What does BNI mean to us and our businesses? Everything. My original business, Web Handyman, was born because of BNI, and Social-Cindy.com was also created because of BNI.
Back five years ago my husband and partner, Bill Fletcher and I were both in BNI. I was in the Platinum Coast Chapter in Lake Forest CA and Bill was in the Beach Cities BNI chapter in San Clemente, CA. He was working for a prestigious web development and marketing company and I was transitioning out of the Real Estate and Mortgage business. Our chapters were two of the biggest in Orange County and we were friendly rivals.
Bill was giving and getting plenty of referrals, but most of the companies being referred to him were small businesses of 10 employees or less. Those types of projects were way below the price point of Bill’s employer. Bill didn’t want to turn the business away so the company he worked for gave him permission to design and build the smaller websites himself. He was also getting requests to update information on existing websites. These sites were fine, they just needed their addresses, photos, and phone numbers updated. Thus came the name Web Handyman. Bill felt it was not good business to try and push small businesses into the expense of a new website when their current one was perfectly fine. He was their Web Handyman!!
Over the next three years, a steady stream of referrals kept Bill busy repairing and building new websites. BNI was working for him. But the websites he built were not getting enough traffic. Bill knew people needed to do things like Facebook, Blogging, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media work in order to push their websites up in the search engine rankings but most of these good people were so busy working in their own businesses they had virtually no time to work ON their business. That is when social-cindy.com was born! Web Handyman needed social-cindy.com to help small businesses get the most out of their websites!!
Two businesses, brought to life by BNI. Now we are both in BNI here in Florida, I am in the Sebastian Chapter and Bill is in the Vero Beach Chapter. The referrals are still coming, both from here in Florida and from our friends in California. I don’t know any two companies who are a better testimony to the success that one can achieve in BNI.