What is BNI?
BNI is the most successful business networking referral organisation in the world. We have over 13,000 members in the UK and Ireland alone, passing nearly 680,000 referrals worth over £339 million every year! It is quite literally the best way to build a better business.
BNI allows only one representative from each trade or profession to join any BNI group. This means you can lock out your competition, ensuring you receive 100% of all new business. Working together, BNI members achieve incredible results, growing their business in ways they could never accomplish alone.
Visit a BNI Meeting
Marsland Nash Associates are proud to be members of two BNI Chapters. BNI Locomotive and BNI Riviera both of which are based in Torbay. If you would like to attend one of these meetings as a guest to see how they run please contact Steve Marsland or Nathan Murphy who can organise this for you.
How BNI Works
BNI’s philosophy is Givers Gain®, which is simply this:
“If I give you business, you’ll want to give me business”.
We teach our members how to attract and win more new business through word of mouth using our unique Referral Marketing System – a proven method for generating a continuous flow of reliable, quality new business just for you. It sounds complicated but it isn’t and more importantly it works like a dream.
BNI is like having your own unpaid marketing team working for you, because your fellow members give out your cards and refer your business to people they meet. Why do they do this? Because they know you are doing exactly the same for them. Even in this digital age, we all know that “People buy People”, which is why BNI’s Word-of-Mouth Marketing is so successful for many different trades and professions.
BNI provides a structured, supportive, business environment for local business people to network, learn valuable new skills and develop strong personal relationships. The resulting trust is the key that unlocks the door to a wealth of new business because once you have established that trust, your fellow BNI members will have the confidence to give you referrals.
What Can You Say in 60 Seconds?
At the heart of every BNI meeting throughout the world is the “BNI 60 Second Slot”. This is each member’s opportunity to educate everyone at their meeting – members and visitors alike about their business. Who they are, what they do why they are so good at it, who they are specifically looking for in new business terms (name, title, company) and anything else that would help their fellow members get them those important referrals.
We’ve all heard of the “Elevator Pitch” but few of us have ever been trained how to prepare one. 60 seconds is certainly not enough time to make a speech but it is often all you have to get your message across to a prospect. That is why BNI have developed a way to maximise your effectiveness in such situations using our succinct 60 second format.
We regularly organise training for all our members to develop their presentations, using memory hooks and other effective methods to ensure that their message is focused and remembered. This has immense practical benefits outside BNI, where in real-life networking situations, a member can use their BNI training to give an instant and concise account of what they do and why customers use them.
The Most Important Meal of the Day
We have long recognised the need to work smarter. That’s why our meetings generally take place at breakfast, finish before the business day starts and run to an effective 20 point agenda. We don’t come together for a coffee and a cozy little chat. Our sole reason for attending our weekly meetings is to net-WORK to generate more business.
You can attend any BNI meeting anywhere in the world and be confident of what to expect because they all follow exactly the same well-structured format and use exactly the same efficient agenda. That’s why BNI works so well.
Visiting a BNI Meeting for the First Time?
Visiting a BNI meeting for the first time? Well, follow these simple tips to make sure you make the most of attending the meeting.
Make sure you bring lots of business cards – not just a handful! BNI meetings can have up to 50 + people and they’ll all want your card!
Once all of the members have given their 60 second presentations, you’ll get a chance to do one too on your own business. Think about including the following:
- Your name & business name – sounds obvious, but not everyone remembers!
- What you do: a great way to tell the chapter what you do is to tell a story about how you helped a client recently. Research has shown this is far more engaging than simply listing all your products/services.
- Who would be a good referral for you: who do you want to do more business with? Who would help you move your business forward? Name them – you never know someone in the chapter may just be able to help. Remember, the power of BNI isn’t in the people you’ll meet at the meeting, it’s who they KNOW.
Finally, if you feel nervous about giving a 60 seconds presentation, don’t worry – you’re not alone! Everyone you’ll meet at the meeting was in your position once; and they were nervous too. Just give it go. If it doesn’t quite go to plan – no one else in the room will know what you were intending to say…