Here is the next step. Take your time on this one.
- Research—Do your research in advance on the companies and the people you plan to network with. Create a list of 50 target companies/people. Prioritize them into A (20), B, and C categories.
When you are researching the companies you are interested in, see if you can uncover a problem or need they have that your professional background, company product of service and expertise can help solve.
Look on the internet for articles in the Wall Street Journal, industry publications, etc. to help with this research.
Organizations hire people to solve a problem within their company that is not currently being resolved, and purchase products that will help solve a problem for them or their customers.
You must ask yourself, "Where can I add value with my product’s accomplishments?" That is the key!
You need to discover what problem(s) your targeted companies need solved and, if at all possible, how much that problem is costing them in terms of lost sales and revenues.
This information may not be easy to root out, but if you succeed, you have put yourself in a stronger situation going into your meeting. I can't say it strongly enough: research, research, research . . . and then research some more. Have I made myself clear on this issue?
Once you have figured out how you can help the organization you are contacting, you will need to develop a seven-second benefit statement regarding your company’s product or service. Then, when you are in the decision makers presence, you will be able to share that statement with them.
The greater the value your product or service brings to a potential new customer, with respect to solving a problem, the higher the probability you will get hired by them and they will purchase your product. You must be fully prepared with this knowledge prior to networking with your contacts.
How do you arm yourself with this vital information? Go directly to the company's website, to Hoovers, and to the other sources found in your local library that we discussed in previous chapters. (See "Target Companies" chapter.)
Don't forget that you can also use Google: www.google.com .au/advanced_search. Following are some tips on how to best leverage this search engine in your networking efforts:
1) Type the full name of the company you want to research in the top line that is labeled "all these words" (e.g., ABC Manufacture).
2) In the second line, "this exact wording or phrase," type "_________(list the product category they sell, or customer base they sell to, between the quotes"
3) Skip the next line and go to "any of these unwanted words." Type "applies" or "apply."
Look for a company among the returned links from your search results. This will help you uncover leads to previous employees from the company you are interested in contacting in addition to job leads within the organization. With any bit of luck, you will also find phone numbers.
Another technique entails using Google "Advanced Search"
to research people and gain more information about them:
1) Type the name of the company in the first line.
2) On the third line down, type the title of the person two levels up to whom you would be reporting (e.g., "vice president of purchasing").
3) On the fourth line, type "free." Then refine your search again using Google "Advanced Search."
- a) In the top box/line, enter the first and last name of the person.
- b) On the third line, enter the company name.
- c) Press "Advanced Search" for your results.
You can also look up individual's profiles at:
With all these methods, see if you can uncover any interests you have in common with your potential contacts. You can use this point of commonality to start building a relationship with them.
Above all else, you must come off and appear genuine and authentic when reaching out to a new contact. You need to show them you care about them as an individual. That said, try to find a way in which you will be able to help them and add value to their life.
Remember that people help and hire individuals they feel comfortable with, like, and trust. This is the all-important "know, like, and trust" principle that applies to the job search process. Members of your network need to get to know you in some small way to start building the "know" portion of this equation. That way, they can begin to like you and trust you. Then they feel as though you are credible and "believable."
Next week I will share with you Step 5-6 on this great Networking System I have created for you.
If you would need professional help in the area of finding more Business - Business customers to help grow your business and bottom line. Call us at 847-304-4500 to discuss your options on understanding your team more fully in terms of their ability to support and achieve the business success goals you are looking for this year.
Have a great week and productive week, managing the changes and challenges that are currently going on in your company.
I wish you a wonderfully successful and productive week ahead.
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Corporate Success Expert
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Hidden Sales and Revenue Expert tm
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Your B-B Success Consultant, Trainer, Speaker and Author
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