Referrals are great in any business. However they still need to be qualified. Otherwise we are just back to base 1, meeting people who are not yet ready to buy what we do.
If we think about it, maybe they don’t have the issues that we solve. They don’t have the ability to make decisions alone to work with us. They haven’t been given budget yet, or they have already blown it on key fobs, printed mugs and hilarious mouse mats.
They may be window shopping or looking for some free advice and of course if they can get you to spend some time doing a proposal and putting some ideas together for free why not. None of us do that in the modern world though, do we? Course not !
There is no harm in asking what was it that made think about inviting us in? And what would happen if we had what you are looking for? How difficult would it be for you to buy our product or service, how much upheavel would it be for you to leave your incumbent. You might as well deal with the real problems, that will surface at some stage.
Is it even feasible for them to even buy what we have, can they handle what it means to work with us. You might as well understand what they will have to go through to work with you. They have a million things to worry about, how important are you to them? Where do you think you honestly are in their priority list?