Put your clients at the heart of your network

by Richard White on May 14, 2014 · 0 comments

Clients iconPeople who spend a lot of time networking for sales leads often overlook an important part of their network; their clients.

Your clients should be right at the heart of our networking activity, because an introduction from a happy client to one of their contacts will go a long way to helping us win more business.

 

Clients can help us win more business in a number of ways, including:

  • Calling you when they have a problem they want to talk through.
  • Helping influence other people involved in the decision about a larger deal.
  • Giving important information and insight about competitors in a larger deal.
  • Telling us when an opportunity arises in another part of the organisation.
  • Making introductions to their colleagues within the same organisation or other companies in the same group.
  • When changing jobs and going to a new company, they take us with them.
  • Recommending our services to contacts in other companies.

A client will be more inclined to want to help you if you help them over and above the commercial transaction. It need not cost money either; often your time and insights are just as important, especially when you are dealing with senior people. They do not often get someone they trust to act as a sounding board, and the role of trusted adviser is not just about delivering services, it’s also about being there for them when they want to talk something through. In services, sales are made from problems, and so having a client talk through their problems with you will potentially turn into a sales opportunity!

The best practice for networking with your clients is no different from building a large network of introducers. Remember that people do business with people they know, like, and trust. They also help them too. So if your clients are not helping you win more business then perhaps it is time to start putting them at the heart of your network.

Richard White
Richard White is a sales coach and trainer. He specialises in helping IT consultants win more sales through effective networking. Richard is the author of ‘The Accidental Salesman Networking Survival Guide’ and is a highly sought after speaker on the subjects of networking and soft selling.

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