Hundreds of salespeople and leading independently-owned shredding companies in the shredding industry make a habit of sales success using sales-ready referrals from Shred Nations.
How Sales-Ready Referrals Enable Success
The habit-forming effect of sales-ready referrals is directly attributed to the sweet taste of success from an overwhelming competitive advantage provided by referrals, the low cost of referrals, and their enormous positive impact on sales and profitability.
Starting in 1999 Shred Nations designed sales-ready referrals to create sales success in response to a sales manager’s request – “Just give me one customer at-a-time that needs a shredding service – right now. I’ll handle the rest.” Today, Shred Nations’ referrals originate from customers that are searching the internet for a shredding service. An experienced marketing group distills each referral from a continuous information flow from more than 1,500 inquiries per day. These inquiries originate from clicks, conversions, phone calls, form-fills, and customer interviews.
Why Sales-Ready Referrals?
In their final form referrals represent exceptionally accurate information. The sales efficiency attributable to accurate information is augmented by the awesome persuasive effect from extreme speed in responding to every customer request. Salespeople from local shredding companies are frequently in touch with customers who are looking at a computer monitor that displays the inquiry they sent just a few moments earlier. Routinely Shred Nations responds within seconds after a referral is completed to both inquiring customers and local shredding companies.
A momentous breakthrough occurred when Shred Nations combined accurate information with extreme responsiveness. Perhaps a newly perceived readiness of customers to act is attributed to the digital-age orientation of Gen X and Millennial generations who are growing beyond today’s 68% of the U.S. workforce. Perhaps the internet’s ability to generate instant information put self-directed customers in a frame of mind that they are prepared to act when their needs are met. Perhaps it is simply salespeople that are trained to listen and deliver the right message. Regardless the decision-making process of customers changed over the past decade.
Forming a Habit of Success from Sales-Ready Referrals
Customers are now buying shredding services with the first phone call (about 60%). Closing deals based on referrals is an easy and simple process for companies in the Shred Nations network. While it isn’t quite like shooting fish in a barrel, success is routine. As a by-product of sales success, shredding companies that are outside of the Shred Nations network rarely receive opportunities to earn referral business because 80% of referrals are quickly closed within the network. Another happy consequence for the Shred Nations network is that companies with established business relationships are losing customers before they can react. With about 2/3rds of the industry dominated by Shred-it and Iron Mountain, a major redistribution of shredding business is taking place and contributing significant growth for independently-owned shredding companies.
Individual and organizational success habits develop in this setting. A new sales-ready referral is the cue. It stimulates an immediate phone call to a welcoming customer and an automatic sales routine that starts with listening to the customer’s needs and confirming the ability to deliver. This behavior is rewarded with a positive reaction. It is followed by negotiating price and concluding the negotiation. This entire process creates a sense of personal satisfaction and achievement. People crave this feeling and desire to repeat it. Organizations create routines in support because referrals provide marketing cost leadership and a sustainable source of new profit. Leading organizations go one step further.
Referrals are not only a source of transactional profit – most can be turned into long-term business relationships because every company needs a shredding solution for their daily flow of confidential information. Also, every new customer invites converting their neighbors to additional new customers and possibly a customer gain from referrals.
Keep an eye out for part two of this series: Why Successful Habits Are So Powerful.