Service professionals have to be proactive about finding and acquiring new clients. The marketplace continues to enable normal people like you and me to earn a living AND gives others the opportunity to get the services that they need. Why is that? It is because we can easily access the people who need the solutions that we offer to solve their problems.
I have found various forms of networking to be highly successful strategies to help grow a business [i.e. enroll new clients]. If you want to see the best results with your service business, leverage the following opportunities:
- Referral Based Networking. One of my very first clients came as a result of a referral from a personal friend. This enabled me to earn thousands of dollars in revenue in my business right out of the gate. Be sure to share with family members, friends, colleagues and others about the solutions you offer. It is imperative that you highlight the following:A) The problems you solve
B) The benefits that your clients get from working with you and
C) Who would be an ideal client for you
Once your friends and contacts are armed with that information, they’ll be able to spread the word about you to their networks.
- Strategic Networking. This is especially good for service based businesses. Your local Chamber of Commerce, Toastmasters, BNI and other organizations are great for general networking. But you’ll get much better results if you focus your efforts. Think about your target market and your ideal client within that market. Where do they hang out? Where do they look for the information you have to share? That’s where you should show up. Get actively involved in these organizations to create as much visibility for your work as possible.
- Social Networking. Whether you utilize Google +, Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn you need to be engaging people in conversation and developing relationships. Social networking websites have opened up incredible opportunities for solo service providers. And don’t ignore the smaller networks that cater to your ideal clients. Participating in these groups can create massive visibility for your work. Be sure you’re scheduling time each week to strategically connect with prospects and referral partners.
Remember that your goal in networking is NOT to solicit new business. *You* should NOT be the focus. One way to get a conversation partner talking is to ask this valuable question, “Who is the perfect prospect for your business?” And once you know what the other person is looking for, be sure to send them referrals. People appreciate that and will begin to market your business for you as well.
It’s necessary to differentiate yourself from the crowd. You can do this by sharing the story of why you started your business in the first place. Tell them why you’re engaged in your specific business and make it compelling enough to make people interested in what you do. Let other people know your story. What is your BIG WHY for starting your business?
Through these combined networking efforts you will begin to attract the type of clientele that you want for your business. Be consistent, honest and truly interested in helping people. Your motives become quickly apparent to people that you talk to.
Networking with others is just one piece of the five pillars that are necessary to build a successful service business. I invite you to join me for a FREE training webinar on Thursday, August 25th where I’ll teach you the other elements and “How to Structure Your Business for Maximum Profits and Productivity!” Visit http://sydnicraighart.wpengine.com/profitable-structure/ to secure your spot.