Helping people through your marketing can be fun and exciting.
People you want to work with have problems and you have the answers. What could possibly be more natural than building a relationship that will benefit you both? Just keep in mind as you set out to prove your merits that there is such a thing as too much helpfulness.
If your mindset is on helping and not just to boost sales, you’re more likely to avoid this faux pas. There is a place for aggressive helpfulness, but too much aggression is a major put off for many people.
Consider the people you admire and find helpful. Are they force feeding you their expertise? How aggressive were they with their offers to help and what does that look like? Do you hear from them constantly or periodically? Do their offers come across in a desperate tone? Consider how frequently you offer to help people, the posture you have when you make the offer and the language you use.
The hard part is, there’s no formula. Connecting once a month is way too much for some relationships, but nowhere near enough for others. How do you know which is which?
In general, your timing should depend on:
- The larger the discrepancy between your influence and theirs, the longer you should go between follow-ups.
- If you’ve found people who could become clients but don’t have an immediate need, staying in touch once a month is plenty.
Of course, both of these play off each other. A potential client without an immediate need and a whole lot of influence would benefit from a communication from you once or twice a year. If they have a more immediate need, increasing your frequency is entirely appropriate.
Whatever you do, make these communications count.
Rather than telling a potential client that you’re just checking in (aka “I’d like to boost sales this month, you want to buy something?”), be proactive. Be helpful. Send them a resource, make a connection for them, do something in line with the themes of helpeting. Do some research so you can tailor your offer to something they’re currently dealing with.
You might even offer to do some free work for them or consult on an issue you know has come up in their organization, just don’t do this out of desperation. Be reasonable and think it through before you hit “send.”
Too much, too often and too aggressive will push away the people you’re trying to help and, instead of helping you boost sales, will hold you back and frustrate your efforts.