David Knoble, CPA, PLLC

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Networking Strategies

Net­works are strings of wires that con­nect com­put­ers to talk.  Net­work­ing is face-to-face com­mu­ni­ca­tion that con­nects peo­ple.  The key dif­fer­ence is that while there is more com­mu­ni­ca­tion being done on net­works and the inter­net than ever before, Net­working is still a face-to-face busi­ness. Sure, leads can be devel­oped online and you can even gen­er­ate prospects from the inter­net, but true cus­tomer gen­er­a­tion is done in a meet­ing where peo­ple can read body­lan­guage and trade information.

Cus­tomer Fly­pa­per is a new blog I found that has tremen­dous infor­ma­tion on net­work­ing and cus­tomer skills.  If your busi­ness depends on peo­ple, as does mine, you need to spend time look­ing at this blog.

In par­tic­u­lar, the arti­cle that caught my atten­tion was There is Work in Net­work­ing.  This arti­cle goes through a good check­list and strat­egy to pre­pare you for net­work­ing events.  I have added it to my daily arse­nal and I hope you find some value in it as well.  The basics are here for ref­er­ence, but be sure to read the whole article.

  1. Get a list of atten­dees and iden­tify cus­tomer or refer­ral targets
  2. If no advance list, go early and see the nametag list, look for new mem­bers or deci­sion makers
  3. Take plenty of busi­ness cards, pen and paper!
  4. Keep your meet­ings brief and move around the room — mak­ing con­tacts is the impor­tant issue, fol­low up will help keep a poten­tial cus­tomer or referral.
  5. Intro­duce and fol­low up — keep sell­ing out of the con­ver­sa­tion — for now.
  6. Fol­low up as quickly as pos­si­ble after the event, regard­less of the con­tact.  Not every­one will do busi­ness with you, but they will know some­one that will!
© 2009, david.knoble
by David Kno­ble, CPA, PLLC
Serv­ing Non-Profits, Busi­nesses & Indi­vid­u­als
Rock Hill, SC

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