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5 marketing tips to improve your odds of winning new business when you least expect it.

We signed a new client last week. I could say that it was because of our tremendous service quality, amazing results, or widely recognized brand, but that wouldn’t really be correct. We were in the right place at the right time. Yes, I’ll admit it. We got lucky.

I disagree with the sales guru who first coined the phrase “luck is not a strategy.” While there are probably no marketing plans that list “luck” as a strategic priority, your marketing plan can dramatically increase your opportunities to get lucky – meaning to generate leads and win business when you didn’t expect to do so.

Here are 5 ideas to help improve your odds of getting lucky:

  1. Think like your prospective clients. While you may have a lot of things to say, your prospects may not necessarily be interested in them – or at least not interested at that moment. They tend to look for help solving current and specific business challenges, and with so many pressing issues their attention span is very limited. Get to the point, educate by providing specific, just-in-time learning, and stop. What are you more likely to read, a dissertation or a page?
  2. Keep your name and message in front of prospects. It’s pretty rare (lucky) for a prospective client to read a blog post and immediately sign up. Given the overwhelming amount of information available, the odds of prospective clients thinking about you even when they are ready to buy can be pretty low. Increase those odds by continually communicating and educating. Choose whatever time frame and tactic works best for you, but focus on more active ideas like email messages, trade articles, newsletters, seminars, etc.
  3. Go where your clients go. Think about where your prospects get information today. What do they read? Where do they network? What associations do they belong to? What peer group helps them solve their business problems? That’s where you want to place your messages, and yourself for that matter, to educate and build your advocate network.
  4. Understand the value of your indirect network. Communicate early and often, and to anyone interested in receiving your messages. While Uncle George may not be interested in becoming a client, he may have just heard from a peer asking about ways to solve the challenge you just discussed. Uncle George looks good when he forwards the message, and someone you don’t know just heard about you at the perfect moment. Lucky you.
  5. Don’t sell, until some asks you to. None of the ideas above will work if you use your soap box to pitch your services. You can’t sell until you understand the client’s unique pain, but you can always educate. So the guy that just posted a LinkedIn message advertising his SEO services isn’t educating and isn’t solving any specific business problem. He’s just wasting everyone’s time. Ditch the pitch.

If you’ve recently heard someone complaining that he or she keep missing business opportunities, and it seems like a competitor is everywhere all the time, forward this article and help that person solve a business problem. Then try the concept for your own firm. Good luck!

If you can’t measure it, don’t do it.SM

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