“I’d be happy to provide you with a reference or two, and let me ask you: if after you speak with them you hear what you need to hear, are you going to move forward with us and put us to work for you?” [If yes] “Great! Then hang on just a moment and let me get a client on the phone, and I’ll conference you in. After you’re done with your conversation, we can get you signed up…”
“_________, when someone asks you for a reference for your company or service, have you ever found that some people never even call the references?” [Let them respond] “And don’t you get the feeling that there is just something that’s holding them back and they just aren’t quite sold on your company yet?” [Let them respond] “Well, since you’ve got me on the phone right now, why don’t you tell me what’s holding you back or what you’re concerned with, and I’ll see if I can answer it for you.”
“I’d be happy to. Now ________, as you might imagine, I’ve got all different kinds of clients using this, so do me a favor: let me know the things that are concerning you, and I’ll then match you up with the right reference who can address those things for you.”
As you can see – when someone asks you for a reference, the most important thing you can do is isolate this stall and get your prospect to reveal what the real concern is. Unless you find out what that is, not only will your prospect not call your reference, but they may never call you back again either…
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