Whenever you meet someone and are discussing who they want to meet and who you want to meet I like to end the discussion with this question.
Name, is there any reason at all—and it is okay if there is…it won’t hurt my feelings or upset me at all —that you can think of why you would not be comfortable in referring me to (insert your target).
Then you shut up. You want to know why, if there are any, reasons why someone won’t give you referrals. And you need to give them permission. Sometimes people will not tell you why they won’t give you referrals. So you need to ask!
This nugget of information will help your referral marketing activities 10 fold if you use it! Once they say there are no reasons, then you can get permission to start going through their database, but be sure to go slowly and be respectful!