One of the first questions I ask clients is “What’s your low-hanging fruit?”.
People have been turning themselves into pretzels writing blog posts, firing off tweets, and grabbing the attention of “influencers”. Sure, do these things.
But I find professional services are often locally-based. What actually drives business is face-to-face leads groups, networking, sales conversations, and referral-based marketing strategies. Digital has been emerging over the last 10 years, but for many local businesses, it’s still the icing on the cake rather than the cake itself.
S0 I figure why start at the top of the tree when there are solid strategies hanging right in front of you?
1. Power up your CRM.
In the 1955 classic How I Turned Myself from Failure to Success in Selling, Frank Bettger tells how his business flourished when he kept close track of connections, and failed when he didn’t. Keep track of your contacts somewhere. I keep a very long running task list in Asana.com. Sooner or later every item gets crossed off my list. So record everyone you meet. Create a task for each follow-up or put it right in your calendar. Keeping close track of business connections is one best practice that has never gone out of style, and never will.
2. Reconnect with the people you already know.
Everyone knows at least 200 people. If they’re in your CRM, you can review them at a glance. Just running through your list is going to reveal gems you need to polish. Never be afraid to reach out and reconnect. An architect client of mine had fallen out of the habit of attending industry events. In the 8 months since he started doing this again, his business has tripled. Low-hanging fruit.
3. Add value to past and present clients.
One of the reasons I started GoalKeepers was to provide a forum where my clients could connect and learn from each other. I’ve opened it up to the community and it’s proven to be every bit as useful as we imagined. When you write and call your clients regularly, you get to know what they need and want. Then you can find a way to give it to them.