Any kind of business requires relationship building. Those who have great social and communication skills are a step ahead. But for most of us it’s trial and error before we develop those skills. Here are a few tips to make it easier.
- Once you’ve made your warm market list and written down everyone you know, create another list of people you think are using the type of products/services you will be selling. Then compile a final and most likely list. These are all the people you think will purchase from you immediately and support your new business.
- Invite the people on your “mostly likely” list to a small party or BBQ. At the gathering, announce your new business. Make it social…don’t try to sell anything yet. Just ask to make appointments to meet with them individually to talk about the new business.
- Once you begin to follow up on your appointments from your mostly likely list, seek people who are most excited about your new business and are willing to support you. These people are those most likely to do business with you, and send you their referrals.
- Provide your most excited people with excellent customer service consistently and they will likely be your loyal customers and repeat customers.
- Start to connect with all the people on your warm market list on Facebook or other social networks to begin the process of building relationships.
- Meanwhile, also call the rest of your list and ask to meet with people for coffee or breakfast to discuss your new venture.
- Always keep your appointments social, friendly and pressure free. Ask about them first, and discover needs that your products/services may meet. Then share how your products/services help people solve their problems. So even if they aren’t interested for themselves they will see the benefits and may still give you a referral or two. Ask them to put in a good word for you to their referrals.
- As you build your social network online, offer solutions with your products/services that solve the problems of your friends. Share tips/useable information related to your products/services without selling online. Think of social network as a subtle way to introduce your new products/services and NOT e-commerce.
- Start going to family, friend and other social gatherings. Be social and don’t sell, but if they ask about your new business, offer to make an appointment to meet. Always have your appointment book with you, offer dates you are available and don’t leave any request for information open-ended.
- Start getting involved with your warm market’s organizations and causes, and genuinely participate. Being with them at these events can imply you can be trusted and may help you generate face to face referrals.
- Use the principle of quantity and many numbers. At this point you want to connect with as many people as you can through your warm market. These people are more likely to be converted because they trust you and/or your warm market referrals. Don’t rely on your salesmanship skills, rely on the numbers. This way if you get a few no’s you won’t be discouraged, because there are still a lot of people to talk to.
- At some point you will encounter no’s from your warm market and that’s to be expected. But keep them updated with your progress. You never know why they said no in the first place: maybe wanted to see you do it first or maybe it was poor timing.
Take it a step at a time. Connect socially, develop relationships, ask for an appointment, and then ask for the sale. After the sale, follow up to make sure they’re happy with their purchase. The key to success is to go through the process, learn from your mistakes and stick with it for a while. In the end it will help you build your business skills and lead to more opportunities for success.
How do you work with your warm market? What tips would you give to someone new to this? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments!
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