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One of the most difficult parts of business and sales is finding new leads, but by modifying your daily habits, you will find that securing leads is much easier than it seems. Most of the time, business owners encounter possible new clients throughout the day; it’s just a matter of reaching them on a professional level. Even business owners in a niche market have opportunities they never use.
Start with the basics. Use your existing customers to get your leads for you. Always ask for referrals and be ready with a business card. Offer your customers a reward for bringing new clients your way, or offer to send them business when you can. Give away items for them to display at their business, like pens or calendars. Join groups your customers belong to; you are likely to find many new leads at these group gatherings.
Use your website to capture new leads by persuading potential clients to sign up to your email list. Give an incentive like an eBook, newsletter, or a tips and information sheet. Learn blogging and keyword techniques, and start a blog, post to forums, or post informative articles with clickable links to your website. Once you establish yourself as a specialist within your industry, people will clamor to learn what you know and will sign up for your emails.
Although advertising can be expensive, it is a necessity to get your name out into the world. Consider alternate ways to get your name out there and bring in those leads, like a press release about your business; a new service you offer, an upgrade to your office, or even new employees are a good excuse to get your name in the paper. As long as it doesn’t look like an advertisement, the paper should print it.
Your local library houses a wealth of information when it comes to gathering leads. You will find public records of new businesses and new homeowners, just to name a couple. The library will also have market specific research materials that will help in your quest for leads, and you can ask the Reference Librarian for assistance.
Use the time you spend in your car to your advantage. Be on the lookout for new businesses around town and take notes. One good way to find new leads is to look for vehicles with company logos. You can find many businesses you might otherwise miss by doing this. If you are driving and can’t write, use the camera on your cell phone to photograph a logo and phone number, or a new business’s sign. When you are watching, you can find leads anywhere.
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