Back to Basics – Networking In The Digital Age

In this digital age of marketing, I believe we’ve lost sight of one of the basic building blocks necessary to growing any business…building relationships and face-to-face networking.

We’ve lost sight of building relationships with people. Instead we’re focused on the size of email lists, social media, sales pages, making six-figures or more, and treating each person as a revenue source rather than a potential client to build a relationship with. It’s time to go back to basics and focus on the transformation we can help our clients achieve, not just the transaction.

Explaining who you are and what you do in a way that will generate interest and get prospects asking questions is one of the most effective methods of relationship marketing. However, it is often the most overlooked aspects of marketing your business.

Clearly articulating what you do so that the prospect gets it immediately is challenging and takes time to prepare. In “Book Yourself Solid®,” author Michael Port is on a mission to kill the traditional “elevator speech.” He suggests replacing the “elevator speech” with the “Who and Do What Statement.” This is the cornerstone of connecting with your prospects.

In addition to your “Who and Do What Statement,” also make sure you remember to incorporate the following top 10 tips before attending your next networking event:

  1. Incorporate the prospect’s name in one-on-one introductions. You want to show your prospect that you paid attention to their name and that it matters to you. Remember, the sweetest sound to anyone is the sound of his or her own name.
  2. Establish alert eyes and enthusiasm. All of your focus and attention is on the prospect no matter how many people are in the room or standing by.
  3. Establish credibility. Within the introduction your prospect should hear something that clearly indicates what you offer could be a benefit to her. Engage your prospect by “giving”.
  4. Create a reason for someone to share the news about you and what you offer. You want others to view you as a priority contact, not only for themselves but also for others.
  5. Be flexible! One size does not fit all! Adapt your language to the individual you are speaking to or circumstance you are in.
  6. Look for opportunities to open doors for others.Successful people make things happen for others. They provide access to people and resources.
  7. Have clarity and focus. Make sure that others are able to track with your conversation. Your words, body language, and tone of voice must be clear, concise and in sync.
  8. Go for the gut and aim for emotion. Most purchasing decisions are emotionally based. Create a vivid mental picture for your prospect and how their pain is relieved by your solution.
  9. Remember giving first. You’ve heard about the law of attraction and the notion that “givers get.” What you give comes back to you ten-fold. Remember to give first and do what you can to help and connect the other person to your resources and network.
  10. Practice, practice, practice. It’s ok to write your introduction down and practice on different audiences. You should have several introductions prepared to use in any situation.

 

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Cindy Earl, M.Ed. is the founder of ClaimYourSpotlight.com and Red Carpet Women Network (RCWN). For over 15 years, Cindy has been a well-respected consultant, trainer, author, and small business growth expert for women in small business. She has coached and consulted with many small business owners and entrepreneurs on marketing strategy, public relations, lead generation and online business tools.

Cindy is a Book Yourself Solid® Certified Coach and the author of “Claim Your Spotlight: Become an Instant Expert in Your Niche & Walk the Red Carpet to Business Success.” Her products and services have helped simplify marketing for hundreds of small business owners, authors, experts, speakers, coaches and consultants worldwide.

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