Crazy Networking

networkingI live in Toronto and went to the last one of the season and quite frankly, I had a blast. What is it? It is run on a format and don’t quote me on it (c’mon, I have only been to one), but is very organized so when you enter, you pay $20 and are given a seat number to be assigned to.

Then it is floor time in which people all chat with one another before the networking meeting begins. Everyone was very friendly and more open than other networking meetings I have previously attended. Then I heard a buzzer and searched for my seat.

I was seated with two men…. A carpet retailer and a PR agent. One had been there before, and he explained the format. We were to go out on the floor and advocate for each other and bring back cards for people who were interested in the person’s service.

Wow, that certainly took the edge off and sounded like a lot of fun. It was my turn to explain what I did. I am a copywriter and serve just about anybody, so I suggested they look for people with websites, or brochures or in need of writing.

The carpet man went out on my behalf, and for some reason, I didn’t think he really understood what I did but sure enough, he came back with a fist full of cards and described each potential client to me.

Next, the PR man went out and talked me up, and then returned with more cards for me once again. Eureka!

Now it was my turn. The pressure was on me to do as good a job as they had done for me. I shoved my way out into the crowd and grabbed the first person I saw and started to ask if they had thought of purchasing a carpet that year and yes, they had. My heart soared. It was as easy as that. The only hard part was when I looked around the room and everyone was engaged, and I couldn’t find a soul to talk with. So I indeed came back with a fist full of cards for my partners.

What surprised me was the level of excitement I was able to maintain working the floor for somebody else. I was really a pro, and just kept going even after rejection. I was unstoppable. It was so much fun, and everyone was so receptive.

Afterwards there was a speech by an entrepreneur, and then the organizer talked to us about follow up. He reminded us to be polite and open when someone from Crazy Networking called and to be sure to take their calls.

The meeting came to a close, but there was an optional lunch and more time for networking on our own.

I have never been so avid about networking until I went to this event. Also, unlike other networking meetings that start at 6:30 in the morning, this one started at 9:30, which is perfect for someone like me.

I have already gotten a writing contract out it and am in negotiations for something else.

So check the Meet-ups in your area to see if you have one, and if you don’t, think about starting one. They will be successful. I am crazy for Crazy Networking!

Most Sure-Fire Proven Customer List Building Tips to Grow your Business!!!

February 27, 2012 by  
Filed under Coaching, List Building Strategies

For Coaches, Consultants, Advisors, Mentors, Entrepreneurs who are still confused about which List Building Strategies to use!!!

It’s no secret that building your customer list is one of the most challenging parts of building your business!!

In today’s uncertain economy and in building a business, list-building strategies often spell the difference between failure and success. If you’re like most entrepreneurs, you’ve probably heard gazillion things you can do to start building your customer and client list.

The great news is that entrepreneurs can use several free or low cost strategies that work like a charm- the proven formula is in doing them right. While any of the marketing tips in this series will work independently, combining two or more will skyrocket your results.

  • Develop a Social Media Presence-If you don’t know this, it is the best kept secret! Entrepreneurs can create accounts on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and can regularly communicate with prospects. According to Michele Scism, you could have 1000 followers in just 30 days and that’s because it’s an effective and inexpensive way to maintain top of-mind-status with potential clients and customers. A couple of things to keep in mind when social networking:
  • Let personality shine. It’s no secret that people want to do business with people, so implementing personal touches is a good thing. From a favorite football team to a favorite pet, prospects will begin to like and trust entrepreneurs they can get to know (and if they don’t they’re probably not an ideal client anyway.) It’s a fact of life that when you are posting you need to give something of value. Suppose you were a color expert you could add that the color blue connotes trust and that is why banks and the police use it.
  • Keep an eye on the clock. The ugly truth about writing on social media is that time just flies by. Between creating new posts, checking others posts, responding here and there, an hour can go by in what seems like mere seconds. In other words it can be an effective means for customer list building but not if it means it is taking up more time than it should. The best kept secret is to use a timer and only allow yourself so much time on social media.
  • Tie social networking in with other marketing materials. Another best kept secret…Start a conversation on Twitter or Facebook, and direct followers to its end on a blog or a website. Or start a conversation in an article and direct readers to a Facebook post with more information.

© 2011 Sarah Wood

 About the Author: Sarah Jo Wood is founder of Evolving Advisors Inc. and author of ‘How to turn a No or a Maybe into a Yes!”  Her coaching program teaches entrepreneurs like you to overcome objections so you can sign up all the clients you want, fill your practice, and increase your bottom line.  To begin supercharging your sales, download your complimentary sales package today at www.evolvingadvisors.com.

Becoming a Sought After Speaker

Within 20 days from today you could become a sought after speaker. Are you ready for that? Are you tired of working hard to get each client and not getting booked, even though you are an amazing public speaker or trainer? Even if you are super social-networking savvy, even if you are great at follow-up and brilliant at e-mail marketing, you are still missing out if you have not yet mastered how to use public speaking to easily attract clients.

The proven formula to deliver a speech and come home with clients is both an art and a science. Caterina Rando has the best kept secrets for growing your business and is going to graciously share her 20 years of experience with you on February 18-19 to do just that. She is a best-selling author, an award winning keynote speaker, trainer, business coach and a publisher. Her book has been translated into 11 other languages. She is world renowned with an overwhelming array of repeat clients who have consistently made mini-fortunes from following her teachings.

In this dynamic two-day event, Caterina will share her ten step system on how to use public speaking, tele-seminars and webinars to make your business THRIVE. “When I started my business in 1995 I had no marketing budget and started to use public speaking to grow my business. Since then I have studied and, more importantly, tested and retested the best ways to use public speaking to easily attract clients. I will share all my top secrets and strategies with you here. These are the same ideas that have helped many of my clients quickly double and triple their income.” Read more

Successful Autoresponder Secrets of Marketing Superstars

January 29, 2012 by  
Filed under Coaching, Copywriting, List Building Strategies

Once prospective customers give you their name and email address in exchange for some sort of free gift (usually a PDF report, or possibly a sample chapter of your ebook, group training program, etc.), your job as a marketer isn’t over; in fact, it’s just beginning!  Now it’s time to put email marketing strategies to work as you begin the work of building a relationship with people who could potentially become customers.

And you can do that with little time or effort by scheduling a series of autoresponder emails that get sent to new subscribers automatically, as soon as they sign up for your newsletter. These autoresponder emails can be scheduled in increments of your choosing; for example you can send out one autoresponder email immediately, with another to follow 3, 5, or 7 days after the initial sign-up. To be honest, the frequency isn’t as important as what you say in the emails. So, here are a few tips to help ensure a successful autoresponder email sequence:

Successful Autoresponders Tip #1: Ease Subscribers into a Buying Relationship               

It’s tempting to schedule a series of sales-heavy promotional emails once you have an audience in the form of a newsletter subscriber, but that’s about the quickest way to send readers unsubscribing in droves; it’s certainly not an effective long-term business growth strategy. You’re better off sending a mixture of emails promoting your products and services and emails that offer helpful resources. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t tell readers where they can learn more, even in your content-rich emails. For instance, let’s say you have a 7-part eCourse for sale. You can take one short but sweet tip from each of the 7 sections and send them out over the course of, say, one month. At the end of each tip, you might say something like, “Would you like to learn more? Click here to access the full lesson” to which you would attach a link to the eCourse sales page.

Successful Autoresponders Tip #2: Treat Subscribers as You Would Like to Be Treated

All too often, marketers see only numbers when they look at their newsletter lists, forgetting that there’s a living, breathing human being on the receiving end of the email. Don’t make that mistake! Instead, write your emails as if you’re writing to a friend, using friendly language that shows how much you care about your prospective clients’ wellbeing (not just their money).

Successful Autoresponders Tip #3: Give Them a (Gentle) Nudge

Because you do care about your prospective clients’ wellbeing, you care that they get the help they need, rather than let them struggle all alone. And because so many of us are procrastinators by nature, you have to offer incentive for fast action. Otherwise, as much as subscribers may be interested in your product, life always seems to get in the way…and before they know it, they’ve completely forgotten about the product/service, and you’ve lost a customer. The best way to get around this is to offer a simple incentive, like a special discount that expires at a set time, or something to that affect.

If you put these tips in place, you will be much more successful at using an autoresponder email marketing strategy to attract more clients and grow your business.

Sarah Jo Wood is founder of Evolving Advisors Inc. and author of ‘How to turn a No or a Maybe into a Yes!”  Her coaching program teaches entrepreneurs like you to overcome objections so you can sign up all the clients you want, fill your practice, and increase your bottom line.  To begin supercharging your sales, download your complimentary sales package today at www.evolvingadvisors.com.

2 Quick & Easy Marketing Strategies for Creating a Memorable Free Giveaway

January 7, 2012 by  
Filed under Coaching, List Building Strategies

In today’s business community, there have been revolutionary steps made in strategies for marketing thanks to the internet, smart phones, and all the new gadgets and widgets that roll out each year. All of these have made it much easier to implement a marketing strategy that allows small businesses to obtain the e-mail addresses and contact information for potential customers, also called leads, by offering what is often referred to as a “free giveaway.” Once you have leads in your database, you can follow up with them until they either become customers or remove themselves from your mailing list.

Offering a free giveaway to the group of people isn’t as easy as it sounds. The gift has to be really juicy in content and give something away that normally would cost money.

The client knows the intention is that the intention of giving their name is a quality list building technique to put you in touch with prospective clients. And a free giveaway provides them with an easy way to become familiar with your company and through which to preferably begin building a long-term relationship.

Free Giveaway Strategy #1: Give them a taste of what you offer

Ideally, you will use your free giveaway to not only attract clients who are new to you but to also set yourself apart from the competition. One of the best (and easiest) ways to do this is to choose a gift that is a representative example of what you supply, free examples of what you do with juicy tidbits of information), or a free E-book). Coaches or consultants may offer a complimentary consultation to give potential clients a taste, if you will, of what working with you will be like. If the coach specializes even better because they can then draw in a niche.

Free Giveaway Strategy #2: Become a welcome presence in their everyday lives

Another great marketing strategy for list-building purposes is to give away something that your prospective customers can use often…therefore keeping your company in their mind of a regular basis. If you give away something useful, like a yearly calendar branded with your company’s name and logo, for example, there’s a good chance your prospects will hang that calendar in their home or office, and they’ll think of you (even if it’s on a subconscious level) every time they see it. You’ll inadvertently become a trusted (and welcome) presence in their lives. Other examples of daily-use gifts are mousepads, bookmarks, pens, etc., all branded with your company’s logo so that you stay top of mind whenever they need what you offer. If you don’t have the budget right now to mail out such giveaways to everyone who becomes a lead, consider running a monthly contest, where one lucky winner each month will receive a mousepad/bookmark/etc. To enter, people need to provide their name and email address…which enters them into your mailing database for future follow-up. Quizzes, surveys and contests are all great tools.

Even if your giveaway is merely a small sample of the services you provide, your prospective customers will feel like they are renders loyal. Always treat your clients (the ones who have already bought from you at least once) first to your incentive programs and make up special programs just for them, it is easier to keep a client than to find a new client. To make them feel important enough to get a glimpse of what you have to offer, and it shows them you are confident enough in your products and services to know that a small sample will give them reason to return. The challenge, however, comes in creating a marketing strategy that will cause your customers to take notice, so get creative with your free giveaway idea. And then trust that what begins as a simple free gift can end with a customer who will return for a lifetime.

Sarah Wood is founder of Evolving Advisors Inc. and author of ‘How to turn a No or a Maybe into a Yes!” She is a sales and marketing coach serving professionals who are struggling to attract more clients and increase income. Her coaching program teaches how to overcome objections so you can sign up all the clients you want and increase your bottom line. She’s been in sales and marketing for over 20+ years and awarded consistently. She is a dual citizen of the U.S.A. but lives in Toronto, Canada, with her b/f and four pets.

Three Ways that StumbleUpon Can Ease the Sales Process

You’ve likely already heard that Twitter and Facebook, the social networking heavyweights, can help you to connect with clients, but did you know that StumbleUpon can help you get not only free web traffic but also leave you with faster results by getting laser-focused on your niche market?

Here’s how: When you sign up for a free StumbleUpon account, you’re asked to select your interests from a selection of topics. If you’re a parenting coach, for instance, you can choose topics like “parenting,” “kids,” “pregnancy/birth,” and other family-related topics, and quickly connect with others who have similar interests. Which is great for effective business growth strategies, because you’re connecting directly with people that you already know have kids and are therefore prime candidates for your parenting coach products and services.

So, how can StumbleUpon ease the sales process?

1)      You can start to build relationships with people in your target market. By connecting with people who have similar interests, you can share in those interests and begin building genuine relationships with your ideal clients. By the time you reach the sales cycle, such as by inviting them to join you in a sales consultation, the people you’re consulting with have seen you around and have already began to know, like, and trust you (the 3 factors that everyone knows are crucial to a successful sales process).

2)      You will be able to drive highly targeted web traffic to your website. Once you begin building relationships with those in your niche by recommending valuable resources, you can start adding in some content that can be found on your own website/blog…and therefore invite people in your niche to visit your website. Because of the popularity of StumbleUpon, you can get quick exposure to hundreds or thousands of prospective clients, and as a result drive tons of targeted web traffic (you know, those people who have a genuine interest in your topic of expertise…and are therefore more likely to buy than just random searchers) to your website. Then just be sure that your website displays your product/service offerings so those visiting can see how you can help them. You might also offer a free consultation so you can begin engaging your prospective clients in the sales process!

3)      You can connect directly with both prospective clients and referral partners. Your free StumbleUpon account comes with a profile that you can personalize, and you can become “friends” with other people who share similar interests as you, similar to the idea of “following” other Twitter accounts. You can also directly message those that become your StumbleUpon friends, which can be a great way to reach out to people that you may be interested in working with, either as clients or as referral partners (other professionals who may be interested in promoting your business in return for you promoting theirs).  But of course, remember to ease into the sale; sending someone a message asking them to buy from you before you have built a relationship can cause them to distrust and/or dislike you…dramatically undermining your efforts at using StumbleUpon to grow your business.

Last but not least, know that once you begin building relationships with other StumbleUpon users, it becomes your responsibility to (gradually) turn a follower into a customer. The more you use the service, the more traffic you can generate directly to your website…where visitors will be able to purchase the products and services you have to offer.

Sarah Wood is founder of Evolving Advisors Inc. and author of ‘How to turn a No or a Maybe into a Yes!”  She is a sales and marketing coach serving professionals who are struggling to attract more clients and increase income.  Her coaching program teaches how to overcome objections so you can sign up all the clients you want and increase your bottom line.  She’s been in sales and marketing for over 20+ years and awarded consistently.  She is a dual citizen of the U.S.A. but lives in Toronto, Canada, with her b/f and four pets. You can find her at www.evolvingadvisors.com