This Piece is from My Book The Process II. It is applicable in ANY business.
Relationships are the key.
We are fortunate to work in referral marketing at a time when communicating with people is easier than it has ever been. Thanks to the internet and the advances in hand-held communication tools, is has never been easier to reach out and connect with someone. We must never forget though, that the human touch can never be replaced by technology.
The best referral marketers use technology where it is appropriate and helpful, but use personal communication as the foundation. Think about it this way. The fastest way to make a deep connection with another person is face to face and in person. This is because all the senses are involved for both parties. The less physical senses that are involved in a form of communication, the less personal impact it will have.
A face to face in-person meeting is better than a Skype meeting. A Skype meeting is better than a phone call. A phone call is better than a text. A text is better than an email. A personal email is better than an email blast. This is just my opinion, but I believe in most cases this is the truth. I know there are other technologies I could have referred to, such as social networks, and other visual Medias, but the point is that they all have a place, but not as an isolated way to develop your business and relationships. Just because you are friends with someone on Facebook does not mean that you are friends in the true sense of the word.
Your most important relationships need the personal touch consistently, whether it is in your referral marketing business or not. Use technology to multiply your ability to work the process, but do not rely on it to build relationships.