One of the things we have been doing as a result of reading Gail Crosley's book, "At the Crossroads" is to hold a pipeline meeting twice each month at which time we discuss new opportunities that have been presented recently and further to find ways to convert those leads into new engagemenets. At the same time we discuss how the leads are being generated. We noticed, not surprisingly, that despite all the networking activities we participate in over the course of a year, many of our most valuable leads consistently come from the same sources. With that in mind we have been more diligent about tracking our outbound leads, making sure that they are being sent to those referral sources who have been most generous to our firm. At the same time, we discuss how to build a broader referral base, recognizing our key markets.
Much like the old adage, we realize it is who we know that makes a significant difference in uncovering new prospects. When you cultivate relationships with those who are specifically involved in the target market you serve, you have a greater chance to be able to help each other. My best advice to any firm, large or small, is to stay focused on developing trust-based relationships with the centers of influence, business colleagues and community leaders who are most aligned with your audience.
I am not at all suggesting that you don't need a balanced mix of marketing tactics - including social media,print ads, sponsorships, programming and the like, I am, however, suggesting that at the end of the day, it is often key relationships that bring new business to your front door. What have you discovered about the power of relationships? Please feel free to share your experiences..