Prospecting Tips:
How to Meet People



These prospecting tips are for people interested in the good old fashioned art of meeting people which is what I consider to be the preeminent quality for business-building. The corollary to this skill is phone prospecting which I cover in detail in cold calling. There are many similarities between phone prospecting and in-person prospecting and so it is worthwhile for you to learn about both of these in order to master the art of meeting people.

Prospecting Tips



I personally believe that it is impossible to build your business to the highest level possible without prospecting. Also, meeting and developing relationships with people in person is the only way to be mega successful. Remember that even if you operate a phone-based business and work with customers remotely that these prospecting tips are still valuable as you should always continue networking in person. That way your people skills will stay sharp and you can open the door to business and referral opportunities that you would not otherwise have... not to mention that meeting people is fun!


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Prospecting Tips: Starting Conversations


• Smile
Many people do not realize that they walk around with something approaching a frown on their face – don't be one of them! As an experiment, put on your natural facial expression and take a look at yourself in the mirror – there is a very good chance that you appear more serious-looking to other people than you realize and so change it with a smile. Even what I call a fake smile is better than none and shows you are trying! You will be amazed at what happens if you just smile at everyone you see


• Say "Hello!"
As crazy as it sounds, the easiest way to start a conversation is simply to say "Hi!". If you are waiting in line or for an elevator or are walking somewhere and your eyes meet someone else's, make sure you smile and say "Hello". Apart from the good feeling of spreading genuine warmth you will find that your confidence will increase and you will feel yourself emerge from the protective shell that many people live their lives inside of. Greeting people is one of the best prospecting tips someone can give you

Prospecting Tips


• Break the Ice
A great way to start a meaningful conversation is to comment on something or ask a question based on the situation and the person you are trying to approach. Even something like, "nice weather, eh?" goes a long way when compared to saying nothing! You will get better and better at ice-breakers and will move from "that's a nice tie!" and "waiting for your wife?" to genuinely funny and interesting comments that make people laugh and engage them


• Go with the Flow
One of two things will happen when you smile and say "Hi" to someone: they will either respond or they will not. If they do, then allow the conversation to take its natural course. You will get better at applying these prospecting tips and if you are worried about getting stuck with awkward pauses then you can always revert to sports, the weather or any kind of general comment about where you are or your current situation. You may "hit it off" or you may not so just relax and have fun


• Listen, Respond, Ask
People love talking – and that includes us too! - and once you get someone warmed up, you will find that they are more than happy to share their thoughts and chat about themselves. You will find clues in what they are saying that will allow you to ask questions to keep developing the conversation. As well, don't turn it into an interrogation and make sure that you talk about yourself as well


Prospecting Tips: Talking Business



Prospecting Tips


• Elevator Pitch
As you meet people it is always a good idea to talk about your business when the opportunity presents itself. This will keep instilling that thought in your mind and keep your thinking focused on your business success. As well, practicing your "sales pitch" on casual acquaintances gives you the practice you need for speaking with customers. Make sure you have a meaningful 30-second pitch that summarizes what you do and how you help your clients


• Informal then Formal
The wrong way to approach people is to start talking about business right away. Let's say you meet someone who you think might be interested in becoming a customer of yours – walking up to them and just asking them does not work for most people. Rather, say "Hi" and just try and start a conversation. In the best case scenario you will make a friend first and if they do not warm up to you just hand them a business card and politely say "Bye!"


• Seek an Approach
Just as you use ice-breakers to start conversations, you can also find points in your conversation that allow you to bring up your business in a matter-of-fact and natural way. You can even turn the conversation in that direction – for example, asking people what they do for work will most often lead them to asking you what you do. Find ways to lead into your business by saying something like, "It's interesting you say that because I am in the business of..."


• Find Commonalities
Are you interested in some of the same things as the person you are speaking with? How can you check to see if you are both on the same wavelength? Are they talk to you passionately? Maybe your kids go to the same school! Learn to build personal and professional bridges between yourself and the people you meet in order to make a lasting impression and build a relationship. Every little thing that you share in common will help bring you together

Prospecting Tips


• The Exchange
So you meet someone very interesting in the mall who is interested in your business and may be able to refer you some business. At some point you are going to exchange information but also make sure to say, "I will call you" or "let's get together for coffee sometime!" or even set a specific future date. Compliment them and let them know you enjoyed speaking with them. Tell them they should expect to hear from you and to call you as well


Prospecting Tips: General Advice





• Dress for Success
Just as many people do not realize that they appear not-so-happy to others, many people do not give as much importance to their appearance as they should. Try going out dressed casually in slacks one day and in a business suit the next – you will not only feel more confident when you are dressed up, but people will respond to you differently. Make sure your immaculate attire is coupled with grooming and personal hygiene


• Following Up
When you call someone you have met, remind them what you chatted about and ask how they are doing before asking if they are still interested in meeting or whatever follow-up you discussed when you met. As well, as your network grows and you know more and more people, it will pays dividends for you to follow-up with people if you come across something they might find useful or interested. It also helps when meeting new people: "Oh, I know someone who does that..."


• Be Assertive
Just like a fake smile is a good substitute for the real thing, so you will need to practice your business demeanor as you grow professionally. Make positive statements like, "I help customers with..." and "business is fantastic!" When you are starting out some assertions may be a bit of a leap but you will grow your belief. People will respond to your statements and though they may sound flat to you, you will notice that people take them very well

Prospecting Tips


• Be Nice
Google's famous motto Don't be evil sums up this point! Don't try and get without giving. Seek first to understand before being understood. Be polite, listen, be sincere, be helpful, be well-meaning and do all those things your parents taught you in dealing with others. As childish as it may sound, this advice will lead you to greater success and prosperity whereas being trite, impatient and rude will make you unhappy and alienate others. This is another gem among prospecting tips that can transform your life!


• Go Places
Staying at home or in your office or just talking to the same customers will cause you to stagnate and hamper your growth. Make a few calls, talk to a few people and go out and see new faces. There is a Pakistani saying to the effect that "motion creates blessings" - get out there and do something new in order to achieve something new. Just sticking with the same old routine is only going to perpetuate the same old results


Get help with prospecting tips for your business!


GO TO:
Free Sales LeadsBusiness Sales LeadsSales Lead GenerationQualifying Sales LeadsSales Lead SheetSales Lead ManagementCold Calling TipsCold Calling Scripts TemplateCold Calling TechniquesAn Effective Cold Calling RoutineSales Process ManagementProspecting Tips Consultant




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