Accordingly to Wikipedia – Follow the money is a catchphrase popularised by the 1976 drama-documentary movie All The President’s Men, which suggests a money trail or corruption scheme within high (often political) office.
But like many others I have a very different meaning…om re;ating it to everyday business
If you have something to sell and everybody does….. You need to be where the buyers are….that is the people with the money
While we all look at new and innovative ways to find business – new business – this involves spending money. While there are many sources of new business that can be highly cost effective.
In marketing we are constantly inventing new methods and terms in our quest to do it better and smarter. These days you will hear lots about Outbound Marketing which is about interruption (sometimes known as advertising) vs inbound is about discovery (helping people find you e.g SEO and SEM).
And within the new world of inbound marketing there are all sorts of varieties from content marketing (providing useful information to prospects and clients) to cultural movement marketing (supporting causes and events where you prospects gather)
Whatever you call it marketing is all about is trying to influence buying decisions by getting in your face or providing a subtle spark if interest via useful information.
But lets look at some simple tried and true methods that make sure are where your prospects are not where they ain’t … to paraphrase a famous baseball saying. Follow the Money!!
Its has never been easier or more cost effective to stay in touch and build loyalty into advocacy. Your past clients are you best marketers but you need to give them the tools and the encouragement to take the initiative. Don’t expect advocacy …ask for it… and foster it.
Use email, content, CRM, social media and build a referral engine for your business and reduce dramatically you outbound marketing costs by getting your loyal clients selling for you.
Fly Business Class
One of my colleagues who runs a successful consulting business has a unique way of prospecting. He Follows the Money and books a business class flight in the expectation he will sit next to someone who could use his services if only they knew it.
Eight times out of ten it delivers the results he is looking for.
Look at events and/or charities your prospects sponsor or support and put your support there. At least attend the same events and make it obvious that you are a supporter of the cause …bid at charity auctions, join sub committees etc etc.
Leverage your expertise to attract the interest of your prospects.
Bid at Charity Auctions …Sponsor events…be known… look at who other sponsors are and build a connection with them around a mutual cause.
Hand Car Wash
This is an old trick I learned when doing some consulting work for Multi Level/Network marketing companies.
They suggest the best recruiting grounds for new associates are places where successful people gather. One of these is where people with expensive cars and who take pride in their possessions go … the hand car wash.
So think about where the people you want to associate with might be found and spend time there too.
Conferences in relevant sectors and /or markets and /or geographic locations are a great place to find new business.
But you need to be active and be noticed (ask questions at sessions that also explain who you are and what you do)…and be networking all the time.
Also these days you can prepare well in advance by accessing the attendee list and making connection via LinkedIn etc with delegates you would like to meet. Set a time to make sure you dont miss them and make sure you explain why you want to meet and whats in it for them.
When I decided to build a business based in Singapore I targeted the most relevant industry Conference in Singapore. I made some good connections beforehand . I observed people who had respect of others and took the opportunity in the first sessions to ask questions that explained who I was and what my business had to offer.
As a result I had lots of people who wanted to talk to me …one became my first employee as COO based in Singapore . And without doubt he is the best possible person for the job. I could have spent a fortune on recruitment and not found anyone even close to matching the skills, experience and expertise I found when I met and got the chance to know socially this man at the Conference.
Go where your prospects are … not where they aint