The easiest source of new business is, of course, current clients. However, setting your existing clients aside, where will you find your next, new client? Below are the two best places to look.
The quest for new clients can feel like a game of hide-and-seek, where you’re the six-year-old and the clients are your eleven-year-old brother who somehow manages to stay hidden despite your best efforts to unearth him. (For the record, Derek, I knew you were behind the living room curtain.)
Where on earth are those precious new clients to be found? The question is all the more pressing when your portfolio of current clients is deflating like a leaky tire. The two most likely places to find your next client are…
Your Audience at an In-Person Speaking Engagement
Presenting to a room of at least 30 decision makers is the sure-fire, fastest way to new clients. Of course, that assumes there are at least 30 decision makers in the room (and if there aren’t, why did you take the gig?).
Literally, every single on-stage presentation I have given has led to new clients, and most consultants I work with have similar results.
Public speaking cements every one of the Six Pillars of Consulting Success:
Know – You’re on stage… Know is assumed.
Like – When your charming personality shines through, you build Like.
Trust – The mere fact that you’re on stage, plus your real-world examples create Trust.
Need – Examples of others’ situations and a quick diagnostic in your presentation create awareness of Need.
Want – Your appealing, passionate portrayal of the outcome fuels Want.
Value – With personal wins in your examples, Value is obvious.
Of course, you need to know how to follow up with your audience and you have to be diligent in your post-meeting activities.
Personal Contact with Your Network (and Introductions)
The most reliable, reasonably quick route to a new client is through personal touch with your contact list. That means phone calls or in-person meetings.
Don’t hide behind email. If you have contacts who are more responsive to email than the phone, send an email asking for a phone call. For everyone else, go directly to phone calls.
Consistent phone time leads to consistent new business. It’s a pretty easy equation.
The biggest challenge some consultants encounter with this approach is the lack of a network to call. If you only know 15 decision makers, you run out of opportunities quickly. Or do you?
Your two goals during a conversation are to build the relationship and to solicit an introduction that allows you to build a new relationship.
When you know how to ask for introductions correctly, you can parlay a tiny list of decision makers into a respectable, 100-to-300 person list in a matter of a couple of months. And with that size contact list, your phone calls will routinely produce new business opportunities.
Have these two sources worked for you?
Where have you found new clients?
Text and images are © 2022 David A. Fields, all rights reserved.