If you want your business to grow you need to focus on your strongest asset. It’s not about the marketing tools at your disposal or the slick advertising campaigns you might run. Your success will rest on something far more fundamental: people. In other words, it’s not about how you do business but who you do business with.
So how do people drive a business strategy? Another keyword: networking. Building a comprehensive, interactive network is vital for your enterprise to thrive. Here are 6 ways this will have considerable impact.
A network will give you pointers about those areas to keep an eye on. You can follow trends, tap into personal interest groups, find out about relevant seminars or workshops, or keep an eye on the latest Facebook groups or LinkedIn connections. These are all tried and tested methods of fine-tuning your network so you can make the disparate elements work to your advantage.
This is not a word you will come across every day but it is actually very straightforward. A successful network will benefit every component involved. If something you have done has assisted a colleague, partner or contact, they will endeavor to return the favor.
This sense of one good deed deserving another is a terrific way to maintain productive business relations. It will encourage the sharing of ideas, and the more reliable contacts you can reach out to as your network grows, the greater the potential benefits of this reciprocal behavior. An affiliate network is a terrific example of diverse ventures collaborating.
After establishing a vibrant communication network, the big impact that will follow naturally is that your reputation will grow. It’s much easier to get known in whatever niche you’re operating in if you have already developed a degree of reliability that can be vouched for by others within this network. Here is where word-of-mouth can become so important. If you have proved to be reliable and capable of delivery within timescale, clients will want to pass on the good news. It’s always worthwhile adding some of the more glowing testimonies to your website, too. Never feel as if this would seem pushy. Business is not about false modesty; it’s all about selling you and your business.
Connecting with potential clients isn’t always plain sailing, and you will find there are some who, for whatever reason, simply don’t want to play ball. Facebook requests might be ignored; meeting invitations declined. There are two ways to look at this. Firstly, you might get pointers about different ways of approaching potential customers. Secondly, you’ll learn from being rejected, not only by becoming more mature as a business person but from becoming even more dedicated to those loyal customers you can already count on.
Another huge element of enterprise success is in maintaining a prominent profile. This is where you use your network to keep in touch with customers. You should never look upon business in terms of it being based on a number of individual transactions, no matter how successful each one of those may have been. For any online enterprise to be at the top of its game, it needs to be interactive, constantly reaching out to existing customers to keep them abreast of product developments.
Your online presence should rely on a database at the back-end that is updated with client details. Blogging is equally crucial. But your greatest potential tool can be illustrated by considering the success of sites that provide free online dating services which marry an important service with a strong social network.
In the pre-Internet days business people relied on handing over their cards to clients. Nowadays networking has made this process far more resilient. It can be used to build long-lasting relationships, based on trust and mutual respect. And you don’t have to be focused on immediate developments. The contacts you make with your online network will remain viable opportunities, liable to kick into action at any point.
Unlike those business cards that can be shoved into drawers or simply lost, if you’ve gone to the trouble of adding someone to your network by exchanging contact details, then they’ll be able to call on your services again at any point. It’s so much easier to stay in touch when all you have to do is consult their details within an itemized address list in your computer.