- Where are our ideal customers hanging out? It might not be where you are! And if it’s not your making your life very difficult! Yes, there are opportunities for referrals and building your network which might eventually get you to the right people – but how much could you fast track your success by working out where your ideal customers are already hanging out? Are they at industry or institute events? Are they networking at awards dinners? Wherever it is – get yourself there! You’ll get in front of more of the right people – quicker!
- Hang out at events! Please don’t take this the wrong way – heading to events based around your industry is super fab – BUT – you can’t go there to ‘sell’ – there is nothing more disrespectful than going round and trying to sell to people who have paid to have a stand at an event. What you CAN do however is take advantage of ‘the coffee queue’ – it’s a great place to catch up and start to talk to people who have similar interests and may be a good match for your department…. And you could stand in that queue all day meeting new people and building new relationships!
- Remember your competitors – every business has busy times, picking up overflow work from others in your field can be super helpful – it can also give you the opportunity to build a network of people you can use when you find yourself in the same situation and also give you the opportunity to learn some new skills! Word of warning – remember this is a super professional environment – and you probably need a contract to make both parties feel comfortable no-one is going to ‘steal’ each other’s client!
- Get back in touch with people you have worked with in the past – is there anything else you could help them with? What results have they seen since you last worked together? This can be a great way of ‘reminding’ people you are around and shaking out a little extra business.
- Referrals – yup really important! But rather than waiting for a referral to come to you, why not get in touch with your existing customer base and pro-actively ask if there is anyone in their network that they feel would be a good match for you – it’s a great way to leverage your ‘fans’!
What else works for you? I’d love to hear your tips and tricks….