I love it when the real world gives me a great analogy. Something happens that I can use to explain a concept in way that’s easy to understand and remember. I have a great example of something happening this week to share with you… but first, let me set things up a bit.
You probably know that an important part of successful growth is showing up. Being seen. And telling your stories.
The challenge is always time. We’ve all had thoughts like, “I’m too tired to go to that networking event tonight” or “I don’t have time to write a blog post this week.” It’s because most people overload their calendars, and I’ll be the first to put my hand up and say that’s been a problem of mine, but I keep working on it.
It’s okay to pick and choose how you show up so that you can keep some balance in your life, but be sure to make it a priority to show up every week… at least twice. When you show up, people you know see you and think about the relationship they have with you. Sometimes, those thoughts spark the, “I’ve been meaning to talk to you!” conversation. You also get to meet new people and expand your network of relationships.
If your brain is wanting specifics when I say showing up, I’m talking about social media, networking events, coffees, lunches, peer advisory group meetings, catching a Royals game with a client, speaking at events, exhibiting at trade shows, or rallying your team to volunteer for a local not-for-profit.
These kinds of interactions are how the majority of businesses in Kansas City sell their products and services. We can say that with confidence because we’ve asked the question at every one of our clients and it’s ALWAYS the same answer. The majority of new business comes from existing customers buying more, or existing customers referring someone new to you. And because that’s how it works, showing up dramatically improves your chances to get more business.
Now for that example I was talking about…
The real world analogy is how painting companies get new business. They put a sign in your front yard with their phone number on it. The sign sits in your front yard for days as the painting crew cleans your house, preps your house and then paints your house.
Dozens of people in your neighborhood drive by and see that you are getting your house painted. It makes them think, “oh yeah, we’ve been needing to do that.” And what’s even more interesting is that your neighbor assumes the painting company is trustworthy because you’re using them… and you wouldn’t hire someone that’s awful, right?
We had our house painted recently. Town & Country Painting put their sign in our yard. They started doing the work. And two days later, I saw another Town & Country sign in a neighbor’s yard two houses down the street. I talked to Hart, the owner of Town & Country, and he told me that’s all the advertising they have to do. Yard signs and business cards. And they’re booking new customers in May of 2016, so it’s working.
And no matter what your business is, the same simple truth applies. If you show up, tell your stories, build new relationships and do good work, you will succeed. But it only happens if they know about you, so make sure you’re showing up!