Marketing Monday: Competitors = Referral sources?

Could your competitors also be your referral sources?

Could the people you bid against also be a source of work for you?

I say yes, if you decide to see them that way.

Let me start by outing myself: for many years I avoided consultants that I perceived as my competition.

I am not even sure what I was thinking, except ignoring them seemed like a good idea.

Then, I started getting referrals from these consultants. In fact, some of my best clients lately have come from one so-called “competitor” — David Baker of ReCourses.

Why is he referring me?

  • Because it turns out we actually do very different things, offer very different services and have very different approaches and strengths.
  • Because when he can’t provide what a prospect needs, he needs someone to send them to. Not everyone who comes his way is a good fit.
  • Because he’s not, in fact, my competitor. He’s proved instead to be a generous colleague and referral source.

So here’s the question for you: which of your so-called “competitors” could you see differently and develop a mutually beneficial relationship with?

That’s your task for Marketing Monday. What else are you doing?

BTW: The basic marketing strategies for any designer or creative professional, for that matter, are outlined very clearly in my book, The Designer’s Guide to Marketing & Pricing.