We cannot expect a harvest in the Fall if we fail to plant seeds in the Spring.
As with all relationships, business relationships develop better in a slow cooker. Speed dating is superficial at best.
Wise networkers recognize that working a room is not a matter of speed but rather, quality connections. A networking meeting simply provides the opportunity to meet several like-minded people in one place, at one time. The work in networking happens when the meeting ends. Relationships are built with strong and consistent follow-up.
Seeding a business relationship can take many different forms. The focus must be on giving rather than receiving. Adding value to a relationship develops from serving needs. If I expect a relationship to grow, my focus must be on being the first to the table to add significant value.
It seems to me that social media has an Achilles heel when it comes to fostering value based relationships.
Can you build a relationship in 145 characters? I can’t help but notice (and Unfollow) those in the Twitterverse who seem to believe that quantity is better than quality. I prefer Twitter peeps who don’t have much to say…but when they do say something, a powerful deposit is made in the relationship.
I don’t believe that social media can be effectively used as a primary vehicle to deliver relationship-building messages. I believe social media should be used to invite prospects into a relationship. The best Tweets link us through a tiny URL.
Forward me to a position paper and educate me about your product. A link to your website can work if the website is more than an electronic brochure. Invite me to share needs through a listening post.
I have heard more than one business owner whine that social media doesn’t work for them. The medium works. Your copy didn’t. Words matter more than the vehicle.
Overall, status updates and most tweets seem to be very self-serving. Perhaps that’s why I don’t feel I miss much if I miss a few days reading ANY social medium.
If your marketing plan includes the use of social media (it should) work hard to write value-packed statements that encourage a deeper connection.
Seed broadcasters seem indiscriminate. Don’t write to the masses.
Seed the need.
How do you build business relationships?
–Photo by Rebecca Gunn