Who are my clients?

I know it’s been a few weeks since I’ve written. Sorry about that, it’s been so busy…

I had a strange experience tonight. I belong to a large networking group and tonight was an event I’d been looking forward to – I had a table for presenting my business to about 60 other businesspeople.

I spent a LOT of time preparing for this. I had a nice presentation of portfolio shots mixed with relevant testimonials. I had fresh color copies of my newsletter, printouts of my ‘design process in a nutshell’ handout, business cards, cool Parallax pens, and special discount coupons I’d designed, one for SEO and another just for a general site review. I spent a lot of time, and I came up with a good-looking, coordinated set of materials that reflected the effort I put into graphic design.

I must say I was quite disappointed that no one seemed interested.

No one looked at my presentation that was rolling on my laptop for the entire time. Only one person took a handout; no one left a business card to get my free newsletter (or even picked up a newsletter, once they glanced at it). No one wanted to talk about web design or took any coupons, or business cards for that matter.

I was surprised, and embarrassed to some degree. I felt like I’d wasted a lot of my time for nothing.

But after I got home and talked about it with my husband, I realized that maybe this was a lesson. My business coach has told me on numerous occasions that being in business is not just about finding clients, it’s about finding out who your clients are not.

I’ve gotten the vague feeling (and sometimes not so vague), over the past few months that I’ve belonged to this group, that maybe the clientele is not my kind of clientele. I won’t elaborate on that much, just to say that I should try to listen to my intuition a bit more carefully when it comes to my business. I’m going to give this some serious thought over the next week or two and try to determine whether it’s good or bad for me to get out of this group and seek out another that might be closer to the kind of clients I’ve gotten so far.

I think this was a good experience and it will lead me to something more, whether here or with another group. I realized tonight (actually I knew this already) that I really don’t care for networking. I’m fine one-on-one or in a small group, but I don’t really feel comfortable schmoozing people I don’t at all know. It’s not for me. I need other venues, maybe smaller ones, to effectively communicate what my business is all about. More personal venues.

1 comment

  1. I find the best way to build the business is to ask your satisfied client to refer their friends and peers to you. Thus, I do one medical site and before the year ends, I have fourteen medical clients. I do one realestate site and then there are five more. I do one radio station and now there are four. I set up streaming for a client and now fifteen of my clients use audio streaming. Word of mouth is by far the greatest means of growing any business.

    After that I simply let my web sites and client sites bring me the new business while I am busy taking care of all the others.

    It has kept me busy for 10 years with new business always on the books. I too feel like a kid out of place when everyone is schmoozing each other. That is not my business model nor my personality. Thus, I tend to my business, care for my clients on a first name basis and they in turn send me business.

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