As a marketing tool, networking is a great outlet for making ‘ideal’ connections for small businesses. What’s an ideal connection? Perhaps an analogy will help elucidate the term. You’ve probably heard the following saying:
Give a man a fish and you’ve fed him for a day.
Teach a man how to fish and you’ve fed him for a lifetime.
For that man, his ideal connection would be a fishing instructor. Similarly, you could consider a fruit tree. Would you prefer to have a mango, or a mango tree? For your business, as the analogy goes, there will be clients (fish, or fruit…), and there will be those who love you and your business and will feed you with clients for years (these are the fishing instructors or fruit trees…).
Connecting with these people is obviously going to benefit your bottom line tremendously. But where do you even start? How do you identify these ideal connections for your business? How do you then connect with them? And perhaps most importantly, how do you foster and nurture these relationships over time?