Week 45 Use your influence to solve problems
What's the fun of being well networked, highly regarded and an expert in your field if you don't use it? Your assignment this week is to find a member of your network who has a problem and help them solve it. How do you do that? Ask them. Look around. Do some homework. Talk to other people in the same industry.
Once you uncover a problem and decide who your preferred target is, think of some creative ways you can use your professional status to help them. Possibilities:
．You might write a letter of support.
．You might support some cause they are active in.
．You might write a letter to the editor of a publication.
．You could petition your local city council for changes.
．You might write to the editor a trade journal.
．You could launch a public showing of support on some matter.
．You could act as a catalyst for change in some way.
．You might approach others and enlist their support.
．You can do anything that is appropriate to get involved.
Week 44 Capitalize on other companies you deal with
Job #1 for this week is to draw up a list of the companies you do business with on a regular basis. If you follow the money trail, you might be spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars each month as a customer of that business. Now turn it around and consider what those businesses can be doing to help you, their loyal customer. They might be willing to contribute something to your newsletter. Or they might display your business cards on their counter. Or perhaps they will sponsor your next networking event. Pick one establishment and approach them with some ideas and see where that takes you. The worst they can do is say no, but the upside potential is quite substantial.
Week 43 Adopt the attitude of a host
Work this week at changing your mind-set. Whenever you attend a networking event, don't approach it like the majority of people would. Instead, act like a host. Get there early and meet the people who are in charge. Learn the layout of the venue and get some idea of the flow of planned events. Find out who is expected to attend. Then greet others who arrive later and help them get into the flow of everything. Set a goal to introduce at least three people to someone they have never met before and then sit back and wait for them to respond in kind. Act more like an event host and less like a desperate networker trolling for business.
Week 42 Always ask for feedback from clients
Your assignment this week is to ask your clients for feedback. Ask them to identify your business's strengths and weaknesses. Then get into action making things better. Create simple tools (perhaps involving an online survey) that you can use to periodically check in with customers and get their ideas on improvements they'd like to see. Even better, integrate a feedback process right into your sales system.
Week 41 Don't be afraid to toot your own horn
When you meet with your word-of-mouth marketing team, the three questions they are most likely to ask you are:
．"How's it going?"
Your assignment this week is to come up with better answers than: "Things are going great. I'm swamped!" or "Fine. " You don't want people to walk away thinking you're too busy to attend to their referrals, so you need to have some good answers ready to roll in advance. Some suggestions:
"How's it going?"
"Life is good. My business is moving ahead, but I'm always interested in new opportunities. "
"Well, I'm involved in an interesting training course at the moment that has brought some new ideas in mind. I'm also looking for opportunities to publish some articles of my own.
"Sales are up as I've got eight new clients this year, but my goal was to get twenty. I'm also looking for new staff. "
Week 40 Write a personal introduction
6When people in your word-of-mouth marketing team talk about you to their friends and associates, they probably don't know what to say. Help them out. Your assignment this week is to write a personal introduction you can give them to use. Key bits of information to include would be:
．The name of your business.
．What you offer.
．Some of your credentials and accomplishments.
．Your mission statement or purpose.
．Noteworthy clients you have helped lately.
．Other interesting facts and ideas.
Week 39 Write down two success stories
Spend some time this week putting down on paper some stories in which your business is the hero and you achieve some amazing things for customers. Ham it up, but be factual and accurate in what you say. You then take these stories and circulate them to your word-of-mouth marketing team. As they read your stories, it will jog their memories on other people in similar situations you might be able to help. It will also sharpen in their mind their view of who your perfect client is, which can't be a bad thing at all.