on Social

  • Good: Politics are a very polarizing topic, and if you are talking about this subject on social media, sometimes people will comment, and you’ll know clearly who is on the same political side as you are.
  • Bad: It’s likely that there are many people just seeing the political posts, and choosing to work with others who aren’t posting as much, however these people won’t tell you. In the social media world, I refer to folks that see posts but don’t interact with them “lurkers”. That’s not a negative term by any means, it’s just an adjective. The reason I know they exist is because at in person events they will mention things that you posted but that they never commented on.  Therefore, if they don’t agree with you they likely won’t refer you. For many business owners, especially those that post about politics, this is of no concern, and in fact they are happy about this, however I thought it was important to point it out.

If you are looking to FIRE UP YOUR REFERRALS, with or without social media, you can do so by downloading 2 great resources I have for you. You can get those here: 

Until Next Time…
Don’t Forget to Live Happy,
Smile A Lot, and
#High5 Everyone Around You!