This Is How To Ask For Introductions With Success

An efficient technique that makes your success rate for introductions astronomically higher

November 2, 2016

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During my last two years where we have built Unacast to the world's largest network and aggregator of beacon and proximity data I've gotten a lot of help. I've reached out to, and still do every week, to people who have expertise and knowledge in areas where I come to short. In many cases, I didn't know the person I wanted to get in touch with, and I've used my network to get an introduction.

After a lot of practice and failing, I finally found an efficient technique that made my success rate for introductions astronomically higher. I now use it consistently, and for me it has proven to enable me to get in touch with almost anyone that I want.

1. People like to help people — take advantage of it

A lot people I speak to are not comfortable asking for an intro. “Why should she help me, she is probably busy and has way more important things to care about”. What I've learned is that people like to help people, its a part of our basic human needs.

Second, people love to connect people. Being a connector gives social status, something most people value highly. It says you know people, influential people. This basic need is something I encourage you to take advantage of.

2. Make it easy for the one you want to connect you

I can`t emphasize this enough; its critical to make the request for an intro so easy for the receiver to process that she can use a minimal amount of time to make the intro. If you don't, your request will be ignored, and it`s just too much work in a busy week.

While I still frequently ask for intros, I also daily receive request from friends and people asking if I can connect them to someone I know. I enjoy connecting people, but some requests are hard to process. The example below I frequently receive and unfortunately get`s stuck in my inbox for weeks — or forever:

Hi Thomas,

I see you are connected to Rob at Sun&Clouds, do you mind connecting us?

Best, Jeff

This does not work. How can I know what you want is relevant for Rob? Our network is one of our most valuable professional assets we have. People don't want to waste other peoples time, but rather create value for both parties. If you do the example above, your success rate for requesting intros will be poor — very poor.

What you should to is do provide context, make the request relevant and so easy to process for the receiver that it`s no reason not to make the introduction. This is how usually do it, and feel free to copy:

Hi Jim,

Unacast continues to grow rapidly, and we`re adding partners to our network every month. I've had Sun&Clouds on my radar for some time, and as they also work with proximity data, I have two specific ideas on how we can work together and provide them a new revenue stream.

I`m aware of that you know their CEO Jeff and would appreciate if you can connect us.

Please feel free to use this email as a way of introduction.

Best, Thomas

This request is short, to the point and I explain Jim why I want the intro and the benefit and upside for his connection. The last sentence I`ve experienced is the deal maker.

Please feel free to use this email as a way of introduction.

It encourages, and makes it so easy for Jim to hit the forward button with the text “Is this Interesting?” and send it to Jeff. In all, maximum 45 seconds.

Grow your network, use your network — but use it smart.

Good luck!