A NEW kind of business networking is making strides in Huddersfield.
Now members are reporting increased sales by embracing new technology through the Referrals Network.
The group helps businesses to grow through an online business referrals system which fosters good relationships and traditional networking within an online format.
It allows members to refer business without compromising their day-to-day business activity.
The Huddersfield group of The Referrals Network has 23 members who have referred sales leads that have resulted in more than £26,000 of recorded sales in 24 weeks.
David Randall, of The Referrals Network, said: “I have spent all my professional life networking and know how valuable it is to business success, but I’ve always had the same objections – restrictive rules with some and the lack of rules with others.
“I wanted a middle ground and couldn’t find it, which is why I launched a referrals-focused networking organisation that gives people the option to do all the traditional forms of networking, but doesn’t penalise them if they don’t.
“It’s a system that provides sales leads online from your fellow business members.”
Jamie Lambert, of JDL Plumbing, said: “This really works for us. We recognise networking contributes significantly to our business stream, but we also have long working days and often irregular working weeks which makes it difficult for us to commit to routine networking events.
“This is one of the main reasons we joined The Referrals Network as it gives us the freedom and the opportunity to contribute and build valuable relationships and sales enquiries.”
Mr Randall said: “Face-to-face meetings are still important and individual contribution to the success of the group is noted and graded – but there is no obligation to conform.
“The Referrals Network believes business people working towards a common goal can manage their own commitments successfully to help each other.
“After meeting your fellow members you are aware of the services they provide; meeting every week thereafter is only to pass referrals. We do this online!”
The Referrals Network already has two groups in Leeds and one in Wakefield in addition to the Huddersfield group.
It is also expanding across other sites in Yorkshire and Lancashire.