September 15, 2020
Fall — the start of a new school year, a new football season, and tradeshow season. Everything has kicked into high gear after a summer of beach visits/mountain visits/vacations. As a child, I loved to hear about my grandfather’s trips to the big chocolate conventions with all the candy makers. It was at those venues where he learned who the new players were, what the old players were doing, and who had the best new products.
The shows are not happening, or they are happening in some weird modified form. We get it. Things are not going back to “normal.” Uncertainty abounds. We lived through the stages of grief multiple times. What should we do? Virtual shows don’t quite do what we need them to do. Business travel is filled with angst. We tired of being tired of the pandemic.
For me, it’s time… time to pull up my big girl face mask and get it done. I like a good challenge, and I suppose that many marketers do too. If we can’t make hay at tradeshows and in-person meetings, we have to find new ways of keeping the relationships alive and cooking. We are finding new ways to deliver personal contact. For us, and for many of our clients, the seeds planted earlier in the year are starting to sprout.
Here are a few ways to connect and make that personal contact for continued growth:
- Check in, follow up, say hello. Whether it’s a new contact or a well-established one, keep the relationship warm with regular email communications. This doesn’t mean you should spam them daily, or even weekly for that matter. Figure out a cadence that works for you and the content you want to share.
- People are spending more time on their computers and on social media. We can see the increases in engagement from own reporting. Consider sending a personal message through LinkedIn or utilizing the InMail feature. LinkedIn Sales Navigator is also a beneficial contracted lead generation tool that allows you to search for and save prospects.
- Snail mail still works, especially when it’s sprinkled in among digital tools. Since many people may still be working from home or an alternate location, consider adding an offer in your digital communications to confirm current mailing addresses. Who doesn’t love swag?
- Pick up the phone. Direct connection is almost unusual sometimes because of all of the other avenues available. Setting up a standing call for current partners allows for regular check-ins and status discussions. Adding phone calls to a campaign will also make a huge difference. People aren’t used to hearing a live voice on the other end.
There is a hum of activity now. It may have more of a throwback sound of telephones ringing or mailboxes squeaking open, but we are finding a way to get the work done.