Want a quick easy way to establish credibility and distinguish yourself from other agents or advisors?
Create a one-page Client References list on your letterhead and also in a digital format (pdf).
Your list should include no less than 6 and no more than 24 of your best clients.
It should display only their names, their occupation or former occupation (if they are retired), the company they own or work for, their town or city of residence, and their phone number.
Be sure to add at the bottom of the page in large, bold type, something like this:
IMPORTANT: This list is proprietary and confidential. Please respect the sanctity of this information.
You then present this sheet to any prospective client (in a meeting or by email) with the following explanation: “Bob, I am very proud of the work I do and the results I get for my clients. Here’s a list naming just a few of them. You might recognize or even know one or two. You are welcome to call any one of them if you want. Just tell me which ones you plan to contact, so that I can let them know you’ll be calling.”
What Happens Next
Usually, if your prospect is receptive to you, he or she will peruse the list, which will register a positive psychological impression. If they recognize someone they know, they will say so. If they don’t, they might recognize the company they work for, or respect the veracity of your client by their occupation.
However, because most people are reluctant to reach out to people they don’t know, they will almost always accept this information as implicit validation without any intention to actually call your clients. The efficacy of this tactic is in the “transparency” and confidence it implies.
Why This Works
1: Your willingness to offer subjective validation for you (personally and professionally) and the value of your services, creates a very favorable psychological impression.
2: Even if your prospect does not recognize or know anyone on the list, the psychological impression is that these people are making a qualified “implicit” referral, which is how people prefer to make buying decisions.
3: Almost no one else does uses this tactic, because most other agents or advisors are typically not willing to be so forthright, confident and transparent.
Try it for yourself, and let me know how it works for you.
About the Author: Dan Viñal is the Executive Director for WebPrez insurance and annuity sales presentation videos. He periodically writes on the practical application of scientifically proven communication techniques (such as rhetorical psychology, neurolinguistics, and subliminal resonance), including best practices for using video to increase sales, as well as specific video topics, problems and solutions for financial security professionals.