Written By: Adam Dince
One of things I love about my career is that I have the opportunity to talk to small business owners and enterprise business leaders on a regular basis.
Whether it be at a conference, an expo, meet-ups or on social networks, I always end-up chatting with people who are passionate about their businesses. Often times, once folks find out that I’m an earned media guy, they’re quick to ask questions about SEO, social media, content etc. And these questions turn in to relationships and friendships that continue to grow long after initial conversations.
Here’s an example:
Last year, Deluxe sponsored a booth at the New York City Small Business Expo. At the event, I sat at a table and conducted digital footprint audits with small business owners. I didn’t “sell” our products or services, I just helped small businesses put a strategy together for improving their online findability.
One of the audits I conducted was for a real-estate agent who loved the strategy and was excited to get back to the office to share with her colleagues. We kept in touch after the Expo, exchanged a few emails and phone calls and built a friendly rapport. Shortly thereafter, she invited me out to speak to her management team in hopes of working together on a more formal basis.
Last July, I attended a search marketing conference where I struck up conversation with a very successful family business that was trying to learn more about SEO. We ended up talking shop for the entirety of the event and exchanged contact information. After the event was over, we continued conversations which led to a formal business relationship.
In neither of these situations did I have the intention of selling any type of product or service. I just wanted to be a valuable resource that could help somehow. I could share dozens of similar examples. The fact is, people are tired of being sold to. They’re tired of cold-calls and sleazy sales tactics. They’re burnt out on being bothered with intrusive ads and more than ever, prefer to hire a trusted source.
If you’re looking to become a better salesperson, be a helpful resource. Build a brand that people trust. Build a brand that people consider top of mind when they need help for solutions you can provide.
If you do those things, not only will your business be successful, but you’ll also build incredible relationships that will last a lifetime.