Fall is officially here, everyone’s getting back to business… and believe it or not (I’m not gonna say the “E” word), your clients are ready to do business. They need support with whatever they’ve got going on, and they’re willing to spend money to get it. But will they spend it with you?
Of course, we want that answer to be a resounding YES! Thing is, if you’re not prepared, the opportunities to bring in new business will slip right through your fingers. That’s why it’s the perfect time to get back to marketing basics and cover your bases. Here’s a handy checklist of what you should have in place to make the most of the fall season.
1. Make sure you can clearly communicate WHAT you do and WHO you do it for. Pop quiz: what’s your answer to the perennial question, “So what do you do?” If it’s a little shaky, now is the time to tighten it up a bit. Make sure your “So what do you do?” statements are in language that is simple and easy for everyone to understand – no jargon. Make sure you have them down so that the right one rolls off your tongue when the question is asked.
Remember, your business grows as you grow, and “what you do” will always shift and change. So should your marketing message! If you’ve been channeling the same answer for years, it’s time to revisit.
2. Get in some face time. Trust and relationships are of the utmost importance to your profitability right now, and nothing beats face-to-face meeting for developing both. My coach’s request to you: get thee to some networking events! If you hate networking events (and believe me, I get it – I certainly used to), think of these gatherings as opportunities to connect and share, not schmooze.
Of course, as with all of your marketing strategies, you’ll want to select your events carefully because your time is your most important resource. Choose the events that will connect you with potential clients and partners, and that you think you would enjoy. (Speaking of things you enjoy, places where you already hang out can be some of the best places to make connections, so be present to the networking opportunities that are around you all the time.)
Lastly, the fall seminar season is upon us. Don’t miss the big events in your industry as they are the perfect place to begin lucrative, long-term relationships with movers and shakers.
3. Perfect your follow-up. If you don’t have a system for following up with all of the people you meet, now is the time to start. I’m not talking about your email newsletter here, though you should have one too (yes, as of this writing, I firmly believe that some sort of ezine is not optional). I’m talking about a system to follow up with people who you have met in person and who have expressed interest in working with you now or in the future.
Making the transition from “someone you met at an event” to a client requires reaching out (read: picking up the phone), finding out what’s going on and how you can help. How you set the tone in the beginning, both at the initial meeting and with your follow-up has everything to do with who becomes a client and who doesn’t!
4. Create your Bold Money Goal! Do you know how much money you would like to create in the next 90 days? If not, it’s time to decide! Your Bold Money Goal will help you get very clear on what activities deserve your precious time and what you can let go of. Be very clear as to the amount you wish to make AND what the money is FOR.
5. Create a plan for bringing in new business. It’s all well and good to set a goal, but if there’s no way for that money to get to you, it won’t. When creating a Bold Money Goal, I always create the channels by which the money can come in, as well as setting the goal. What programs will I offer? Who in my current list of contacts would be a great fit for those offerings? How many clients would I like to work with, and is that congruent with my goal?
Notice that my website is nowhere to be found on that list! If you can speak your message clearly (#1) and stay in conversation with your peeps (#2 and #3), you can bring in new business and income immediately. (Curious? For more on creating a plan to meet your Bold Money Goals keep your eyes open for my next free teleseminar call, to be announced this week.)