Online Actions to Help Your Referral Sources/Partners Grow their Online Presence
Susan Crossman, author of Content Marketing Made Easy, weighs in on the many ways that you can help your referral sources or partners,
1. Connect Consistently with Your Referral Sources/Partners on LinkedIn
You want to connect online with all of the key people in your network so that you can support them on social media as appropriate-but the most important platform for most business professionals currently is Linked In. Once you’re connected to people on this platform, make sure you “follow” them, and their company page, if they have one, as well. This advice holds true for referral partners, as well as for people whose business you would like to earn, by the way. You can also:
- endorse your referral sources for the skills you feel they possess
- give them a recommendation
- “Like” and “Share” the content they are posting to their news feed
- Comment on their status updates and any articles they share in their news feed
- Ask to join any groups they are hosting
- Post to your own news stream as well, and ask your referral source to support your content by liking, commenting and sharing any posts that resonate with them as well
- Post any articles you’ve written to Linked In Pulse by hitting the “Share an Article” button in your status update box. This gives you more thought leadership, raising your visibility in the Linked In database.
- Suggest to your referral partner that they message you if they want you to support one of their posts – for example, for an upcoming event for which they would like registrations. You can make similar requests of them.
- Get in the habit of connecting with any great contacts you meet at networking events
2. Dive into the joys of blogging
Blogging is an important activity for enhancing your thought leadership, and that of your referral sources, online. Get into the habit of blogging – even once a month – and “Like” and “share” your referral partners’ blog posts, if they are writing a blog. Some people will post a link to their blog posts on their social media feeds, and/or post it to Linked In Pulse.
You can search through their Linked In, Twitter, Google + or Facebook news feed to find a link back to the website where they are hosting the post, or you can navigate directly to their website, and search for their latest blog (usually there is a “Blog” tab on their website). Most blogs have administrators who filter any comments received so if you comment, it might not show up right away. Some platforms also require you to create an account and sign in before you can post a comment. You might also:
- Ask your referral partners to read your blog posts and like, share and comment on any that inspire them so to do.
- Offer to write a guest blog for any referral partners where this might be a good fit (and make sure you provide links to your guest blog through social media
- If you have a blog, invite your referral partners to write a guest blog post for your own audience
3. Like and Share Content Created by Members of Your Referral Network
You want to make sure that you are liking and sharing content created by your referral sources on any of the social media feeds on which you are connected (and you should be connected with them on all of them!). You can even suggest to your referral sources that they message you if they want you to support one of their posts-for an upcoming event for which they would like registrations for example. You can make similar requests of them.
Generally speaking, the principles of doing this are going to be pretty much the same for Facebook, Twitter, Google + and Instagram (if you have a business that can be represented well visually):
- Like your referral partner’s company page where they have one
- Follow or connect with them on each platform
- Like and share their posts with your own community and
- Give impromptu shout-outs to them on a regular basis
Try any one of these actions and help your referral sources/partners with their online presence. Thank you, Susan!