Raise your hand if you have all the clients your heart and wallet can handle.
Yes, I know. Starting out with any business the one thing you can always use more of is clients. Time may be a close second, but if you play your cards right this is the perfect time to make a huge impact in your business and give you more of both.
When we start a business, we usually start by talking to friends and family, which is great. Some will even help you by becoming customers or sharing your news with their own contacts. But if you're like most people, chances are your circles include a lot of the same people so it won't be long before that stream of clients dries up. So how can we find more?
Some time ago, I thought I was seriously working hard on my business, yet having few results. Looking back, I realize I had no real plan, every day I was reacting to what opportunities might present themselves and not making the ones I wanted to see. Once I created a plan that would generate consistent leads it was much easier for me to see progress.
I've seen people suggest various systems for making connections, but here's what helped me. I call it the 5x5 Method. These 5 things helped me generate more leads, more consistently than I ever have before. I suggest you do these 5 days per week, hence the 5x5 method. You could do them 7 days per week, but I am the FAMILY and business coach and hey, I want you to live. If you do these consistently, you really can see amazing results, so you don't have to work around the clock.
I like to have a record of what I am doing. So if you like a paper record of who you've communicated and when you can use these freebie to keep yourself organized.
5. Email 5 potential clients or customers. These could be people you know personally or people who you've recently met at networking or professional events. 5 emails per day will take you minutes, but can get you in front of the right person at the right time. Here's a list of people you can email today.
- former clients
- old friends
- former colleagues
- former bosses
- podcasters you enjoy
- bloggers you read
- previous prospects
4. Call 4 people. These can be personal or professional, but should be brief and focused on building relationships. Maybe you call an old professor and say thank you for the support that they gave or call a family member you've been meaning to check in on. Using your voice to connect in the digital age is more meaningful than you might expect.
3. Make 3 LinkedIn connections. Your professional network has to grow if you want your business to grow. Think about people who can benefit from your services, but also people who you might like to work with in the future. You don't have to make a huge introduction, just connect and think of them as you work your way around to the other items on this list.
2. Send 2 snail mail items. These can be thank you cards, postcards, or even promotional material. 2 per day keeps your costs in consideration, but again takes you out of the digital world a bit so you become more than just an email. A great tip is sharing a referral or business card for someone else. This keeps the good vibes coming around and even if you don't have a particular product or service for someone chances are you know something or someone who they could or should meet.
1. Have 1 face to face meeting. Yes, your face in front of someone else's. Yes, everyday. I know this can feel like the hardest to do, but I think it can do the most good for you when you're trying to build a reputation. The hardest thing about the online space is that you are trying to convince people to know, like and trust you without technically meeting them.