Everyone in the world is either on your team, a competitor, a customer, or a referral prospect. In other words, no one is irrelevant in today’s global economy. However, a more targeted and often local market is where most of your dollars should be invested, despite your desire to be globally appealing.
When you don’t have critical face-time with your clients and prospects, keep the e-mails and phone calls flowing. Also, return calls promptly and politely to those who could possibly help you make money in one way or the other.
General business and community contacts produce goodwill and quality business leads over time, even if not short-term cash. When you initially do business with someone, they will appreciate your professionalism and be happy to work with you under a future and favorable relationship, or refer you to other prospects. Being accessible, reliable, and proactive will pay off. Goodwill throughout your social and business communities will work to your advantage.
You can always politely refuse any deal that may not appear beneficial while maintaining your profit margins and your dignity. Conversely, not effectively responding to businesspeople and offers could lead to missed opportunities and damage your reputation.
Nowadays, there is no excuse for poor communication. We have speed-of-light e-mail, voicemail, cell phones, Palm Pilots, laptops, and Blackberries—all in a single device if you want. You can literally contact almost anyone who isn’t hiding, almost anywhere, at almost any time. Your only excuse would be a lack of motivation.
Many of your prospects and contacts may not be adequately responsive, but this reality should only increase your volume of attempted communications rather than decrease them. As a result, you will receive more data on what is effective, which you can continue to reinforce, as always, against the interests of your competitors.
If you are continuously receiving poor results, even with a quality feedback loop from your tests, then you need even more communications and contacts in order to make enough money to survive and set yourself up for future advancement.
Again, nobody is offering a quick path to wealth. But even if an easy path doesn’t exist, a rational and difficult route will still work.