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Successful Networking

Congratulations, you’ve joined a networking group.  You get to come in once a week and the referrals will be dropped in your lap…Wouldn’t that be great?

It takes time and effort to become part of a sales team.  When you first join TEAM, we ask that you start with getting to know everyone by having Coaching Sessions.  Once you know and trust the people in your chapter, you (and they) will be comfortable knowing that you are a person of integrity, and will feel comfortable in sending you referrals.

It’s important to always expand your circle.  There are so many different events that happen around town.  Make it a point to go to a chamber mixer, ribbon cutting or any other event that will be an opportunity to meet new people.

FOLLOW UP!!!  If you take someone’s card, ALWAYS call or email them, and let then know you enjoyed meeting them.  You never know where it may lead.

 

Karen Cormier

 

Belt tighteningWith the economic recovery sputtering along, it’s easy to fall into the mindset that cheaper is always better. But even when budgets are tight, there’s a right and a wrong way to save money.
Trim spending in the wrong places and you can end up hurting your business in the long run, says business strategist Carol Roth, a former investment banker and the best-selling author of The Entrepreneur Equation. Here are three of most common cost-cutter mistakes:
1. Cut back on customer service. When small business owners start to get panicky about their spending, one of the first things to go is often the perks and services that you lavish on your customers. That’s the last place to trim, says Roth. For example, if you own a restaurant, it may be tempting to decrease the number of servers, therefore asking the remaining servers to handle additional tables. Don’t do it.
“If you are cutting back in areas where your customer is going to notice, that is a mistake,” says Roth. “Your best opportunity is to maintain or beef up in the areas that are going to impact the customer.”
2. Chop the marketing budget. Another common knee-jerk reaction of an anxious entrepreneur is to slash the funding designated for marketing. That won’t affect your core business, right? Wrong. Eventually the economy will recover more robustly and customers will be willing to spend more freely. If you cut back on your marketing spending now, you are cutting yourself off from the new customers that will grow your business, says Roth.
Also, down periods in the economy are ripe for expanding because the rival business down the street has probably had the same impulsive reaction and reined in its marketing budget. “You don’t want to pull back in an area like that, especially when your competitors are doing that, because that gives you an opportunity to poach” customers, says Roth.
3. Scrap employee perks. One way to push the bottom line higher is to cut out the Friday snack that has become a tradition in your office. Don’t. It’s the little things that make your employees feel valued and appreciated and keep workplace morale up. And that goes a long way toward helping your business.
“That loyalty will resonate from the inside out,” says Roth. And happy employees keep your customers happy. “It is all about the customer because if you don’t have customers, you don’t have a business.”

By: Catherine Clifford

DO:network

DON’T:

Kelli C Holmes

Determine the value of  referrals to your business.

Once you have determined the value of referrals to your business, look for ways to develop good referral sources for your business.  Ask yourself the following:

Are you professionally visible? Being an expert in not enough.  You need to be visible, approachable, understood, trusted and be able to leave a lasting impression.  Check your professional visibility by answering these questions.

Kelli C. Holmes is the CEO and Founder of TEAM Referral Network, a professional referral organization that turns success-oriented business people into a strong team of networking professionals who work together to build their businesses by referral. Relationship marketing is a better, smarter way of doing business. For more information visit their website www.teamreferralnetwork.com or call (866)311-TEAM.

1. Mix, Mingle, Meet
• Don’t sit only with those you know! Meet new people!
• Sit with only ONE person you know and make new connections with the others!

2. Set Goals for the Event
• Meet 10 new people
• Meet 2 new Power Partners

3. Know What You Want to Say
• Spend 5 Minutes on your 1 Minute! Perfect your pitch!
• Know what you want to ask your new contacts!

4. Have Your Business Cards With You
• Other Marketing Materials Too!
• Ask for cards from your new potential networking partners
• Bring your TEAM Spirit!

5. Schedule Follow Up Time
• If you don’t actually follow up, you might as well never have met them!
• Send a card, email, or make a call
• Schedule a time to meet again in person for a “Coaching Session

Kelli C. Holmes is the CEO and Founder of TEAM Referral Network, a professional referral organization that turns success-oriented business people into a strong team of networking professionals who work together to build their businesses by referral. Relationship marketing is a better, smarter way of doing business. For more information visit their website www.teamreferralnetwork.com or call (866)311-TEAM.

1. Make your Business Commercial ROCK!
• Vow to spend 5 minutes on your one minute (or however much time you have to introduce yourself!)!
• Get very specific. Think “a great referral for me this is…”.

2. Commit to really be PRESENT!
• Out of sight is out of mind!
• Being casual about your attendance at networking events implies you are casual in
all of your business commitments. Your networking partners might question your “referability”.

3. Attend events (as many as possible).
• Local, regional and organizational wide events are offered all the time!
• Take advantage of these knowledge expanding networking opportunities.
• Commit to your Personal and Professional Growth by educating yourself this year!

4. Do an AWESOME presentation when you speak!
• Prepare a “knock your socks off” presentation to show your stuff.
• Answer the question… “How (and why) to refer business to me”.

5. Do Coaching Sessions!
• Make a plan to meet “one on one” with every potential networking partner.
• Organize your notes from these meetings to be more effective in referring your
networking partners.

6. Expand your “Power Partners” opportunity!
• See who is missing from your “Power TEAM”.
• Ask your networking partners to refer or introduce you to these professionals.

7. Put all of your Relationship Marketing Goals in Writing!
• Set specific, measurable goals.
• Base your goals on personal performance or skills and knowledge to be acquired.
• Have a way of being held accountable.
• Reward yourself in the achievement of your goals!