If you were asked what a social network was, you’d immediately think of Facebook or Twitter. You’d know that a social network was a way of reaching out to friends. You build your list of friends over time. Networking works the same for businesses. Over time, you develop new contacts and customers. As the list grows, so does your business.
Your list is a lifeline in many ways. It’s a way to reach out to new potential customers as well as stay in touch with the customers you have now and making sure they continue to be your customers. Just having a list of names and contact information isn’t what creating a list is about. It’s about growing a list of potential customers. This requires a bit of creativity and work on your part. You not only have to reach out to people, but you have to reach out to the RIGHT people.
Let’s say you own a business selling fishing equipment. You could probably market your fabulous fishing equipment all you wanted to a “girly girl” type female whose reply to the question, “Do you want to go fishing” would be, “Eeeeewwwwww!!” Now if you owned a nail salon, you might be able to hook that female. It works the same way in reverse. You could market your nail salon business and/or products all day to the rugged fisherman whose idea of vacation is spending time on a boat with a fishing pole in his hands and your effort would be wasted.
Building a list of people you could never convert into customers wouldn’t do you a bit of good. You probably know what a target market is, and you know who your target market is. You’ve studied them, and you know what they’re looking for. You know the type of people you could convert to customers if they had the chance to get to know what your business is all about and see what you have to offer them. That’s the type of people you’re looking for. That’s the kind of network you need to build to be sure your business is successful.
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