How To: Get New Clients
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How To: Get New Clients

Clients: Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are

Small business owners often discuss finding new clients and the process of networking. “How do you get new clients?” I’m asked again and again. Over the years, I’ve discovered enjoyable ways to expand my business.

While you can attend a number of networking events in the area, such as a DC Web Women lunch or a Women Grow Business bootcamp, you don’t have to wait for someone else to take the lead. You can organize your own events or meetings.

Here are three ways to create networking opportunities:

Create a Networking Event

If you are organized and enjoy putting together an event, then this option might be for you.

Consider the following: Do you want to create a monthly event? What kind of people do you want to attend?

Considering those questions will help you uncover your goals.

When you place yourself at the center of an event, everyone will remember you. Most likely, they will be grateful to you for spending the time and energy to gather the group together.

Tweetups

If you are an avid Twitter user, or even if you’re just starting out, you may have messaged back and forth with people you’ve never had the chance to meet in person. A Tweetup, an in-person gathering of Twitter users, offers a way to turn virtual connections into real connections.

One inventive Tweetup organizer invited people on a progressive tour of bakeries in the DC area. The attendees met at a central location. Then, at each bakery, the attendees tasted cupcakes, chatted, and walked together to the next location.

Image: Kat Johnston/Sanura Sakai, Creative Commons

Recently, I co-organized a Women Grow Business Tweetup. Several WGB bloggers and small business owners met in real life and developed stronger connections as a result.

With someone I met at the WGB Tweetup, I am creating a workshop focused on creativity and entrepreneurship.

What I love best about networking is the potential, possibilities, and ideas generated when many minds come together.

Meet for Coffee

Over time, networking for business blends with gathering with friends. If you have a project idea or want to reconnect with someone, invite someone for coffee. Coffee works well for those who might not have time for a two-hour lunch.

Th0se are just a few ways you can create networking opportunities that you can then convert into business. What can you add?

More from Women Grow Business on networking and business:

Regular contributor Deborah Ager is principal at ClickWisdom, LLC, which helps organizations attract and keep their ideal customers using paid search, social media, search engine optimization, and email marketing. She’s a Google AdWords Certified Professional and has managed $1.5 million spends in paid search while achieving target opt-in rates. Read a Maryland search engine optimization success story and sign up for free internet marketing tips; you can also connect with her on Twitter and LinkedIn.


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  1. Networking, Tweetups and Coffee meetings are how our business thrives! Your post seemed like you were talking about our company directly. We've organized our own Networking group of people we trust and would be confident in referring business to.

    We also have started the Indy Social Media Happy Hour. This is where people on Twitter around the Indianapolis area get together once a month to meet all of their “online friends” and build stronger relationships.

    Great Post!

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  2. Love this post! Thanks Deborah! Sisarina has been doing #DCTweetup for the last year and it's proved to be a great source of finding new clients. We don't use them to do sales, just to get to know the people around us. Making friends is the best way to get clients – people buy from people they like. Go you!

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  3. Deborah — I have to disagree with you on encouraging others to Create a Networking Event. The truth is, I feel like there are too many networking events out there already. It seems like I could be going to something every night of the week if I wanted to. I'm not sure glutting the “networking” market by starting yet another event is the best suggestion.

    Instead, I'd suggest getting involved with planning for networking events that are already going on in your field. Try your local Chamber if you're a member — or another professional organization — and offer to help plan and run one of their events. If you're working the event or at the check-in table it gives you front-row access to all the attendees.

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  4. It looks good,I have learn a recruit!
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  5. Melanie–Thanks! I love to organize events, and I love how low-key a Tweetup can be. I agree about developing relationships without pushing sales.

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  6. Robin–Thank you for your comment. People are already creating new events all the time. I appreciate your suggestion. I've heard the Chamber can be useful, though I get most of my own clients via referral or in-person networking. The bottom line is to use the tools you enjoy so that building your business is a pleasure.

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  7. Great news! I see the organization of networking events helping businesses get more clients all the time.

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