This week I am sharing with you the final two steps to this great eight step networking process.
- Thank-You Follow-Up—Follow up with your contact immediately following your encounter to thank them for their time once again. Tell them how much they helped you, referring to the specific information that you found helpful.
A handwritten thank you is better than an email. It will stand out as being more personalized. If your handwriting is really bad, type it, print it, and then sign it by hand. Studies have shown that blue ink makes more of an impression.
Include a business card if you did not give your contact one during your networking/informational meeting. Based on the information you gathered in your informational interview, you can now customize your sales letter and thank-you letter to fit their culture and product needs.
Emailed thank-you notes are more appropriate for the traditional meeting process.
In closing, remember to state exactly what benefit and value you, or your product can add to the organization in solving their problem. Remember, organizations hire people, and purchase product that can solve problems.
- Second Follow-Up—Send a second handwritten thank-you note after you have officially met with the person your initial contact referred you to. Thank them for the referral and give them an update on how the meeting went. Do this about two to three weeks after your initial meeting.
Now would be a good time to send a copy of a relevant article, some information on a competitor, or a piece of industry news you have uncovered that you think would be of interest to your contact.
Also, if there is a business book you have read that you believe pertains to topics that came up in your conversation with them; supply them with its information.
Now that you reached out a second time, keep following up at regular intervals.
It's not whether you get knocked down;
it's whether you get up.
Don't get discouraged. Keep networking and keep trying. Networking is like growing a garden. At first it appears like nothing is happening, but then the ﬂowers slowly start to come up.
The trick is that you have to keep an eye on your garden. You must keep watering the plants so they do not die.
While in your last company, or during a healthier economy, I suspect some of you forgot to "water" your network. As a result, it will be a bit slower for you in the beginning of your rebuilding your prospect pipeline than it will be for those of you who have stayed current with your customer/professional network.
If you fall into the former category, let it be a strong lesson learned. Always stay in touch with your network in some small way. And don't be afraid to reach out at times to help others. As with life, what goes around comes around.
Remember to be genuine throughout this entire networking process. People will sense if you are not being authentic. They will not be eager to help you if they think you're being untruthful, insincere, and disingenuous about caring about them.
People land new business by creating effective networking business leads that can provide introductions to valid decision makers.
If you would need professional help in the area of determining whether or not your team is working together as best as they could. Are they helping your organization sales goals, or slowing the progress down? Please 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 goals and sales growth 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 wonderful successful and productive week ahead.
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Hidden Sales and Revenue Expert tm
TURBOCHARGED Sales, Division of The Remington Group, LLC
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Your Business Consultant
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