Well? Do you? Do you have one to one meetings?
Coffee is your friend
As important as I believe Social Media is, and as important as it is to my customers, it is still one part of your marketing mix... So, social media is not the panacea, you still have to keep up other marketing activities - put another way, don't expect your LinkedIn connections to tweet you a purchase order.
So, no surprise that I am a HUGE advocate of meeting people one to one. I can honestly say I have never had a one to one that was a waste of time. I've had not so good ones, where the other person pitched me from 'hello' - I still learn't an awful lot - 1st time it happened I learn't how desperate the pitcher comes across for doing this and made a 'note to self' to never pitch. Second time, I started honing my skills, leading by example, gently swerving the other party away from pitching me towards a much more rewarding conversation about 'them' and their wants needs and desires.
Strategic Tip - I haven't met anyone that doesn't like talking about themselves or their business.
Practical Tip - If you are being pitched, ask them why they started the business, its on topic and they won't spot the 'swerve', listen to the answer. Then continue asking what goals they have, listen to the answer. Then how is it going, what challenges they have and how are they going to achieve these goals... keep listening - because by now that "Carlos FanDango - Time limited, Just For You Mick, Bank Holiday Special Offer --- Not Everyone Is Getting", will have been long forgotten and replaced with a conversation from which you will learn so much more, start a meaningful dialogue / relationship and very likely reveal any opportunities.
The main reason my one to one's are so rewarding is the due diligence both parties can do before committing to meet. Thanks to marketing and social media, the information is out there, I can learn much about the other person before deciding to invest in a meeting. Before suggesting a meeting I can be confident they will agree (warm calling) - because I will understand what the benefits will be for both of us. Often I state openly up front the reasons why I would like to meet - set the agenda, quote the benefits. In case your wondering .. I do ok, 'most' people are happy to accept the invite and meet.
All that said, meeting new people is rarely a waste of time, taking a chance can be rewarding too - amazing even... Take yesterday, the inspiration for this blog. A friend of mine, on vacation in Turkey, had the briefest of conversations with a lady from the Netherlands ... I do mean brief, on a speed boat towing his kids around a bay on a para chute - as you do. This ladies work with young people and sports psychology really resonated with my friend and loose commitments were made to follow up when they returned from holiday.
They did follow up, the Dutch lady was planning a trip to London with a colleague of hers, and a couple of weeks later I find myself in that there London having a coffee under the Gherkin, people watching waiting for our new Dutch acquaintances to arrive. Why was I there? My brief was just to listen, learn, understand and maybe look for opportunities. What the hey, its just a one to one, he's a good friend well justified to ask for of a few hours of my time, and he asked so nicely :D He also spent half the journey into London preparing excuses in case it was a waste of my time, bless. He need not have worried, I had researched this ladies work and I knew it was in the least going to be 'interesting'.
They arrived on time, we talked. It was relaxed, casual yet intense, we talked for 3 hours. The work these people are doing is astounding. Their training and teaching techniques were fabulous and the results they get equally impressive. Two and half hours in, I had quietly dropped out of the conversations - not because I was bored, disbelieving, cynical etc, I was away, long gone ... thinking FAST and HARD through what I had seen and heard.
I so wish you all could have been in that cafe witnessing the return on my investment in this one to one, I rapidly went from doing a sanity check on an idea, a 'favour' for an apologetic friend, to diving in head first to a new way to learn, to teach, to train.
My ROI was many fold.
1. I know 24-7's approach to teaching Social Media works, I have struggled with expressing why it works so very well. A MAJOR benefit of 24-7 membership and I still struggle to express the 'How'!
Until now I would refer to Herman Ebbinghaus's work, but now! Now, I have a new model to both express 24-7's philosophy AND encourage our members to achieve, to DO, "one powerpoint slide one sentence" - DONE. It fits on a business card! And hopefully, if my new friends are willing, a new model to help develop into new markets.
2. I learn't, lots, I am going to learn more about their work, and ways we can use it to improve 24-7's training methods.
3. The meeting went so well, I am convinced there are benefits, and even opportunities, for my friend for his own idea's, and I have told him so. He is also well placed with helping them with their aspirations.... Maybe 24-7 can help them too.
4. My one to one model survived another meeting - Opportunities, Shared Knowledge and Benefits everywhere - no one pitched anything, ever.
5. My connections grew by two. Highly capable and competent, driven, interesting world class people.
So, do you do one to one's? If not, tell me in the comments below, why not? Because, lorks-a-lordy are you missing out, on so many levels. Here's an offer, LOL - its not a pitch!! Lets have a one to one and we can talk more on why I think this way... If you decide it wasn't an hour well spent - I'll buy the coffees. If you are not in the UK! Lets do it online, I am available 24-7 :D
Strategic Tip : JDI.....
Do you have one to one's? Do you have enough one to one's? Can you have enough one to one's? Click to Tweet
Lets connect -
I am on LinkedIn here - https://uk.linkedin.com/in/mickholloway
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I am on Twitter here - @mick_holloway