Capitalize on Your Circle of Influence!

Let’s explore one of the easiest and often most neglected “method”
– reaching out to the people you know, or your Circle of
Influence … According to some cool experts,
we all know at least 100 people: family members, coworkers,
ex coworkers, friends, friends of friends, ex friends, ex husbands,
ex wives, neighbors, etc., etc, etc….
And not only that you can reach out to them and inform them
of your new  “venture,” but you can also ask them – or even give
them an incentive – to reach out to their circle of influence
– to the people THEY know(plain english: ask for referral 🙂 ).
I used to send out and hand out postcards that’d inform the
person about my new career and offered $250 for anyone they
referred to me and stayed my client for more than 90-days.
I picked 90-days because I used to give 90-days money back
guarantee to all my clients. (you can get some postcards free at
http://www.VistaPrint.com and/or 100 postcards for about
$10 – can’t beat that).
So  here’s your assignment – and don’t you slack off,
I’m watching you
😯  – just do it and enjoy the results:
Make a list of 100 people (or more) who you know pretty
well. Don’t think too much about “Can they afford me?” or
“They’d never hire me”… Just put the word out and you might
be in for a surprise (or not… but you know what happens if you
don’t try? NOTHING!). Besides, you could be
right, maybe they can’t afford you or they’d never hire you,
but they know someone who might.
When I sent out my introduction letters (back in 2003 I
followed my mentor’s instructions and sent out actual letters)
I was surprised that I got hired by one of my daughter’s friend’s
parent – someone who I always saw as very confident and
outspoken. If you asked me to cross out the people from my
list who I was sure would never hire me, she would have
been one of them (but she was very well connected and talkative, so
I was hoping that she’ll know somoene who might need me).
It turned out that she was a control freak and felt overwhelmed
all the time. Boy (or Girl), was I glad that I put her on my list…!
 

A few things that I must mention about potentially getting results
with this method:

1. Coaching relatives and close friends can be somewhat “dangerous”
– that is, it can spoil the relationship for years to come, so
be careful – coaching by nature is such that people will open
up and share thoughts/challenges/desires/etc. that they’d never
share with others and at times this “sharing” can create some
discomfort later… Also, some family members or friends might not take the
process seriously and make you feel like a failure… either
scenario is not very good, so be careful. I know coaches who
refuse to coach friends and family. I tried, it worked with
some and failed with others. I’ll never try again ; though, it
depends what type of coaching do they need. One of my friends
lost her son (died in a car accident – 15-years-old) – I provided
her with bereavement coaching for more than a year (yes, free),
and as a result she recommended me to others who lost someone;
though I definitely did not want to make a career out of it
– bereavement coaching is not for everyone.
2. You don’t have to write up all the 100 names in one sitting.
Some can do it in one sitting and even enjoy it; for me it was a drag.
So I wrote the names in Excell and used the “arranging them in
ABC order function” (whatever you call that AZ function) and I’d
highlight the people to whom I sent out the letters; then every
day I’d add 10 to 20 more names…
3. Commit to send out 10 postcards per day (or letters
– I prefer postcards with some crazy, funny, or beautiful graphics).
 
4. If you don’t have strong copy-writing skills, start writing
out the names, but don’t send out anything till we speak
about how to write client-attracting copy.
 
5. Please do not allow self-doubt, procrastination, analysis-paralysis,
or other “buggs” stop you from completing your “homework”!

Enjoy, and let me know if you found these tips useful.

 

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