It has often been said that looking for a job is just like dating. You know in your gut when you think you’ve found “the one.” Well, I believe that the same can be said for prospecting for new clients and customers as an entrepreneur.
When you’re out meeting new people at conferences or social networking online, you’re looking for people with whom you have enough chemistry to have that first initial meeting. From a simple phone call or e-mail exchange, your goal is to then go for coffee or lunch to get to know and understand each other. Even if you are selling to customers instead of clients, the desired outcome is the same. Ultimately, we are trying to build long term relationships (or partnerships) with our customers, rather than “acquire” them.
Perhaps, just like in love, that’s the difference between people who are looking for commitment versus those that are looking for a one night stand. Below are some links to great blogs from Canadian startups and entrepreneurs about fostering relationships and impressing customers and clients:
- 6 Tips for Building Lasting Relationships with Clients, Freshbooks.com
- The Bottom Line for Startups: Delight or Die, Mark Evans
- Don’t Forget to be Human, Mitch Joel
Some of the key lessons from these stories are to communicate openly, go out of your way to make your customers happy, and be yourself. This advice resonates with any great relationship. Do these sound possible for your business? If you have other stories worth sharing on this blog, please pass them along.
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