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Thinking about new ways to enlarge your client list? How about getting up from your desk to have fun and socialize? Yes, generating leads does not have to feel like work all the time. One alternative (and highly effective) way to meet prospective clients is to put your favorite dress on and rub elbows with people.
Being present in different events will help you build a bigger list of client. Here are a few things to remember to make the most of your attendance.
#1 Know where to go. You would most likely hear about an event from a friend or an ad at a local paper but there’s an easier way to know when and where the hottest events are. There are websites that produce this kind of information. My favorite site for checking out events in my area is http://www.atlantaevent.com/. It provides a list of events in Atlanta on a certain date. It even gives you the time and contact information of the coordinators. When I want to check out event outside Atlanta, I go to www.EventBrite.com.It provides information on mixers and other events that you can search by providing the date, category, and zip code of the area you want to check. They also send out a newsletter to announce certain events and they will let you advertize your own mixer as well.
#2 One thing to always remember when attending a mixer or an event is to go there with a purpose. Sure you would want to socialize but never have too much to drink that you forget why you are there in the first place: to meet potential clients. Don’t be confused… your goal is to start long lasting business relationships BUT you can only do this properly if you are not pushy and in a hurry to close a sale. Only after building genuine connections with people can you fully "work your magic."
#3 Never forget to bring plenty of business cards. Go around and exchange cards with everyone you meet and connect with. Remember that people get more than a dozen cards in mixers and conferences so make sure that yours stand out. Invest on a well designed card that will automatically catch attention and see to it that it holds all of your important information. Don’t have a business card yet? Check out my favorite designers at www.jwmmarketing.com.
#4 Follow up. The next day, send your new friends a quick call or email to let them know that you have not forgotten about them. Say something as simple as “It was great to meet you. I would love to stay in touch.” Remember, the sales is in the follow up. Even if you don’t get them to sign a contract with you, new friends can refer you to colleagues. Return the favor by telling your friends and clients about them too.
#5 Dress to impress. Never fail to look like a million bucks. Put on your best high heels, get some fresh manicure, and put on a little make up. Image is everything. First impressions always last and how you look on your first meeting will always stick with people. Looking your best will get them to remember you.
#6 Give this strategy a steady flow. You should not stop at getting your first set of clients from one mixer. Be visible on expos, conferences, parties, and other events on a regular basis. Do this at least once a month. Different kinds of events planned by different organizations on different locations will allow you to have a wider scope of prospects. Going out of the city is also advisable when you’re looking to market outside of your locality.
There's nothing to loose in this strategy of expanding your prospect list. If you don't successfully gain customers, you can still at least have people to network with. And even if that doesn't work, you know you have gained more friends.
Credits: The Queen of Biz Makeovers, Shanesia WInston
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