In the olden days (before 2009) this worked pretty well. It actually still works, the difference is that you need a lot more relationships to get the same number and quality of referrals.
Today’s assignment: Start a relationship with someone you think is interesting and that you would like to know. Regardless of whether or not you think there is any business opportunity in it for you. Rinse and repeat, weekly.
Here are some options:
- Scan your Twitter feed and reply to an insightful Tweet from someone you admire.
- If you’ve recently read an inspiring post, send a brief email to the blogger.
- If you’ve recently read an inspiring book, send a brief email the author.
- Been to a conference lately? Email one of the presenters.
- Go sign up for Quora and join the question and answer fray.
P.S. This is a great way to subtly raise your profile with influencers, too.