Some small business owners are starting to believe the myth that online social networks are making it unnecessary to personally meet with clients anymore. But in reality, face-to-face meetings are the most effective way to build strong relationships with customers, or anyone for that matter.
Let’s not totally overlook the importance of using online networking to help your business. Social media marketing can be coupled with face-to-face marketing as well. Since social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have already made their stamp in the business world, why not work with them?
Melissa Strong, the owner and designer of SoChick! Handbags & Embroidery, uses social media platforms, like Pinterest, to promote her business online. But she also realizes the value of customer interaction as well. “Networking, both online and in my local community, has been crucial to gaining new customers,” says Strong, a very social person who enjoys the personal aspect of her business. “You have to put yourself out there to bring in business.”
In August 2009, Strong started SoChick as a part-time business in Havelock, NC, after teaching herself how to sew. Her venture turned into a full-time business in 2010 when her family and friends started asking if they could buy her handbags and embroideries as gifts.
“I feel that letting my personality shine through really helps me connect with my customers, and potential customers, when they see the real person behind the business,” explains Strong. “When customers know that a real human being, with real interests and ideas, is running the show, it makes a connection with folks that will help them keep your business in mind.”
How to Make a Personal Connection with Customers
This Entrepreneur.com article provides seven ways to build relationships with prospects that lead to more sales:
It isn’t always enough to create and promote an outstanding product or service. Often, your sales approach matters just as much as what you’re selling. The most successful entrepreneurs create a connection with the customer by bringing their own personal touch to the sales process.
“People buy from people that they like and can relate to,” says Adrian Miller, a sales trainer based in Port Washington, N.Y. “When business owners overlook the importance of that personal connection, they run the risk of losing the prospect to someone else–usually someone who took the time to create a relationship and help the prospect buy something rather than trying to simply sell to them.”
Read the entire article to discover seven tips on salesmanship that can help you develop that special rapport with potential customers.
- How to Increase Online Traffic by Going Offline (thesmallbusinessplaybook.com)
- Connect With Your Customers Offline In The Real World (kellerfay.com)
- Recommendations are What Drives Your Business. Remember to Ask for Them. (forbes.com)