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Increase Your Revenue by Becoming a Successful Networker


Successful networking is a critical part of generating revenue. However, there is a right and wrong way to network. Unfortunately, many people waste so much time networking but do it at the wrong place and in the wrong way, thus having no results for all the time they spent at networking events. Today I am going to share what to do to become a successful networker.

Where - The first thing to do is identify all the places you should be networking.

  • Indirect business will be found at your trade association events. This is where you meet and build relationships with other investigators so you can refer business to each other. Of course, this is also the most comfortable place to network because you are among your peers. However, do not allow yourself to get stuck in your comfort zone. Referrals are great, but depending only on referrals puts you in the passenger seat of your business and can bankrupt your company.
  • Direct business will be found at events held by your target market. For instance, if your market is criminal defense attorneys, you want to network at criminal defense attorney events. But if your market is personal injury attorneys, you will want to network at personal injury attorney events. Or, if you offer background screening for companies, you will want to network at business functions where you will meet CEOs and Human Resource Directors. This is usually a little scary for people because it's out of their comfort zone. However, meeting the decision-makers that need your services will generate business.
  • Does your business operate local, statewide, national or international? Networking with associations that cover your service area is the most beneficial to you.

What to Do — How to make the best use of your time.

  • Be prepared to ask for others' business cards more than handing out your business cards. If you have their card, you can follow up. However, if they have your card, and you don't have theirs, you will have to wait for them to call you, and this once again will put you in the passenger seat of your business. And, you want to be in the driver's seat.
  • Talk to as many people as possible while at the event. When you talk with people, your goal is to learn about them and their business so you can assess if they have a need for your services. Once you know about them, you can then tell them about you, and now that you understand their needs, you can talk about how you can help them.

What to Say — Your elevator speech needs to be created and delivered correctly to be effective.

  • When asked, "what do you do?" the last thing you want to say is, "I am a PI." This answer does not give them any reason to ask how you do this, so you lose the opportunity for the conversation to go very far.
  • You need a 30, 60, 90-second elevator speech that stimulates conversation.

Example of the wrong way:

  • "What do you do?" "I am a business strategist."
  • "Oh, that's interesting."

Example of the right way:

  • "What do you do?" "I help companies increase their revenue and become profitable."
  • "Interesting. How do you do this?" "Well, I help companies identify and engage with their target market in a way that generates revenue."
  • "What kind of companies do you help?" "For 20 years, I have successfully helped private investigators, such as yourself, develop effective tools and scripts that highlight the benefits of their services, thus creating a desire for people to hire them, which generates revenue and increases profit. Is more revenue and profit something you would like to enjoy?" "Absolutely!" "Excellent. Tomorrow, I will contact you to schedule a one-hour free consultation to learn your exact needs and assess if I can help you increase your revenue. Would this be okay with you?" "Yes, this would be great!" "Okay, it was nice meeting you, and I look forward to our call."

Follow-up — If you do not follow up with people you meet, you have wasted your time at the event. So many people do not follow up, and this is where a relationship is developed, and business is won.

  • The night of the event or the next day, take the time to write out a card that tells them how nice it was to meet them and say something meaningful about them or their business and enclose your business card. Yes, an actual card, not an email.
  • The day after the event, call the people you met who are prospects and who you told you would contact the day after the function. Do not delay doing this, or you will lose credibility.
  • If you do not land their business on the call, put them on a call back list and call them again in a month, then three months, six months, and a year. If you are sending out a monthly e-newsletter as you should be, put them on this list also.
  • Never leave a call without asking if they know anyone that needs your services.

As you can see, much more goes into successful networking than many people know or do. If you need help writing an effective networking script or developing a monthly e-newsletter, please be sure to call the experts at True Perceptions, Inc. at 678-583-0401 or email me directly at diana.garren@trueperceptions.com.

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