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201 GREAT IDEAS for Your SMALL BUSINESS, Third Edition by Jane Applegate

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GREAT 108 IDEA: Set Up a Strong Referral Network

Successful entrepreneurs know “what goes around comes around.” While many referrals are made informally by word-of-mouth, smart entrepreneurs take it a step further.

Dana Adkinson, owner of Keepsake Floral Inc. in Orlando, Florida, runs a successful floral preservation service. She relies on referrals from florists and wedding consultants to keep her 12 employees busy. Every year, Keepsake preserves between 1,000 and 1,500 bouquets. Adkinson said she started the business in 1994 at her mother's suggestion.

“While we were on our honeymoon, my mother took my bouquet and one from my maid of honor and went looking for some way to preserve them,” said Adkinson. “She couldn't find anyone to do it. So, ...

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