Sandy Rogers: The Referral Queen

AskSandyRogers.com has been a top destination for business owners and entrepreneurs because of the help and personalized coaching they get from Sandy. We had the pleasure of visiting Sandy to get a better understanding of what she does and how she does it.

Words by Nerds: How did you become known as the “Referral Queen?”

Sandy Rogers:  It’s something that people have called me for years because I know a lot of people — and I don’t mean that in an arrogant way.

I’m one of those people that when I’m networking and meeting people, whether I’m in a social environment or a business environment, and I hear what somebody does, it goes into my brain. Then I’ll be in an environment when someone says I need someone for this job or project and I remember meeting the person from before. I’m really good about keeping a database and I’m able to refer people. It’s something that’s evolved over the years.

WBN: Describe how AskSandyRogers.com got started.

SR: When I first started my business I had so many things that I was doing and I needed an umbrella to put them all under to brand myself. The business name at the time was called Triangulus 3 Marketing. ‘Triangulus’ is a Latin word which means ‘connecting of all three sides’, which is what I do — I’m a connecter. I connect people, so it made sense to use that.

The challenge was that nobody knew how to pronounce it, [laughs] they didn’t know how to spell it so it was very confusing. And over the years what’s evolved is really AskSandyRogers.com, it’s how people know how to find me.

WBN: What services do you provide clients with AskSandyRogers.com?

SR: It kind of falls into a bunch of different categories. One of them is event promotions, I do that through something that I kind of created my own moniker with and I call it an ‘eAnnouncement service’.

It’s not a newsletter because it’s not full of content and that kind of stuff, it’s an email that I send to my subscribers typically twice a month, more often if I’ve got people that want to promote something specific. The people that use my service are people who have events that they want to promote, a business that they want to promote, something unique or special that they want to promote.

What I saw was that [some] people didn’t know how to promote themselves. They love what they do, they’re really great at what they do, but they have no business mind. I have this blessing, sometimes a curse, that I can walk in both worlds. I spent 40 years in the corporate world of sales and marketing and I love that, this is my lifestyle.

If you have the passion and you have the idea, the resources will come

The other aspect is that I produce and manage events. Somebody might have an idea for an event, whether they have 20 or 2000 people they want to have at a seminar and they need to get something promoted for, and they’ll say, “Oh, by the way, I need someone to help me manage the event.” So it’s a pretty broad spectrum of what I can do there.

The final piece of business that I do is what I call a marketing one-on-one mentor. I will sit with a business owner and I will literally spend an hour and a half to two hours with them and do coaching. I ask questions like, “What do you need in your business?”, “Do you have a website?”, “Where are you marketing?”, “Where are you networking — more importantly because you’re the brand, you’re the business.”, “Where do you go to let people know that you’re here?”, “How are people finding you?”

I really coach them all the little nuances and things that you need to do as a business owner to help get yourself out there and known.

WBN: What do you like to “nerd out” about?

SR: I love getting into the back end of the website–honest to God! I mean, I don’t know HTML code, I know it when I see it and I can grab it and copy it into some place, you know, and I would never in a gazillion years think that I’d be technical in this way, nerdy in this way, but I love it..

I use Constant Contact for my email management and I’m able to go in and create the templates and do all kinds of stuff with that, and if I have the time and I haven’t missed my deadlines, it’s really relaxing for me. It’s where I get my creativity.

I’m not an artist but I’m an artist when I can put that together. I love putting together stuff like. That’s my nerdy side.

WBN: As someone with so many contacts and relationships, what has been the hardest thing about working online?

SR: I like having ‘eyeball contact’ with people. I like creating relationships. That’s [the] foundation of everything I teach. It’s all about building relationships. If you want to go network, it’s about building a relationship with one or two people at a time, not with a room full of people.

With everything moving to the digital, we’ve lost sign of the value of having a real relationship that’s not with a computer screen or a keyboard on a phone. It’s really building those relationships. That to me is the challenge.

How do you bridge that? How do you get people to realize and recognize that the value is in the relationship? Not in the number of contacts that you have. It’s not in the number of friends that you have, it’s what‘s in the relationship. That is the challenge.

WBN: Although face-to-face contact has begun to decrease, what benefits have you seen with networking and communicating online?

SR: A benefit conversely is having the access to [so many] contacts. Then it’s up to me to choose to build those relationships. When people send me a friend request whether it’s on LinkedIn or Facebook, 99% of the time I’m going to accept the request.

Depending on the time of day and where I’m at, I may go look at their profile and see who they are and often times, especially if they’re local, I’ll follow up and say, “Let’s go have coffee!”, “Let’s meet for a glass of wine!”, [or] “I really want to get to know who you are and what you do!”

WBN: If you could offer advice to someone starting their own company what would it be?

SR: Do your research, be clear about what your message is, and don’t stop. If you have the passion and you have the idea, the resources will come [and] the connections will come, but don’t stop.