I wanted to share with you one thing I have diligently put into practice recently and one huge caution in that process. I have become very direct in asking for something of both potential clients and referral partners. This revelation (if you will) has led to an increase in business revenue and has deeply encouraged me.
Have you ever sat with a potential client and thought to yourself “boy I could do so much to help this person” or “this person has such a great personality and I would love to work with them,” yet you did nothing to move that along? Maybe you were unprepared to ask for business? Maybe you felt unworthy of helping them? Or maybe you asked in some roundabout, non-confrontational, unassuming way? Did I peg you with one of those?
It’s really a shame to think of all the (good) business we let slip away as a result of not asking for it. But more specifically, due to not being direct in asking potential clients for business. Let me share with you a simple yet effective way to do this.
When I sit with a potential client, I express my desire (if I honestly have one) to get involved with them and for what reasons I feel that way. This means I have to understand my own business very well and how it provides real value to others. I also have to have a whole lot of integrity behind my statement. If there is any “salesmanship” or “fakeness” behind my word, it will be detected. For me, I believe deeply in what I do and thank God, I have past-client examples to prove I do what I do well.
There are people I really want to work with and I definitely need new clients to build my business, but handling this the wrong way will come off sounding too desperate (and even pathetic). When being direct, we need to consider our motives. Do I say what I say just to build my business or am I truly seeking help others first (in previous positions, I couldn’t always say that)? Am I offering a blanket statement to that potential client or have I thought through my response to their comments (don’t fire off elevator memorized elevator pitches)? Coming across desperate absolutely destroys your credibility with the person you’re speaking with as well as any audience that may overhear you (verbally or through online media).
I have personally seen great response from this new approach. It isn’t full-proof but I will continue to examine my motives and perfect my client deliverables. For me, building a company full of clients that I really want to work and that benefit greatly from my services is my dream. Slowly but surely that is happening for me. How about you? If you’re not there yet, what’s missing?
If you have any questions about this idea please feel free to call or email me. I would love to share with you in more detail!