Introducely lets you reach directly into the personal, business and academic networks of others to find contacts that meet your needs. Whether you’re looking for business advice, an expert speaker for an upcoming event or someone who can landscape your new yard, Introducely is a great place to start.
Taking a few proactive steps when placing a request can help ensure the right people respond — or that anyone responds at all. Learn how to complete a successful request for an introduction below.
1. Be Specific
The more specific your request, the more likely you are to find someone who can introduce you to the right person. The details in your request help Introducers qualify themselves and those in their network, determining if they know someone who is a good fit for your needs. If you don’t include enough information in your request, you may get a wide range of responses. That leaves you having to dig through responses to find ones that might be a decent match.
For example, you might want a contractor to help you with a flooded basement, and you live in Ocean County, New Jersey. Here are some ways you could phrase that request and why some of them won’t work as well:
- “Introduce me to a contractor.” This is too vague. People may not respond or you might get suggestions for roof installers or other builders, contractors who specialize in commercial properties or people only licensed in other states.
- “Introduce me to a residential contractor licensed in New Jersey.” Better, but this request still leaves the door open for responses that aren’t relevant to your needs.
- “Introduce me to a residential contractor licensed in New Jersey and willing to provide work on a recently flooded basement.” This is the best level of specificity because it defines exactly the type of contractor you want to connect with.
2. Offer a Reward
You can make requests that don’t offer a monetary reward, but Introducers are more likely to fulfill requests that will make them money. After all, that’s the main reason most people signed up to be Introducers to begin with.
When you make a request, you can attach any amount you want as the payment for the Introducer. You’ll only pay for your request if there’s a successful introduction.
You don’t always have to offer a large reward to get responses. How much you offer should align with the value you’re placing on the introduction and how difficult you think the contact might be to reach. You can also start with a certain amount and increase the payment offered on a future request if you don’t get any suitable responses.
Offering just $5 or $10 for an introduction can drastically change the amount and quality of the responses you get.
3. Add Qualifying Questions
You can add qualifying questions that Introducers need to answer when responding to your request. This helps you weed out applicants who don’t meet your requirements. This can be much easier than sorting through paragraphs of responses to spot qualifications you’re looking for.
For example, if you want to be introduced to the COO of a company with at least 50 employees and an average annual revenue of $5 million, you could ask questions such as:
- What title does your contact hold?
- What company does your contact work for?
- How many employees does their company have?
- What is the average annual revenue of your contact’s company?
Here’s another example: You might want to invite a speaker to your homeschool event. Perhaps you’re looking for anyone who has experience raising animals, so a farmer, an animal conservationist or a zookeeper would fit your needs. Questions you might ask in a successful request could include:
- Is the person comfortable with a basic background check for safety purposes?
- How long has the contact raised animals?
- What animals has the contact raised?
- Can the contact bring one or more animals to show?
4. Be Flexible About Contact Methods
When making a request, you can specify your preferred introduction method. Options include email, text/SMS, phone, video meeting, social media or in person.
These options let you customize responses to meet your needs and comfort level with various formats, but you should also be cognizant that other people have different needs and comfort levels too. Being flexible about how you are introduced makes it more likely your request will be fulfilled.
Always choose at least two options, and choose as many that you can reasonably work with.
Remember, too, that in-person meetings, at least for initial introductions, will almost always limit your replies. First, they limit you geographically. If you don’t need to be introduced to a person in your area, demanding an in-person meeting unnecessarily cuts down on your options. Second, in-person meetings take more time and effort to accomplish, and people may not be as willing to put that effort in just to meet you.
Emails are professional, convenient and low effort. Video meetings can be used when you have a lot to say that doesn’t work as well in chat or email environments.
If you’re not sure what contacts to choose and you’re able to work with any of them, choose them all!
5. Categorize Your Request Correctly
Finally, make sure you categorize your requests correctly to maximize the number of relevant Introducers that review them. You can choose from four categories: Personal, Business, Academic or Other. Here are some tips for categorizing requests:
- If you’re looking to be introduced to someone else’s business contacts or want to connect for a business purpose of your own, start with the Business category. Examples might include requests for accounting expertise for a small business, connections to business investors or a desire to interview business leaders for a research project.
- When you want to be introduced to someone for help with personal needs or believe the contacts you’re seeking are most likely in people’s personal networks, choose the Personal category. Examples of requests that might go in this category include introductions to plumbers, landscapers or others who can help with your home or provide connections to parent or hobby groups in the area you can join.
- For requests that are related to education or likely to come from people’s education-related networks, begin with the Academic category. Examples of Academic requests might include someone seeking a speaker for a school event or a thesis student looking for experts to interview for a paper or project.
Ultimately, being successful as a Requester on Introducely comes down to using common sense, providing the right level of information and being flexible enough to encourage as many requests as possible. The good news is that you never pay for a request if you don’t get a successful introduction out of it. So there’s room on the platform for a learning curve, and you can test out requests to find what works best for you.
About the Author
Nick Chasinov is the founder of Introducely and covers topics regarding sales, marketing, technology, networking, career growth, and all things Introducely related.