When I started Coaching by Ave Peetri Inc., I did not know anyone in Calgary. We had just arrived in Canada and I had made a decision to start my own company. Now 16 months later, I have no difficulties filling my business with my Ideal clients. When I analysed what I have done over the past year to get to this far, I came up with the following pointers to help you fill your pipeline:
– Know who your Ideal client is. You might be tired of hearing this from me, but I don’t think I can emphasize that enough. By knowing my Ideal client, I was able to focus my efforts in networking and marketing on the locations where I could find them and did not waste time in chasing them where they would never go.
– Pick an activity and be consistent with it. Once I had identified where I could find my Ideal clients, I kept going to the events and meeting people. In my business, normally it takes a few meetings before anyone will feel comfortable in signing up to hear more. Therefore consistency pays off. The same with social media activities – once you have started, do not stop in a month or two, keep going – the word of your good work will get around and people get interested in what you do.
– Analyse results. If you have been going to an event over three to four months and it seems that the people who used to show up, have stopped coming and the new people are not your Ideal clients or your potential Strategic partners, take a break for a month. Then when you go back and situation has not changed – you might want to take this event off your networking list. With social media it is even easier – observe what posts bring you likes and retweets and what remain unnoticed. Adjust your content accordingly.
– Get support. Being a small business owner comes with not having anyone to discuss ideas with or ask for feedback. Sometimes it is good just to get some support when things are not going too well – you keep putting in the effort, but the results are not there. I hired a coach pretty much the same day I started my company, and she has been a rock for me in helping me keep going and suggesting ideas that I had not thought of before. If you are not ready for hiring a coach, get some entrepreneurs as your support group – go for coffee and take turns in hearing each other out and giving advice.