People Who Need People Need Low-Cost Networking Secrets

People Who Need People Need Low-Cost Networking Secrets

No one survives in business alone. You need people – customers, in particular. One way to find more people is through networking.

Networking is best when done strategically and cost-efficiently – not just “Let me go out and see who I meet.” So, what can you do to apply strategies for building a customer base through networking? Check out these ideas…

Strategy #1: Start with your most valuable contacts. All your customers are valuable, but some have greater potential than others based on their purchasing history and other details. List segmentation helps you know your highest value customers. Identify the people in this group. They have earned a personal networking contact from you, and that contact is more likely to pay a return than someone else in your list.

Strategy #2: Share your hobbies. We weren’t the first person to think of “a round of golf” as a networking opportunity.  That and working out or going fishing – whatever you want to do – it’s always a plus to spend a little downtime with a potential for an upsell.

Strategy #3: Keep in touch on a regular basis. That’s the principle of customer retention. So keep those cards, letters, newsletters and emails coming.

Strategy #4: Stay organized and efficient. Create a system for maintaining contact, including maintaining a current customer database.You can hardly seem like someone’s friend if you’re reaching out to them as “Mr. Tom Jones or Current Resident.”

Strategy #5: Send appreciation notes and cards. If you see a customer’s name in the news for an award or recognition (not for something on the crime pages!), send a congratulatory note. Send birthday cards. Send letters thanking people for their business and referrals.

Strategy #6: Always ask for referrals. Don’t be afraid. Just ask. Ask on your website, in follow-up emails and in personal notes after a job is done.