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making introductions that change lives. here is the full guide.

Updated: Jul 24, 2021



Besides being a nice thing to do, introducing the right people to each other and facilitating authentic connections can be supercharging your own network aka your net worth.


In a digital world, introductions are easier than ever, here's your ready-to-use, zero-excuses, copy-paste-guide for 2-minutes introductions.

networking is the no. 1 unwritten rule of success in business. - Sallie Krawcheck

Here you can jump directly to the relevant section (no time to waste, right?):




introducing peanut butter jelly

To date, one of my favourite connections that I ever made happen (through a simple e-mail) is between a startup founder and an investor.


Wt* has this to do with PB&J you might ask?


Well, so it happens, that the startup founder is producing the best (not kidding!) peanut butter on this planet (Rok's, check it out!) and the investor's name I introduced him to is JELLY. I mean, you can't make this up! If this doesn't scream match made in heaven, what does? This connection 100% was meant to happen and I'm very grateful that I was part of this cosmic destiny.


What was in for me as the connector?

I secured myself a lifetime supply of free peanut butter - actual goals! Haters would say money would have been the better choice, but considering my daily peanut butter intake, I doubt it. It also brought me closer together to both parties and I actually got a job offer at the company (which I needed to decline, as I was busy with the female factor already).


Ok that sounds all fantastic and great - but what if YOU are on the side who needs the jelly? Or the nut butter? No worries, we've got you covered.


how to ask for introductions without making it awkward (+example)


Follow this three steps to (almost) guarantee a fruitful introduction:

  1. research your prospect

  2. prepare your pitch blurb

  3. ask for the intro

First ask yourself why your contact person should risk their social credit by introducing you to the prospect. So go ahead and make sure to do your research about your potential new contact, so you can state your case accordingly.


This will directly benefit the second step: preparing your "pitch blurb". Sending an introduction blurb will make the life of your contact easier plus it will ensure that you're presenting yourself in the best light possible.


Pro tip: Preparing an outstanding blurb also makes it easier to ask your weak ties (people you don't know well or not at all (looking at you random LinkedIn contacts)) for introductions, since you can stress your expertise (e.g through mentioning articles/awards/achievements/certain names) which makes you more credible.

Continuing with the last step: Actually asking for the introduction (the easy part).


Here an example of how a quick introduction request can look like:


subject: connection request Beatrix (Mondi Group)


Hi Tanja, how are you? I saw you're connected to Beatrix from Mondi Group on Linkedin. I'm currently searching for new opportunities to develop myself further in the innovation and sustainability field and I'd love to spare with Beatrix how Mondi is doing in that sphere and if we might be a match work-wise.


I prepared a little introduction to make it easier for you:


"Hi Beatrix, how are you?

Nina Mueller (link her LinkedIn profile here) approached me asking for an introduction to you. She's currently searching for new opportunities to develop herself further in the innovation and sustainability field and would love to learn more about Mondi's journey.

She recently published an insightful article about the future of packaging, which you might find interesting. If you think you can benefit from the contact, please let me know and I'll connect you two.

Tanja"


If you feel confident doing an introduction, I'd be very grateful and happy to share the outcome.

Thanks, Nina


Wasn't that difficult was it? I'd definitely go ahead and do the intro here.


some things to keep in mind:

  • everyone's busy, keep it short and clear

  • you're asking people to vouch for you (social credit is a thing!)

  • it's ok if they say no, no hard feelings

  • share the outcome - people are grateful if their introductions make a difference and they were able to help

Now that we have the asking part done, let's connect the parties.


how to introduce people via mail (or linkedin)


To ask or not to ask? Depending on the busyness and your relationship it might be a good idea to ask if the other person would like to be introduced at all. A "double opt-in" makes sure no one gets ghosted and makes the introduction less awkward. No one wants to be left on read, right?


Based on what we learned above about how to ask for introductions, we can use the same request before making the introduction.


subject: connection request Nina, a sustainability expert


Hi Beatrix, how are you?

Nina Mueller (link her LinkedIn profile here) approached me asking for an introduction to you. She's currently searching for new opportunities to develop herself further in the innovation and sustainability field and would love to learn more about Mondi's journey.

She recently published an insightful article about the future of packaging, which you might find interesting. If you think you can benefit from the contact, please let me know and I'll connect you two.

Tanja


If the prospect (in this case Beatrix) responds positively the magic can happen.


Here an example of how this can look like:


subject: introduction Beatrix (Mondi) <> Nina (sustainability expert)


Hi Beatrix, hi Nina,

as promised, here's the introduction between the two of you:

Beatrix - CPO at Mondi Group

Nina - the sustainability pro interested in joining forces with Mondi

I suggest you two jump on a call to explore opportunities. Feel free to take it from there. Happy connecting,

Tanja


Pro tip: directly link their LinkedIn profiles for an even faster connection


how to pick up the conversation

Wuhuu, congratulations, you've got your introduction! Now what?


It's your turn now to make the most out of it, so there is a couple of things to consider:

  • reply asap to avoid the awkward silence and uncertainty of who should take the lead

  • thank the person who introduced you and move her/him politely to BCC to avoid any thread spamming

  • suggest a meeting or call (eg through Hubspot or the ad-hoc add-on of Calendly (lifesaver!) directly in the mailing to make sure actions are taken


the fine print (or etiquette) of introducing people

What else is there to consider when asking for or making introductions? A couple of things to keep in mind:

  • follow ups are ok: even if your first attempt got ignored, you can send another follow up asking for clarification. Everyone's busy and sometimes we just don't have the message on the radar at the right time.

  • reply and act fast: if you got a great introduction, make sure to really follow through. The person introducing you used their social credit, there is nothing worse for your personal brand if you're not acting fast (or at all).

  • show up: once a call or meeting has been scheduled make sure to show up as your best self.

  • thank you opportunity: once the connection has been established, send a quick thank you note to the person who made it happen. Extra plus points, if it's a handwritten note or any other nice gesture (yep, this is how you build relationships!).


to wrap things up

Introductions can go a long way: ranging from introducing potential candidates for a job, to investors, to prospective clients. Connecting these dots can be a powerful way to foster your own relationships and boost your own personal brand and market value.

Make sure to make introductions as easy and smooth as possible, act fast and always show up as your best self. This ensures that people will continue open doors for you.


And don't forget to share the outcome of your introduction (if successful) with the connector or us ;)!


 

Need an introduction yourself and I could help? Ping me with this "secret recipe" on LinkedIn and I'll do my best to help.

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