My social feeds have become breeding grounds for nothing more than overly self-promoted business owners ‘selling’ their services.
They bring no value to the table.
In fact, these posts see little or no engagement with the broader network and have the same lacking impact on your business.
During the last five years I have spent a significant proportion of my time networking and meeting business owners throughout the UK, and as a result, I have heard my fair share of short business pitches.
The first 10 seconds of which often start in the same way as the above mentioned social media posts begin, with self-promotion.
The remaining 50 seconds result in my mind switching off completely.
Thinking back to roughly this time last year, I visited a networking session where each member (20 were in the room) were allowed five, yes five whole minutes to discuss their business and ‘promote’ its products and services.
I remembered one and his business.
They showed personality, made me relate to them as individuals and did not try to sell me anything.
Of course, prompting me to interact with them and continue the conversation after the introductions, with the old age exchanging of business cards.
Those business relationships developed further with direct introductions to third party contacts, and our networks were growing in value.
Too many people view business networking as a direct form of sales and become disillusioned when they don’t make a deal and blame the group, location or individuals attending. These are not networkers; they are a door to door salesman.
People don’t like to be sold to, but they love to buy. Jeffrey Gitomer
Polished sales speeches and business breakdowns are a great thing in the right situation. Business networking is not the place.
At my peak of business networking, I was meeting people who had brilliant products and provide a fantastic service every week. I may not need those products or services then and there, but when I do, I know who to go to.
Not only that but because we took the time to get to know each other, I would happily refer them to another member of my network at the drop of a hat if the time and situation occurred.
Providing business owners with a problem that makes them want to speak directly with you afterwards will generate you more awareness, and sales opportunities than trying to sell to the entire room in 60 seconds.
I can attest to this first hand.
Every business is different.
They all have different goals to achieve.
Getting to know those that run the business, what motivates them and what challenges they face first and foremost will do more for you than anything else.