The heart and soul of any business is the customer or client, regardless of your product or service. Without customers, your business is nonexistent. Many entrepreneurs can test out a business idea, or start up their first venture, with just ten potential clients.
However, the more leads you have, the better off you are, and building a strong foundation of potential clients is a great way to develop relationships and take a big step towards success. Below, you’ll learn how to get 50 new, local clients leads in one day. Since many businesses market to target audiences in their area when just starting out, these local leads and potential clients can be critical.
A great way to find clients is by flipping through local magazines or newspapers. For example, as a social media manager, I look for advertisements for businesses that have just opened, since I like to help small brands build their following. I pick up my magazines from the local grocery store, coffee shop or book stores I visit.
Whatever your product or service is, you can find great leads by seeing who is advertising in the area and collecting their contact information. You can also find leads in stories, if local businesses or other relevant brands are mentioned, so be sure to read thoroughly. You can easily find 20-30 leads this way.
If you want to find local clients, try checking the geotags for your location on Instagram. Simply open the explore page and select “Places” instead of tags or people, and take some time to scroll through photos posted near you. A lot of them will be personal photos or selfies, but you’ll find local businesses who may need your service or product as well. I find Instagram direct message to be a great way to contact potential leads.
Never turn your nose up at Craigslist. I’ve gotten lengthy contracts from the website, and you can too. Try posting about your product or service, with a nice description and relevant photos, or search for people who need your expertise by using keywords or browsing through the right sections. You’d be surprised at what you’ll find!
List Your Favorites
You probably have an entire backlog of brands you know and love locally. Don’t ignore them! I love to work with quirky and altruistic companies, so I’ll reach out to local crystal shops or organizations promoting causes I care about and ask if they need social media management. Don’t underestimate your own worth or feel like you’re not ready to pitch them. If this is a brand you love, you’re already passionate about them, which provides a leg up. Look up their contact information online or via social media.
You’ve heard it all before, but networking is extremely important. Since we’re focusing on getting leads in the same day, this is networking you can do from home. Try searching for neighborhood organizations or pages and ask to join, or look for other relevant groups in your area, which could include pages for entrepreneurship. While you should read the rules for each group or page first, some of these members might become your next customer if you approach the right way. Looks through the posts and add to the conversation yourself, or reach out via direct message to a group member you think may need your help.
I highly recommend keeping track of all the contact information you gather from the above sources in a cloud or internet-accessible spreadsheet. I generally use Google documents and sheets, but you could also use Numbers on iOS and access the information through iCloud Drive on any Apple device.
I have a friend, a professional musician, who makes a living from a thriving database of over 5,000 venues he regularly contacts to book shows. These venues are his leads, and he keeps detailed information for each. You can do the same, and building a list like his, if only a fraction of the length, will ensure you’ve always got someone to pitch. Start collecting potential client information, and you’ll never be without a customer.
Founder of ForME, a network to inspire and support ambitious young people, Abby Lee Hood is a Nashville-based author and entrepreneur who helps brands realize their potential through soulful social media management and writes YA science fiction. She lives with her geriatric dog. Follow her on social media on Instagram @abbyleetakespictures or on Twitter @AbbyLeeHood.