Client Relations through Social Networking

It’s incredible how quickly social networking has become so integrated in our lives, but a majority of people do not use it to its full potential.  Using social networking to help grow your business and allow you to be successful is pretty simple and inexpensive compared to other forms of reaching out and advertising.

There are many benefits to using social networking to reach out to current and potential clients.  Since computers and automated systems have taken over a majority of the customer service process within companies, it’s a major benefit to show that you are still a REAL PERSON working with your customers.  Social networking is a superb way to let your clients know that you are a real person and to interact with them.

Interacting with clients through social networking allows them to feel that they are getting quality one-on-one attention.  Psychologically, people want to feel that their needs are being met and they are valued by others around them.  With social networking, you can build those relationships with your clients and are able to show that they are worth your time and energy.

Many people are on Facebook and Twitter (and other social networking sites), so take advantage of that.  Don’t rebuild the wheel; use the networks that already exist.  Inserting your name and your business into a network that already exists and functions successfully will save you a lot of frustration and energy.

Another major advantage is that you are able to just post a status (or even a tweet, which is 160 characters) to reach out to your entire network at once.  A lot of people even have their social networks connected on their phones, so you will be able to reach them at any moment in time, no matter where they are.  With a website, you will have to have someone who understands HTML coding/Wordpress (or something similar) and it takes a lot of time to update every time there is a change.  It doesn’t take much time at all to write a sentence or two and send it to your entire network at once.

There are so many types of social networking and so many ways to use them.  I have already talked about Facebook and Twitter, which are the more popular forms of social networking.  Another way to incorporate social networking is to make a blog page.  You can write articles relating to your business and/or industry that would be beneficial to your potential and current customers.  It is a great way to show up in search engines and spread your name to more people.

You can also link your different social networking outlets to each other, so people are able to just click on a link and go from your Twitter account to your Facebook to your blog to your website, etc.  A blog is a great way to compliment your website.  Websites tend to stay the same because it takes a lot of time and effort to change them.  It is not cost-effective to be changing it on a daily or weekly basis.  Having a blog gives you the opportunity to give a current update on different things you are doing or share your thoughts on particular issues relating to your business/industry.

Since so many people already use social networking, use it to your advantage!  Take the time to initially set up your different outlets and to update them regularly.  Putting in that little extra effort will help to set you apart and allow you to stand out to potential clients.

30 Days to Successful Networking

You have spent a lot of money and energy to advertise your business, but nothing seems to build your client base or reputation within the community!  You want to scream at the top of your lungs from the tallest building or pull your hair out from frustration (or maybe you already have).  The problem with those particular options is that it still won’t build your client base or reputation.  🙂

However, I have a 30 day solution that will help solve those problems, and it only takes a few minutes of your time every day!

You’ll either want to print this out so you can refer to it daily over the next 30 days, or else go through the next 30 days and note each one in your daily schedule.  Either way, just jump in and follow the 30 day plan outlined below, and you’ll be well on your way!

Day 1. Introduce yourself to three new people today.

Day 2. Send an email to two people in your network to keep building that relationship.  Ask about a common interest, their family, etc.  Make sure it’s genuine.

Day 3. Ask a family member or friend about their day, and be genuinely interested and actively listen to their response.

Day 4. Make a list of five things you have to offer others.

Day 5. Listen to someone tell you a story/talk about their day without interrupting or giving advice.  JUST LISTEN!

Day 6. Find two things you have in common with another person.

Day 7. Write down the top ten things you want to gain for yourself/your business through networking.

Day 8. Today, introduce two people to each other (either because of a common interest or you feel there is a benefit to them knowing each other).  Connecting people is a great shortcut to growing your network more quickly, because you soon become known as the person who knows everyone, and who everyone knows! This builds your credibility and authority big time!

Day 9. Smile at five people today.  You can then introduce yourself and begin a conversation, when appropriate. Do it again tomorrow. Make it a habit.

Day 10. Go to a networking event.  Your goal should be to meet and get to know at least three new people.  This allows your network to grow by three (and you gain access to their networks as well).

Day 11. Put seven to ten business cards in your wallet or purse.  It’s a good idea to always carry at least seven business cards with you EVERYWHERE! You never know when you will want to hand one out.

Day 12. Look up one article related to your business every day.  If it would benefit someone else in your network, share it with them as well that day.  This opens the opportunity for them to send you an article that may be very beneficial.

Day 13. When you hand out your business card to at least 3 new people today, hand each of them two or three cards. When they say “Oops, you gave me an extra one (or two)” just smile and say “Yep, you can share that one with a friend who could use it.” 🙂

Day 14. Call three people you know today, chat with them, find out how things are going in their world, and towards the end of the conversation say something along the lines of “I don’t know if you can help me out or not, but who do you know that …” and fill it in with what kind of referrals you’re looking for.

First off, people love to be able to “help you out” and secondly, using the phrase “Who do you know…” rather than “Do you know anyone who…” puts their brain into a different gear. When you say “Do you know anyone who…” their brain searches for an answer quickly, and the answer to the question is either yes or no. Most typically the answer is “No, I don’t know anyone who…”   However, when you say “Who do you know?” their brain goes into a different search mode, looking for the answer to the question “Who?” rather than the immediate Yes vs. No, so they’re more likely to come up with an answer.

Day 15. Today create a calendar of holidays that you want to send out professional greeting cards to your friends and associates. Include at least one different and obscure holiday that would be unexpected.  http://holidayinsights.com/moreholidays/index.htm

Include more than one during the year if that’s your personality. For example, in September there’s “Talk like a Pirate” Day. J Be sure to include any holidays that relate to your business – like Sept 16 is Working Parents Day and January is National Hobby Month and June 4th is Hug Your Cat Day.

Day 16. Today make a plan to mail out 5 Thank You or Gratitude or Thinking of You cards per week.  That’s only one per workday.

People love real mail that’s not bills. It will make you stand out because people don’t receive letters or notes or cards anymore now that email and texting is so prevalent. And it will reposition you at the top of their mind again.

Day 17. On your computer, create a simple card for your obscure holiday(s), or better yet, have your teenager do it for you. 🙂

Day 18. Buy a box of business appropriate cards for the next holiday that’s coming up within the next month or two. Maybe Halloween/Thanksgiving/Valentine’s Day/Easter/Fourth of July/Cinco de Mayo/etc.

When you are preparing your 5 thank you/thinking of you cards per week, go ahead and prepare and address the next upcoming holiday card as well as the obscure holiday. Keep them each in a separate stack. This way, the week before the holiday, you have a stack of cards that you can just stick a stamp on, and mail out.

People will be pleasantly surprised, because they don’t expect to receive a card. They’re impressed that you thought of them, and you stay at the forefront of their mind. This system will set it up so that at least 3 times a year they are getting an unexpected card from you when other people aren’t sending out cards to them. (1st the Thank You/Thinking of You card, 2nd the next upcoming holiday, 3rd the obscure holiday.)

Day 19. Instead of sending Christmas cards, send Thanksgiving cards. They don’t get lost in the pile of other holiday cards that the recipient gets, it stands out, and it comes before any of the others start showing up in December.

Day 20. If it’s too late for Thanksgiving cards, send out Happy New Year’s cards. Again, it’s different; you stand out. It doesn’t come in the sea of other cards…And it impresses them that you took the time and energy and that you’re thinking of them.

Day 21. Start your own group around your interests and business. If you’re a caterer, you could start an “Simple Entertaining at Home” group that meets once or twice a month whereby you talk about easy ways to entertain, have parties or get-togethers, and/or simple entertaining food ideas that make you look like you spent a fortune and slaved away in the kitchen. Since people who entertain a lot are your ideal audience, becoming visible and developing credibility in that circle of people will help build your business and allow you to network with potential clients and give you an instant referral network that can tell people how great you are at what you do.

Day 22. Make a daily/weekly plan.  Write it down!  It only takes 10-15 minutes to write down your plan for the week, but it holds you accountable to get those things done.  Pick one of these tips for each day, and write down which one you are going to do for the week.

Day 23. Write down 5 goals for your business that you want to accomplish by this time next year.  That gives you 365 days to reach those 5 goals.  Pin them to your bulletin board; tape it on your mirror; write them in your planner; keep them where you will see them every day.

Day 24. Take your 5 goals and write down a couple things you can do to reach those goals or use networking to your advantage.  Again, writing it all down helps you put your plan into action!

Day 25. Use 5 new peoples’ names today.  For example, if you run into one of the parents of your kid’s friends, start the conversation with their name.  You meet so many people throughout your day that you may not remember every single person you meet.

Remembering someone’s name shows that you have taken an interest in them.  They will feel like you listen and have paid attention to them, and you will form a stronger networking bond with that individual.

I think it was Dale Carnegie who said something like “The sweetest sound to someone is their own name.”

Day 26. Let another person “win” today.  We have all been in some sort of group setting where the answer to the problem seems so obvious, yet everyone is talking around it.  When they finally get to the answer and decide it’s the best option, they all want to claim that they came up with it.  Let them!  Enjoy the process and know that the end result is what matters.  People will think of you as a great asset to the group rather than the person who just brings negativity.

Day 27. Give someone a “compliment sandwich” today.  Knowing how to give feedback to people you associate with is sometimes very difficult, but it needs to be done.  Whether it is your professional or personal network, here is a great tip to get started.  Start with a compliment, but you must be sincere: “That video that you used really helped to make your point.”  Then, you give the feedback/criticism: “I think you could have been more interactive when speaking to the audience though.”  Finally, you end with another sincere compliment: “Overall, it was obvious that you love sharing your expertise about the topic.”

Day 28. Make a Facebook/Twitter page for your business.  Social networking is a free and easy way to start building a network quickly for your business.  If you already have one, look to see if any information needs to be updated.  All it takes is someone clicking the “Like” button on Facebook or the “Follow” button on Twitter, and you have access to that person.  You can post status updates and tweets about anything.  People are all about the Internet, but Facebook & Twitter are two sites that still allow that personal touch.  It allows people to still feel like they are doing business with another person rather than a computer.

Day 29. Start liking or following other pages.  Choose 5 new pages to like/follow today.  A friend of mine is a photographer, but she is just starting out.  She has “liked” some other local photographers’ pages, and she has gotten some great advice from them.  Also, if one photographer is booked or needs a second photographer to help out with a particular event, my friend has been able to take advantage of those opportunities.  This gives her experience and sample photos to display and build her reputation.

Day 30. Reorder your business cards, because by now, you should have given away nearly all the ones you had. Now’s the time to tweak it and make changes to it to add the oomph and power to your card that will allow it to be more effective for you.

Here is a bonus:

Day 31. Do it all over again for the next 30 days, starting with tip # 1 again!

I guarantee that if you follow this 30 day plan, by the end of a month you’ll have met a ton of new people, but more importantly – a lot of new people will know who you are and what you do.

If you’re ready to turn those everyday conversations into lifelong clients and referral sources, you’ll want to order my “Turn Conversations Into Clients” in-depth training program.  Check it out at

http://abetteryoucoach.com/products-services/c2c/ and see if it resonates with you!

Make it Great!

I’d love for you to leave a comment below sharing your most successful networking tips and stories with us. Can’t wait to hear – Please share!

Networking Do’s and Don’ts

Have you ever felt that you didn’t belong in a particular situation?  Say you are married and you go out with a few of your single friends for an evening.  You may feel uncomfortable and decide that you don’t belong.  It doesn’t make for a very fun evening.  Now, you may be wondering what this has to do with your business and networking.

There are going to be times that you are outside of your element, but you need to make the best of any situation.  When you are at a networking event, you may feel that same feeling you did when you were the only married one out of your group of friends.  The good thing is:  It’s always your choice to make the best or worst of the situation!

I have compiled a starting list for you to consider:

DO’S:

-Keep in contact with your network.

It is important to stay fresh in the minds of who you are networking with.  Sending a holiday card or an e-mail to ask how their kids’ sports teams are doing are a few ways to keep in contact with your network on a genuine basis.

-Build relationships, not expectations

Be genuine, and get to know the people in your network.  Building a relationship with a person is way more valuable than networking with them and expecting something in return.

-Make a good first impression

First impressions are very important; we hear that constantly.  It applies to your networking goals as well.  No matter what you do, the first impression someone gets is everlasting!  Make it a good one.

-Dress for success

You may be comfortable wearing jeans and a t-shirt, and your business may allow you to do so.  If you are attending a networking event where people are looking more professional, you should too!  Taking the time to make yourself look your best will help you portray confidence.  People seek out confident people to network with, so be that person everyone is seeking out!

-Fake it till you make it.

If you’re intimidated or shy or hesitant to get involved or start a conversation, pretend like you’re a friendly, outgoing and confident person and do it anyway. As a former shy person, I’ve used this strategy hundreds of times over the course of my life to help me move forward and make connections. I used to say to myself “Pretend like you’re a friendly and outgoing person, and you will be a friendly and outgoing person.”

I even used this tactic when I was younger and put in charge of running my own branch (and later, district) office. I’d tell myself “Pretend like you’re a district manager, and you’ll be a district manager. People coming in here to apply for a position don’t see you as anything but professional and in charge. They have no idea you’re uncomfortable unless you telegraph that.”

And guess what? It worked. I ran a successful branch and district office. I had the respect of my people as well as my peers and superiors in the business. All because I did what I needed to do, I was good at it, and I didn’t telegraph my discomfort and lack of confidence.

And the bonus was that the longer I “pretended” to be confident, the easier it was to forget I was “pretending.” Then I wasn’t pretending anymore – I actually was confident and successful.

So … take it, use it, own that phrase: Fake it till you make it. It works!

DON’TS:

-Don’t be a business card collector

It’s great to have business cards for people in your network, and it’s a great idea to give out your business card when networking with others.  Just don’t collect business cards.  Take the time to form a genuine relationship with the people you are meeting.  If you have nothing in common or don’t see a mutual benefit from being a part of each other’s networks, don’t exchange business cards.

-Don’t talk about yourself all the time

No one likes a self-centered person who focuses on themselves the entire time.  People will actually be drawn to you more if you listen to them talk about themselves.  Taking the time to listen to another person talk and showing interest in what they are saying is way more valuable than talking about yourself the entire time.  After all, we were given two ears and one mouth so we can listen twice as much as we talk.

-Don’t expect anything from people

Networking will benefit you in the long run, but it should not be your immediate goal.  Building a network and connecting other people is just as important.  If you are the type of networker who makes connections between two other people, they will keep you in mind when they are trying to do the same.

-Don’t wait for someone to talk to you

Take the initiative!  Go talk to them!  Put yourself out there and meet people.  The girls gathered in the corner with their friends at the high school dance are not the ones that the guy asks to dance with him.  He asks the girl out in the middle of the dance floor making the best of the night.

-DON’T BE SHY!!!

Along the same lines, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.  You have nothing to lose, only something to gain.  Put a smile on your face, be confident, and don’t be shy! And if you are shy, remember those six little words:

Fake It Till You Make It

Now that you know what  to do and not do to make the best of your networking experience, why not CHOOSE to make it a GREAT EXPERIENCE!

Remember, this is just a starting point.  There are many other things that could help/hurt your networking efforts.  Please share your feelings about the do’s and don’ts listed above and your own networking do’s and don’ts based on your experiences.

Finding Your Passion

Passion

Source Unknown

Imagine you are looking back on your life when you are 100 years old…

 

How do you want your life to look?  What do you want to have accomplished in your life?  Who have you touched or how have you made a difference in others’ lives?

Once you hit a certain age, finding your passion and turning that into something you can use to serve others while providing a fabulous income for you and your family is something that you are longing to do.  You want to be in the position that you will not just enjoy your work, but you’ll feel so nourished and fulfilled by running your business that you can’t wait to jump out of bed in the morning to go share your gifts and passions with some more of those people that you’re meant to serve.

But here’s the stumbling block for a lot of people – see if this resonates with you…

Maybe you don’t know what your passion is?

To address that, here are a few questions for you to consider:

What are your interests and hobbies?
Photography is a common hobby among people.  The people who take that hobby and turn it into a photography business have successfully found their passion in life and used that to make their business.  This also allows them to be successful because they are passionate about what they are doing and it shows in their work.

Fitness is another hobby that many people have.  If one of your passions is fitness, there are many possibilities that stem from that as well – one example being to become a personal trainer.  Think about it: Your enthusiasm for fitness could help someone else become passionate and make a life-changing decision to be more health-conscious because of your passion. And that life-changing decision could literally SAVE their life. How awesome would that be? To know that in following your passion, you have created those kinds of powerful impacts in the world?

This leads me to my next question…
What do you enjoy doing that doesn’t feel like work?

If you are passionate about what you are doing in your business, that passion turns into a better service or product for your customers.  You also will most likely be more enjoyable to work with.  The most important part is that work doesn’t feel like work when you love what you do.

Who do you love to work with? What kinds of people do you love to be around?

Football fans love to go to the game more than just watching it on TV… Why is that?  The game is so much more enjoyable and fun when you are around other people who love football (and the team) just as much as you do.  Use this same concept for your business.  Finding your passion and turning it into your business allows you the opportunity to spend your time at work around the people who inspire you.

What is preventing you from doing what you are truly passionate about?

Whether it is money, pressures from family, time, or some other factor, people tend to find reasons for why they can’t do something.  The question you should be asking yourself is “Why not?”  Or maybe the more impactful question is: How can I do that?  Figure out how to figure it out. When you are truly passionate about your business, nothing else should really keep you from following that passion. You deserve to be energized and fulfilled by your work.  The fear of failure also plays a major role in why people don’t want to pursue what they really love.

A question that I ask people a lot is…

If money were no object, what would you be doing?

What I mean by that is people tend to not do what they are truly passionate about because they feel that it costs too much or they won’t get enough money in return.  While money is an important factor, it’s not always everything!  In order to find your TRUE passion, you need to think about it while you’re eliminating the money factor. That part can be worked out later. Let your imagination partner with your passion to create all kinds of potential options for your most energized and nourishing life.

Now that you have determined what your passion is…

What do you want to get out of your passion?

Hopefully, you have decided that you want to pursue your passion and form your business.  Building a business around your passion would be everyone’s dream.  I mean… who wouldn’t love to go to work every day and do exactly what they love to do?  Back to the photography example…  If you love photography, why wouldn’t you allow yourself to love working in a world where all you did all day was compose stunning photos and create visually stunning works of art?  It sounds like a dream come true to me. J
…And helping people find their passion and build a business that energizes and nourishes them is exactly what I do!

Ready to make your everyday life fit closer to that dream you imagine?  Leave a comment, share your dream, your goal, your vision, your passion…I’m interested to hear where you want to go.

 

Welcome Back Readers!

One of my major goals is to help professionals who are dedicated to passionate service to position themselves so that they are no longer “just one more real estate agent, hairdresser, health coach, chiropractor, housekeeper, dentist, massage therapist, energy healer, dog-walker, mechanic, attorney, handyman, network marketer, etc.” in a vast sea of  many, many generic “_____Insert Job Title Here_____”

This in turn, enables them to attract an energizing and fulfilling client base, filled with ideal clients that allows them to truly serve those they’re meant to serve from their best, most generous and passionate place … following their mission, creating the genuinely successful business of their visions, making the income they desire, and enhancing the life of their dreams.

As discussed in one of the first posts here at DareAndDoGood.com, I want this blog to become a valuable resource that helps you grow your business. I refer to myself as a “holistic business coach” because my philosophy embodies the concept of improving your whole self, and caters directly to how your business fits into your entire life.

I believe that improving your business shouldn’t only come from strategy change and marketing. And by combining new strategies with a simple change of attitude or perspective you can potentially see even bigger results.

I came up with a list of potential topics (several of them have already been discussed to some degree in other posts), but I want to know what YOU want to know!  I have put up the list again below:

Lead generation

Networking

Positioning

Attitude and perspective

Client Attraction

How to set yourself apart from the crowd

Ways to balance your career and your life

Business trends

Social networking

Client relations

Branding

Plus, any topics YOU want to discuss. (This is the part where you share your thoughts!)

In order to provide the best information to you that I can, I am interested in hearing what topics would be of interest to you or benefit you & your business.  Leave a comment on this post expressing which topic(s) would be beneficial or of interest to you as the reader.

While this coaching blog could never replace the value and benefits of my one-on-one business mentoring and the positioning process that we go through, it will start you down the path of becoming a more balanced and satisfied business owner.

So here’s to you making the best of your BUSINESS and your LIFE.

Make it Great!

Theresa

 

Stuff I Love — Fiverr

As they say, Fiverr.com is the place for people to share what they are willing to do for $5. I’ve hired numerous people from Fiverr to do everything from design a logo, to create a video to transcribe audios and videos. Most of it is business related, but occasionally I’ll have them do something different, out of the ordinary, like design a tattoo from a picture.

Sometimes I just read the Fiverr site for entertainment – to see what people are willing to do for $5. There are some crazy and mind-blowing things that people will do for $5. For example, here’s what’s on page one the day that I’m writing this in October 2011:

I will make a video of my Bunny eating your message for $5

I will draw a cute chibi for $5

I will make a 1 dollar turn into a 100 DOLLARS for $5

I will make this amazing intro video8 for your business/website in HD for $5

I will scream your message while flipping on a trampoline for $5

I will put your logo on a Pumpkin for $5

I will make and send you a soda top bracelet for $5

I will deliver an HD Video of my pet tortoise wearing your website or business name for $5

I will make my fingerpets hold your message or endorse your website for $5

I will mention your website, business, or play ur audio ad, up to 60 seconds, live on my radio show for $5

I will make a 15 second long stop motion video with a 4 word or less message for $5

I will write a poem or rap lyrics for anything you want me to talk about for $5

I will do a Turkish coffee reading for $5

I will dance and sing your logo business or friend for $5

I will make a video of your message with candy at high speed for $5

I will hold a sign of your choice up on a busy Boston street for $5

 

Fiverr – Gotta Love It!!

Make it Great,

Theresa

Stuff I Love — Tired of Feeling Exhausted and Overwhelmed?

I’ve decided that once or twice a month or so, I’m going to do a “Stuff I LOVE!” blog post so I can share with you some great stuff that you’ll get to love, too.

Once I decided that I was going to do that, then I had to sort through the list in my head and decide which one to share first – Oh No! How do I prioritize the list?

Well, this one popped up quickly because it’s coming up this week – so you’ll want to hurry-hurry, quick like a Bunny, and register now. Cause it’s coming soon!!   http://www.couragetobehealthy.com/5-zees/

It’s my friend Nattacia’s free tele-class this Thursday. She’s known as “The Goddess of a Great Night’s Sleep” and I’ll tell you what, they ain’t a-kidding. We implemented just one of her productive sleep suggestions at our house (Yep, it’s included in her talk, and she’ll tell you all about it on Thursday) several weeks ago, and since then, our sleep has been better than ever! And I didn’t even think my sleep was that bad, before.

I’m even to the point where I wake up so well-rested now, that I know it has to be like 6:30 or so in the a.m. and getting to be close to time to get up. Then the clock says “Nope, it’s only 2:30 or 3 a.m.” So then I’m like “Score! I get to have some more sleep – Gotta love that!”

How can I be so well-rested in only a few hours of sleep? I don’t know, but it sure makes me feel good to feel so good! I’m sure that the quality of my sleep has skyrocketed with these easy to implement and free tips and techniques.

So she’s going to share with you her five best tips on getting a great night’s sleep. In fact the name of her presentation is “The 5 Zees to a Great Night’s Sleep” because she has oh so cleverly and brilliantly constructed it so that they are all Z’s. How perfect is that for a training on how to get amazing sleep? 

Check it out here:

http://www.couragetobehealthy.com/5-zees/

Then, after you’ve listened in on her “Five Zees to a Great Night’s Sleep” teleclass, come back here and ask me which one was the first one we implemented to see such stellar results immediately. I’ll tell you then, but I don’t want to spoil her message for you.

Enjoy the call,

Make it Great!

Theresa