You cannot build a real business on networking alone. Why? Because networking alone is not a sales strategy.
During the past ten years I’ve worked with over 400 lawyers. Most know nothing about business development. The members of this population believe “marketing” or “sales” or “business development” refers to networking.
Don’t believe me?
Try this: Walk into any law firm and find the person in charge. Ask them what their sales strategy is. At first you may get some double talk about doing a good job and being a good lawyer and that’s all you need. After you push through the ignorance of that statement, you’ll hear something about networking.
To keep my inbox from being flooded with long-winded complaints, let me state for the record: Yes, being a good lawyer is required in order to attract and retain clients but it is NOT a strategy.
Similarly, networking is a good idea but networking alone is not a sales strategy.
Professionals (especially lawyers) see networking as a sales strategy because they don’t know how to sell and/or they fear selling. If you are a business owner or a sales professional, you don’t have the luxury of this ignorance.
You need to do more than just network in order to have an effective sales strategy. Here’s why:
Networking employs no leverage. You are only one person. You can only meet so many people in a day, a week, and a month. Even if everyone you meet sends you business, you cannot grow at a sufficient pace in order to make payroll and cover the costs of a real business.
Networking is time intensive. There is no way to generate passive leads from networking. I call the income that comes from these leads RELATIONSHIP REVENUE. Networking produces revenue only when you are actively involved in it. If you get tied up in operations (or in handling the day-to-day activity of your business) there is no new revenue generated because you simply don’t have time.
Most people suck at Networking. Let’s face it, sometimes you get in a bad mood. You don’t feel like talking to people. But if you’re reliant upon networking, you’ve got to go out and shake some hands and pretend to be charming. You’re not that good an actor.
So what do you do?
Here is a viable sales strategy for any business, professional and sales leader:
First: Begin communicating on a weekly basis with everyone you know. You can use direct mail. You can hire 1000 telephone sales reps. You can use an email system. I don’t care how you do it, but this is a way to make sure people who currently know you, like you, and trust you, do not forget about you.
Second: Add everyone you know into this follow-up system.
Third: Pick an additional method for client attraction and begin using it immediately. There are five viable methods that employ leverage. They are:
- Social Media
- Your Personal Website
Fourth: Keep networking when you have time and add anyone you meet to the system you develop in the first step.
This is a viable sales strategy.
I know. There are a lot of moving parts. You are confused because you don’t know how to get started. You want to ignore this because it seems like a lot of work.
Most people who read this will do just that – ignore me.
Some will get frustrated and angry and project that anger on to me. That’s fine.
If you are still with me, I’m going to help you out.
I’ve written a new book that outlines the step-by-step process to developing this sales strategy and implementing it – all of it – in your business.
You can use this if you are a lawyer or a sales representative selling country club memberships or anything in between.
The book is titled The 60 Second Sale and it is outstanding – but don’t believe me – here’s what the experts have to say about it:
What People Are Saying About The 60 Second Sale
“This is a powerful, practical book based on years of experience that will enable you to make more sales, earn more money, and enjoy greater success than ever before!”
Sales Teacher, Trainer, Expert and Author of The Psychology of Selling, more than 1,000,000 copies sold in 39 languages
“All things being equal relationships win. All things being unequal, relationships still win. Read The 60 Second Sale and learn how to make all things unequal and build a competitive advantage.”
Author of The Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales
“The 60 Second Sale shows you how to get inside the mind of the buyer, keep their needs front and center, and help them become more successful. This makes you their natural choice. It’s brilliant!”
Senior Lecturer, Harvard Business School
Author, The Sales Acceleration Formula
“Mastering the Complex Sale requires making an emotional connection, understanding your client, and deepening client relationships based on trust and mutual respect. Dave Lorenzo’s book is a step-by-step guide to those critical conversations enabling you to connect with clients for life!”
Author of Mastering the Complex Sale
CEO, Prime Resource Group
“The 60 Second Sale is a field manual for anyone who wants to connect with prospects and develop deep profitable relationships with clients – FAST!”
Author of Sales EQ
CEO of Sales Gravy
Here’s the problem: You cannot read the book until July 2018. That’s when the publisher – John Wiley and Sons – will begin shipping it to retailers.
But I want to help you so I’ve come up with a solution to get this information to you right now.
I’m going to do webinars and a live event, in advance of the book’s publication date. You can attend one of the webinars, come to the live event and get a session with me – one-on-one over the phone or in your office or both. All you have to do is preorder the book.
Here are some of the great opportunities for me to help you develop and implement a sales strategy based upon The 60 second Sale:
The 60 Second Sale Preorder Offers – Expiration May 1, 2018
Offer 1: Preorder 5 books on Amazon and send me the receipt and I will invite you to participate in a webinar on developing effective sales strategy.
Offer 2: Preorder 10 books on Amazon and I will invite you to participate in a webinar on developing effective sales strategy and you all get a one-on-one call with me to help with implementation – Value $750
Offer 3: Preorder 20 books on 800CEOread.com and I will invite you to participate in a webinar on developing effective sales strategy and you all get a one-on-one call with me to help with implementation and you will be able to participate in ½ day event I’m hosting to help you write a sales plan and implement it (June 26).
Offer 4: Preorder 30 books on 800CEORead.com
Participate in full day even in June and come to Marlin’s game June 26, 2018
Offer 5: Preorder 50 Books on 800CEORead.com and you receive all the benefits listed above plus I will do a learn at lunch in your office with up to 10 people on a mutually convenient date (this includes travel!!!).
Offer 6: Preorder 100 Books on 800CeoRead.com and I will do everything list above plus I will do a full day of training on site at your office with up to 40 people on a mutually convenient date (this also includes travel!!!).
These are some outstanding offers. All you need to do is order the book and then reach out to me to schedule the bonuses. You can call me (786) 436-1986 or email me DLorenzo at DLorenzo dot com. Replace the words with the appropriate symbols.
Networking alone is not a sales strategy. You can do better.
Many business leaders say they attract new clients by networking. I hate that word. Networking. When most of us think about networking we think about going to meetings with groups of people passing out business cards, shaking hands and trying to sell something.
That’s not what I mean by networking.
True networking involves understanding the value someone provides and matching that value with someone who needs it.
Whenever I meet someone new I ask them two key questions:
“What do you do better than everyone else?”
“What’s keeping you awake at night?”
Then I spend the rest of my career matching people up – paring strengths with issues.
When you do this, you develop deep relationships with people because they know you care about them.
You demonstrate this caring by:
1). Helping people use their greatest talent
2). Helping people solve their greatest problem
This is such a simple concept it begs an additional question:
“Why don’t more people do this?”
My answer is probably something you would not expect…
More people don’t do this because it requires emotional investment in others and diligent effort in furtherance of the agenda of another human being with the promise of nothing in return.
This is called having an external orientation.
You must be focused on other people to use this successfully.
What results can you expect?
Three out of five times (60% of the time) people will do nothing. You will, in some cases, change their lives, their businesses and their future. And people will either not remember you did it or they will pretend to not remember. As a result, you will receive noting in return other than the satisfaction of having made this person’s situation better.
One time in five (20% of the time) the person will be grateful. He will express this gratitude to you. That will feel good. At some point in the future this person will (either actively or passively) do something that benefits you in some way. These people will be loyal to you for life. You can commit offensive acts and these people will defend you. This person will feel a deep emotional bond with you forever.
One time in five (20% of the time) is a magical experience. This person will move heaven and earth and deliver some sort of value to you in excess of anything you could have ever done for him.
This article describes the single greatest success philosophy I have ever learned and practiced.
Just about everything I have accomplished in my career, to this point, has come in part because of this philosophy.
I’m sharing it with you because someone once shared it with me and I put it into practice and it changed my life.
You need to ask yourself:
“Do I want my life and my business to improve dramatically?”
“Am I willing to help others selflessly in order to achieve that result?”
If the answers to those questions are: “Yes,” then you must go out and begin to put this philosophy into practice.
Most people won’t.
But if you do, you must promise you will, one day, pass along this external orientation strategy to as many people as possible. Because it not only improves businesses, it can change the course of people’s lives and make the world we live in slightly better.
Here are three additional articles you can use to grow your business:
This audio program will change the way you think about sales. Listen today and make more money tomorrow.
In business everyone takes risks. This article will help you take smart risk and limit the downside.
This is how to make something happen in your business and in your life.
Have you ever wondered why some people always achieve excellence in everything they do? We have all come across people who, no matter what life throws at them, always seem to succeed. Sure they take some lumps from time to time. Yes, they have an occasional setback. But ultimately, they are winners.
There are many things you can do to elevate your performance. There are dozens of things you can do to help advance your career and grow your business. There is one thing that may just be more important than all others. There is one thing that truly separates the good from the great.
That one thing is the people who surround you. I’m talking about the people who you allow into your life both personally and professionally. I’m not talking about your family. You don’t get to pick them. I am talking about your friends and business associates. If you want to fulfill your potential both as a business leader and as a person, you need to surround yourself with people who are better, smarter, and quicker than you.
Reverse Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is that thing our parents always warned us about. As a leader looking to build a successful business, surrounding yourself with peers who are smart, aggressive, ethical entrepreneurs is a great way to stimulate your personal growth.
Each of us is judged by the company we keep. I am not talking about perception. I am talking about something real. Something more important. Your growth. Look at any entrepreneur whose business has stopped growing and you will find stagnant people around him.
Avoid Feeding Your Own Ego
It’s human nature. We all want to be the smartest, most successful person in the room. But that kind of thinking is a recipe for failure. I would rather be the dumbest person in a room full of geniuses than be a genius in a room full of dummies.
Here is your action item for this week:
Go out and make a list of the successful people you know but have not interacted with in a while (if ever). Pursue them like a high school girl pursues a matinee idol. Establish a relationship with them and learn as much as you can.
What does not grow (intellectually or physically) begins to die. Said another way…
The day you stop learning is the day you stop earning…
Surround yourself with excellence and you will shape your destiny.
Here are three additional resources you can use to elevate your performance in sales:
If you want to get your sales going in a positive direction host a client appreciation event. This is your guide to making that work for you.
Are you easy to work with? Do clients like dealing with you and your team? Is your business process straightforward? If the answer to any of these questions is “no” you need to read this article right now.
What you charge tells people who you are. You may not like it but your fee says a lot about you. Everything you know about your fee will change.
Last week I spoke at a conference for attorneys. After one of my sessions, I met a few of the attendees in the restaurant and they invited me over to their table for a drink. As you can imagine, the subject of sales came up. They wanted to specifically talk about networking.
A sharp guy from a big, successful firm said:
“Dave, come on. How hard can it be? You go to a couple of meetings. You shake some hands. You hand out a few business cards and when people need you, they call you.
Obviously this was not someone who had done much successful networking.
There was some banter about how those large meetings were usually a waste of time and how people at those meetings usually wound up talking to folks they already knew.
All the while, I listened intently and sipped my drink. Then, when someone asked for my networking strategy, I gave it to him…and it blew his mind.
Here’s what I told the folks sitting around the table:
Networking is simple. After you meet someone and exchange pleasantries, you only need to ask two questions in order to develop a productive relationship with them.
Question 1: “What’s your biggest work related challenge?” (As an alternative: “What’s keeping you awake at night?”)
Question 2: “Who can I introduce you to that would transform your business/career?”
Those are magic questions. Ask them and a great conversation will follow.
Why do these work so well?
They shift the conversation to the other person. People love to talk about themselves.
The person you are speaking with will immediately like you because you asked about him.
A person thinking about the second question will drop his/her guard. He will immediately go into a stream of conscious dialogue about his needs.
You have a clear opportunity to demonstrate value to this person.
This fourth point is critical.
If you can help this person either: 1) solve the problem that is keeping him awake or 2) introduce him to someone that can transform his business, you will have an ally and/or client for life.
But that’s not always possible. More likely, you will have made a memorable impression on this person (because you discussed his business and things that were important to him) and he will refer you some business when he can.
Here’s the important part of this networking process:
If you ask these questions often enough, you will eventually be able to match people up almost at will.
This means when person “A” says he wants to meet person “B” you may know person “J” who is in the same industry and holds the same title but with a different company. So even though you didn’t make the introduction to person “B” you were still able to connect people who could do business.
This skill, which I call interpersonal networking, is the business version of matchmaking. It has been one of my strongest business development tools throughout my career.
The attorneys at the table were enthralled. It seemed so simple yet none of them were doing it.
The next morning when I came down to the conference, the entire place was buzzing. It seems they had an online discussion board and this exercise had taken over the discussion. Now everyone was matching people up and more than a few strategic alliances had been formed.
Oh, yeah, a few of them also sent me some referrals as well…imagine that…
Here are three additional articles to help you make more money with sales:
How important is sales to your business? You need to grow or die.
The easiest person to sell is the person with a problem. Here’s how you sell the solution.
The number one is the worst number in sales. Aren’t you wondering why?