Networking Tips


Focus on Your Core Service to Maximize Your Referrals

By: Eden Creamer-Hurdle
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    Networking Tips

  • Author

    Eden Creamer-Hurdle

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What is your core service? When you boil down your business, what are the two or three things that you do the majority of the time?

In BNI, we like to say that specific is terrific – meaning, the more specific you can be with your referral partners, the easier it will be for them to refer you. The flip side of this is narrowing down the focus of your business, and dedicating yourself to it.

By focusing on one or two core services in your business at least to start, you can develop key specializations. Because practice makes perfect, focusing on a core service for your business allows you to dedicate the time necessary to master the skills necessary to succeed.   

So how can you focus on your core services and expand down the line?

Start with identifying what is at the root of your business. What did you get into your field specifically to do? What direction do you really want your business to move in? Create an elevator pitch to help you see what services you boast when meeting someone for the first time. If you have trouble creating an elevator pitch, you are looking at your business too broadly. Narrow down what you do. It’s okay not to be all things to all people!

Once you have identified what services you offer, look at what you do not offer. Consider making separate lists for “one day services” versus “no day services” – meaning, services or products you may offer in the future versus those that that you cannot envision offering. You’re not stuck with this list for the rest of your career, but it will help you identify your growth plan to know what is and isn’t in scope for your business.

Don’t waiver on what is out of scope for your business. If you are a printing company that produces flyers, banners and brochures, and you’ve listed online advertisements as an out of scope, do not let yourself fall down the rabbit hole. If something is not a service you offer, and it is not something in your repertoire, it is better to turn down a job and refer the client to someone else in your network, than accept the job and potentially damage your relationship by not producing your best work.

As your business and team grows, you can begin adding more services to your business, but be wary of how and when you do so. Before widely offering a new product, test it with a select group, and always only test one thing at a time. The goal with adding new services is to add something that will provide additional value to your clients, so make sure you are not letting them down on that promise of quality in the process.

How do you manage adding new services to your business? Let us know at