If you are really serious about growing your business, then initiating contact with people you don’t know is the primary key to your UnFranchise Business success.
Unfortunately, most people have a level of ill ease when talking to anybody for the first time. This is because they don’t know how their attempt to communicate will be received. It is important to put this in perspective, because, and I repeat, this is the principal way to develop your business. The initial contact is easy but people often let their emotions get in the way, especially if they are too focussed on successful preconceived outcomes.
When you learn to focus on initiating contact with the sole intent of making a positive impression, it can eventually lead to the outcome you want over time. Just not the first meeting. If your focus is more on hooking them immediately they will feel this and your objective becomes harder. All you want is an opportunity to meet again and therefore you want them to have enjoyed the interaction.
REMEMBER: All you want is an opportunity to meet them again.
Early in your journey you eventually have to run out of friends and family to contact. Your business can still grow if your friends and family take up the challenge. But let’s face it, for most of us, even with friends and family, it will not be that easy. Eventually it will be necessary to find new people and that means creating opportunities with people you don’t know.
In this section we address the issues and the possibilities for opening up dialogue with people you don’t know. Creating new contacts. To make this happen it means learning more about yourself and how other people see you because the more comfortable you are with yourself, the easier it becomes to initiate contact with people you don’t know.
We know some people have no problem initiating communication with people and yet we also know some of these people do not have the ability to build ongoing relationships. We also know that some people have problems meeting people for the first time and yet have the ability to create relationships despite obvious apprehension. However, in general, most people are uncomfortable with first time connections for a variety of reasons based on fear and consequently struggle to develop a connection during initial contact.
Good news! It is definitely a skill that can be learned and always improved. Nobody becomes an expect just like that. Improving one’s ability in anything comes with understanding and practice. Let me use golf to explain. In golf we have putting. You hit a ball with the putter and the aim is to get the ball in the hole. You know some people are actually afraid to even try (Maybe because they are afraid to look stupid?) and need a lot of encouraging. I learnt this years ago when introducing people to the keyboard at the time computers started to be used in the workplace. I had to help them overcome the fear before I could train them in the applications. No progress could be made while they were afraid of touching the keyboard. In golf everybody eventually putts the ball in the hole, if they have a go. The more they try the more chances they have of getting the ball in the hole and the more chances of doing it first time. You also have to be able to handle those you miss. You may think you have failed but you haven’t because you learn something every time you hit the ball and miss. You make corrections and consequently achieve more success. The same applies to initiating contact with people.
In fact, you can apply this comparison to anything in life. Driving a car for example. Some people can get in a car and drive it without knowing what they are doing. I should know because I drove a car into a wall at 2 years of age even though even now I have no idea how I did it. However, I am a good driver now and all the original problems when I was a learner have been mastered. This doesn’t mean I will never make mistakes. In life we all make mistakes or fail sometimes. The biggest mistake is failing and not trying again.
You improve your putting or car driving by learning from people who have more experience. The same applies to initiating contact with people for the first time. There are plenty of people who will help you.
I trust my message is getting through and you appreciate the importance of this part of your business? There is not a more important activity for building your business and that is why I push this point. If you don’t work on this then your business will stagnate.
Let me repeat – Learning more about yourself and how other people see you is really important because the more comfortable you are with yourself, the easier it becomes to initiate contact with people you don’t know.
Before you increase your skills at this point it will help if you are clear about understanding your business, finding the right people, know the makeup of the right people for this business, understand cold calling in relation to your business, understand the difference between initial contact and ongoing prospecting, and know your one liner.
Information you need for all of this is on this website and there is plenty more on the internet. You also need to meet with your team and other UnFranchise Owners to get feedback on what you know and understand about your business and how your one liner works on them. You have to practice, practice and practice all of this over and over again.
Your results tell you how well you are doing. Analysing your interactions and discussing them with other UnFranchise Business owners will help you improve and increase your successful results.
As you do this – bit by bit you will experience the difference and see it in the results.
Your INITIAL CONTACT is really quite easy. Never be in a rush. You never want to sell at this time. Do a bit of marketing, if the opportunity arises, but always keep it brief. Your goal is to create a relationship while you learn about them. Observe their manner and communication to see how they match up against the Right Person for your business.
Once you have made a connection, you can move on to developing that connection and converting them into a hot prospect. We’ll deal with developing prospects in other sections. First let’s discuss the Initial Contact. Funnily enough everybody has experienced initial contact many times during their lives. Your goal is to take it one step forward and get an opportunity to meet again when it feels right.
There are many ways to open up communication and it is up to you to identify those that suit you.
You meet people in all kinds of places and you can learn a lot in the first three minutes using simple questions and observing them with your eyes and ears such as:
- Where do you work
- Do you enjoy what you do?
- What interests them
- If they are a potential for your business
- If you relate to them
- If it is worthwhile meeting again
- And more ……
You can find more information and some example ideas for your initial contact in the section – Ice Breaker.