The expensive storm

It howled all night. I’m not referring to the dogs but the winds. The morning brought calm and the extent of the damage. Half a dozen slate tiles had fallen to the ground exposing the roof to the elements.

“You better get that fixed” called Claire as she headed off to the shops.

And I looked up to the roof with my binoculars, all 30 feet of it and thought, “that’s not something I want to do”

In the evening Claire, who is a natural networker and knows everyone in the village and their life histories, asks around to find out if anyone knows anyone who does…

Roofing and tiling.

And that’s the point behind this story. When your customer needs to solve a problem or a pain, like missing slates, they will do one of two things:

  1. Ask someone in the network if they know anyone who does…
  2. Or search on Google to find someone or to learn how to solve the problem themselves.

Because we now have total and utter control over our buying process, we keep control by devising how to solve the problem.

The message? Quite clear. Are you networking online and offline enough so that when potential customers ask if they know of anyone who…are you referred? How referable are you?

The second message is how much Google Juice do you have so when potential buyers go searching online to solve their problems do you crop up.

Personally I think referrals are so much better, they eliminate competition because you’re recommended. I get a clear 80% of my new business from referrals from my general network and existing clients.

Claire spoke to our neighbours from Ivy House. She chatted about children, chickens and the weather and then found out that they had a man around who charged £15 per hour and would scale any heights to do his job. Just the chap. A quick phone call and he was around and has done a number of pieces of work for us, with great skill and diligence and we didn’t even have to check him out because he was referred.

And I got to get on with my job and not climb up a 30 foot ladder, heavens knows what next.