Most coaches and consultants as well as small business owners I talk to admit they are terrible at networking but they know they need to do it.
The real issue is that people are looking for clients instead of just finding prospects. The other issue is not having a game plan.
If you follow what I am about to suggest you can get 10 business card at your next networking opportunity in 30 minutes or less. If your conversion rates are just average that should be at least one client.
Don’t stand around and wait for people to come to you. Pick someone that you want to meet and introduce yourself by name and get the name of the person you’re talking to. In the next 30 seconds, find out what they do, what kind of business they have, and how long they’ve been doing it. In the next 3 minutes, ask questions that get below the surface. Dig deep and look for emotion. What challenges to do they have, what problems are they trying to solve? When the 3 minutes are up, ask them for their business card. You’ll never be refused. Thank them for sharing with you and promise to call them this week. Then, politely excuse yourself and move on to the next person.
Now, if you don’t follow up with them you have just wasted all your time. So follow up and schedule a complimentary coaching session or strategic breakthrough and take it from there.
If you have any questions or would like to share what works for you when you network leave a comment.
Michael Pedone, creator of Sales Buzz, is a master at sales especially as it pertains to cold calling and phone sales.
In a recent post he gave some great advice for successful prospecting. Go check it out.