Requesting Referrals From Former Clients

Editor's note: A newsletter is an opportunity to tell your story. So fill it with details and tell your readers a lot. Answer questions. Don't leave them guessing.

My mantra is that 80-90% of good clients come from family, friends, and business acquaintances—and from their contacts. Therefore, any time we have a new service to offer or product to introduce, I always return to my friends and former clients with the news first. Often, that's as far as I ever need to go. It's so simple, and it works. Every time.
I'm writing to you because you're a friend and former client.  Better than anyone, you know what we do and how we do it.  You've tried the product on, and hopefully, you liked it!

I need your help in reaching a specific, targeted market:  the market of people "just like you." 

We can't attract these clients by advertising.  They come to us by referral and by referral only.  I'd like your help in getting the word out about who we are and what we do. 

Our clients are presidents and senior executives of companies, senior partners in major law firms, entrepreneurs--yes, even NFL players.  Brand name people whose names are household words whose names you'd easily recognize.

Right now our clients include the ex-President of a $300MM company, ex-banking executives consulting in Russia, and current Denver Broncos players--just to name a few.

We work with individuals in all situations at all levels, from recent college grads to $50,000 mid-level managers.  But we're specifically targeting the $100,000+ person, because that's what we do best.

—They have difficult, complex, and sophisticated career problems.    We rise to the occasion—it tests our expertise.

—They're tough, demanding, and impatient. 
  We like that.

 —They expect results.
   That's what we deliver.

In my experience, a senior professional or senior executive—someone who's at the top of their game—wants answers fast.  They don't have patience for people who don't know what they're talking about.

We're experts—not beginners.  "We've been there, done that, and bought the T-shirt."  We know what we're talking about. 

Our ideal client is:

  1. Age 40+
  2. Career-oriented
  3. Already successful, desiring more success
  4. Male or female
  5. Earning $100,000+
  6. In a career dilemma:  facing some kind of crisis or transition, such as job loss, burnout, or conflict with a boss.
Unlike some of our competitors who charge a $5,000-$15,000 fee up-front, we still charge by the hour ($150) and bill at the time of the meeting.  The client is always in control of the budget—never surprised by a large invoice.  Our fees are usually very small when compared to outcomes and benefits.
For Example:
  • After 12 weeks with us, SA now reports directly to the President of H&R Block.
  • In six short months, JM established a $100,000+ consulting practice, while still considering $450,000 full time offers.
  • WW's offer letter ran 5 pages and included everything but the kitchen sink. [Editor's note: I can't believe I put that cliché in here.]
  • We helped TC, ex-VP Information Systems for a major hospital, to launch a national consulting practice. 
Geography isn't a consideration in our business.  We have clients in Paris, Viet Nam, England—worldwide.  And we work globally via long distance telephone, phone, FAX, FedEx, e-mail, and the Internet.  It doesn't matter where people are—we can help them.

Bill Rector, ex-President of Coors MicroLithics—now President of NMI, Inc.—described CareerLab as "a small personal firm that cares."  And it's true.  That's our market position.  Our client load is typically 12-20 clients per consultant, compared to 45-50 for many of our competitors. 

Our facilities at CareerLab are updated and expanded—you wouldn't recognize the place.  Our state-of-the-art center now includes:

  • Large and small conference rooms
  • Individual client workstations
  • Large, well-appointed private offices for executive clients
  • Full library of research books and directories
  • On-line databases of 5,000 recruiting firms and 11,000,000 employers
  • Extremely accurate electronic database for Colorado
  • Internet connections at every phone terminal in the suite. [Today we use wireless connections.]

The Internet gives us access to 12,000,000 pages of research data, hundreds of resume banks, job search data, company profiles—you name it, it's there.

Much like an executive suite, we furnish any service career explorers could possibly need:  videotaping, word processing, postage, FAX, FedEx, voicemail, Internet e-mail, and WEB browsing.

Once a stand-alone company, we now have a full-time branch office in Houston.  In addition, we've created strategic relationships with 15 affiliate offices—we're a local firm with a national presence. 

I think you'll admit CareerLab looks good. 

I've enclosed a packet of background materials for your review.  Please look them over, then give me a call.  I'd like your harsh critique and your observations about our direction and our programs. 

If I haven't heard from you within a few weeks, I'll give you a quick call.

With best wishes, always,

William S. Frank
P.S.—Since 1978 we've worked for more than 150 major U.S. corporations. We have an elaborate product line directed to the corporate market, focused on:
         BETTER Recruiting & Hiring
         BETTER Training, Developing, and Managing, and
         BETTER Separation & Outplacing.
         I'd like to show it to you some time.  


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