You don't have to be a baseball fan to know that RBI stands for Runs Batted In. The team that scores the most runs wins the game. If you want to win in business, review these five baseball analogies. Be active, productive and profitable when marketing your services and promoting your products.
Get on Base with Networking
1) Why go to a networking event where you don’t know anyone and make small talk with some random attendees? Instead, visit the website of the host organization a week in advance of the program; contact the officers and introduce yourself, by email or via LinkedIn. Say that you’re excited to attend the upcoming event and are considering becoming a member. The officers will respond to you warmly, because they want to recruit you to join the association. This pre-event marketing will build a welcoming committee. Accordingly, you’ll walk into a room where the movers and shakers of the group are eager to meet you, instead of you feeling like an outsider.
Try a different approach to networking with Networking Squared. Arrange for two of your contacts, whose interests or professions are aligned, to have a coffee date with you. They’ll become acquainted and you’ll get the lowdown on what’s new in their worlds. It’s a win-win for all three of you.
Here’s the Pitch for Speaking
2) Polish your elevator pitch. Give a webinar. Speak at a networking group, a college class or a local business incubator.
Introduce yourself to podcast hosts whose audiences are your target market. Suggest appearing with a client; you narrate the success you achieved together and the client provides a testimonial. You have stories galore to share; people want to hear them and learn from your experiences.
Keep the Box Score refers to Writing
3) You have a newsletter, right? Publish it at least quarterly, if monthly is too often for you as a solopreneur. Write articles for your industry association or professional membership organization. You can publish articles on LinkedIn and guest blog for others (Thanks, Danielle). Make sure your online writing links back to your website, so readers can learn more about you and your services or products.
Compose a case study of a project; invite a client to be the co-author and submit the article to their industry magazine. Having the client’s name as co-author will curry favor with the editor and enhance your credibility as an observer of their field. You’ll make the client look brilliant to their peers and competitors for getting an article published and you’ll attract prospective clients from others in that market.
Root for the Home Team and Be active in the trade association of your target market
4) You’ll hear first-hand what drives those business leaders and what keeps them up at night.
See where the industry is succeeding and where it could use your expertise. You’ll probably be the only person with your professional skills and background in the group, so it’s easy to find ways to contribute your knowledge on a committee or in their operations. For example, I edit the Member Column of an organization’s monthly newsletter. I solicit articles from other members, edit and polish them. Occasionally, I contribute my own work.
Cover All the Bases when you Extend your presence online
5) Whenever you perform one of these activities, mention it on your social media accounts. For example:
Networking: Post on LinkedIn that you’ll attend the upcoming program hosted by the @Association for Leadership, where you’ll meet @Mary London, President and @Sara Money, Treasurer. Putting the @ symbol before the names of the group and the officers will turn them bold on the LinkedIn platform, plus send a notification to those connected to the Association and to the two leaders you named.
Speaking: When you announce that you’ll be speaking at an event or on a podcast, name three topics you’ll discuss. People will think: “Janet Falk is speaking on Topic 2. I better sign up.” Or, “I don’t know Janet Falk, but I’m interested in Topic 3. I’ll take a look at her website.” Perhaps, “Too bad I can’t attend Janet Falk’s presentation, I should invite her to speak to my group about Topic 1.”
Writing: Turn your presentation or podcast remarks into an article for the association’s newsletter, an industry magazine, your own newsletter or other publication. Then promote the article and your ideas on social media.
Every month, or every week, review each category to see where you participated. I conduct a check on Thursday evenings; that way, I can still squeeze in another activity on Friday and end the week with a winning score.
Don't strike out
Do you have to take on all of these activities? Perhaps you have a greater affinity for speaking and less interest in writing. Give each one a try and then focus on the ones where you feel most comfortable and are seeing the biggest hits.
After all, slugger Babe Ruth said, “Every strike brings me closer to my next home run.”
It’s time for you to step up to the plate, swing for the fences and hit it out of the park. You can get more ideas in my 50+-page ebook, Create and Monitor Your Marketing RBI, available for $9.99 via Venmo.
Janet L. Falk, Ph.D.
Janet Falk is a Communications professional with more than 30 years’ experience in-house, as a consultant and at public relations agencies. As Chief Strategist of Falk Communications and Research, she manages proactive media outreach and has secured placement of executives and events in local, national and international print and broadcast media.
Attorneys, CPAs, business executives and consultants rely on her insight, strategy and analysis. Janet is a versatile writer who can prepare newsletters, speeches, articles, LinkedIn profiles, presentations and website copy, as well as marketing literature. She has a broad network of contacts among graphic designers, web developers, photographers and printers to meet related client needs.
Speak with her for a complimentary Strategic Communication Session to assess your Communications activity and online presence. She guarantees TWO IDEAS. And check out her recent webinar on Using the Media to Increase Awareness and Find Customers.