As business owners, we must constantly be marketing and promoting ourselves and the products or services we offer. Yes, we obviously want to have an online marketing strategy in place; and depending on our business, we may do video, print, direct mail, email marketing, social media, you name it. But, there is one powerful PR strategy that tends to get overlooked in lieu of the other, more fancy and technical things … the good old-fashioned method of joining or becoming involved in professional organizations!
I’m taking care of a few last-minute housekeeping items today as I prepare to head to Lima, Ohio in a couple of hours, to attend a social media conference. I’m so excited to learn some new tricks for me and my clients, as well as make some great new connections.
Tomorrow I’m heading out to Lima, Ohio for the 5th Annual Social Media Week Lima conference. I’m extra excited because it’s only two hours from home (I don’t have to fly!), I finally get to meet someone I’ve known online for a few years, and it’s the perfect size event for networking! Not too large, not to small, but just right!
Networking use to intimidate the heck out of me. Especially when I’d attend an event where I didn’t know more than one or two people tops – much like this one. What do I say? what do I do? How do I act? What if they don’t like me? Those were the things that went through my head and, sometimes, prevented me from networking at all. But that was then, and this is now.
I’ve been challenged to get out of my comfort zone and find at least two networking events I can attend locally. While I might be an extrovert when surrounded by people I already know, that’s not the case when thrown into a situation with a bunch of people I’ve never met. It’s been a challenge, but I’m doing it, and it’s getting easier. Here are a couple of tips that have worked for me.
This is the time of year when New Year resolutions are made and new goals are set. For some reason, however, we seem to think we always have to be making big hairy resolutions or goals, when the simple act of making subtle changes in your regular routine can have huge pay-offs for your business growth.
Here are a handful of small changes or activities you can start implementing in your business right now, to get 2017 off to a rolling start.
There are many ways to market our services. Most of us use traditional forms of marketing like social media, email marketing and referral marketing (at least traditional in today’s digital world). Many of us also attend in-person events; and some of us invest in sponsoring opportunities so we can get even more out of the event.
Sometimes it’s difficult to get to as many in-person events as we would like to. And unless we’re spending a good bit of moolah and can get up-front and personal on a more focused level like we can when sponsoring an event, it can be difficult to rise above the sea of attendees who might provide the same or similar services we do.
In the early days of my business, when I was office-based and worked only with local clients, I did a good bit of in-person networking.
I was an active member of our county’s Chamber of Commerce and volunteered for our much smaller local Chamber. I also belonged to a local networking group, and volunteered my services to a local Chorale group.
Marketing strategies and plans come in many different shapes and sizes. There is the traditional print marketing we all relied on as our marketing mainstay in days gone by; and often still included in many marketing plans in one way or another. Then there is online marketing. And more specifically, social media marketing; a very successful strategy widely used by most online businesses today.
You know the old saying, “It’s Hard To Soar Like An Eagle When You Are Surrounded By Turkeys.” Well it’s true; and who you choose to surround yourself with can have a big impact on your business health. It’s kind of like “you are what you eat,” but in the physical sense of “you are who you associate with.”
As human beings, we tend to feed off the emotions and feelings of those we are around all of the time. If you constantly surround yourself with people who have no drive or determination to succeed, it’s really difficult to stay determined and keep your own drive to succeed.
On the other hand …
Next week I’ll be traveling to Phoenix for a conference (The Unstoppable Confidence Networking Conference to be precise!). Not simply to attend the conference, but as an event sponsor.
As I make my travel arrangements, I’m getting more and more excited about attending this event. I mean, at the very least, the conference name alone should tell me I’m going to come away from the event with at least one or two great contacts! Not to mention heaps of information and loads of insights that go along with attending live events.