By John Pummell. Glow New Business
It’s tough out there – but don’t batten down the hatches?
As we face the stark reality of a recession and as confidence within many companies is low, it may seem the obvious choice to simply batten down the hatches and try to ride out the storm of recession.
But wise companies make an effort and invest in their new-business drive all the time, keeping their foot on the proverbial gas pedal.
As we all know, it's easy when the phone is ringing and every single person in the company is rushed off their feet handling projects, pitches and new business enquiries, to put the future of your company on hold.
Now, as business begins to slow – it is imperative to double your efforts and make sure that you are speaking to as many prospects as possible.
It has to be seen as an investment; whether you appoint an in-house new business team, hire a freelance consultant or bring in an outside agency to help you.
Here are our top 10 tips to get the new business show on the road:-
1. Don’t view this as an exercise in playing the numbers game, ensure you have something relevant and interesting to say, after all there is little point in meeting a prospective client simply for the sake of it.
2. Furthermore, ensure you are targeting the “right” prospects; do your homework - it is about having something salient to offer.
3. Ensure that you pool your resources; not just rely on one” bod” with little or no support.
4. Don't be mean; you are investing in the future of your company… make sure that you budget for new business properly.
5. Empower your new business director. He or she should be a board member with real responsibility for the growth of the company not just a fat pay packet waiting in a smart restaurant to be head hunted into the next job.
6. Use the best talent available for your new-business team, and make sure they understand your business and are well briefed.
7. Don't expect immediate success-it can take time to build a rapport from cold and even when you have met a prospect don't expect it will lead to an immediate brief - be patient and accept that people want to get to know you; it is after all a courtship and rarely happens overnight. Take your time and you will have a relationship that lasts.
8. Develop a multi-channel approach covering all the potential lines of communication from referrals to trade shows; from cold-calling to mailing. Many companies simply adopt a mass telemarketing campaign, this approach rarely ever works and at best generates meetings with time-wasters or prospects that feel that have been bullied into a meeting.
9. Ensure your marketing collateral is relevant and up to date and above all is true to your company-not full of the usual agency flannel - clients really can see through this!
10. Ensure your new business team are given the right new business tools such as “LeadAlert” to keep them ahead of the game.
Don’t give up - success is borne out of professionalism, perseverance and patience, not bully boy tactics!
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