Jay said he had a serious question for me. He has to tell you when he's being straight with you, because he's a hilarious storyteller with such a deadpan delivery that you need a warning. Otherwise you start cracking up when he says stuff like, "I was at the store ..."
2008 was the best and worst of times for Jay, who lost his father Chris Petersen in November but doubled his sales from December a year ago. And yet, with all that going on, here he was, sitting in my office with these burning questions:
"How can I be more useful to the Chamber? How can I find the best membership prospects? And what are their characteristics so I can find more of them?"These are amazing questions on many levels. First, he's asking "what can I do for you?" Can you imagine what would happen if every one of your contacts asked you this question? Can you imagine if you had this question for every one of your contacts?
Second, he's asking for a specific description of the most likely client to help him be as efficient as possible in finding referrals for me. I sure didn't tell him, "oh, anyone with a business." I gave Jay the most targeted description I could think of. That might leave out a few prospects, but it highlights the very best referrals.
In return, of course, I asked Jay what I could do for him. As any good marketer should, he knew what I could do to help him, which - somehow - is again helpful to me.
Year-to-date score of excellent vs. clueless networkers? 2 to 1