by Jeanine Vecchiarelli return to JayVee Media Link LLC
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Pinterest, You Tube, Instagram. We have all bases covered when we think about social marketing. We get so busy searching for target markets in our niches, creating and sharing quality content, reaching out and engaging that our whole world becomes an online presence. It was in this cyber whirlwind that I came across an interesting question in a LinkedIn group forum: “Is meeting for coffee wasting your time?”
At first I thought the poster was joking. But it soon became apparent the query was something with which the social media immersed gentleman was truly struggling.
One of the main objectives of social media marketing is building a bond of trust with our clients. This is so essential, since people are naturally wary of others they meet and interact with online. How can we REALLY know who is on the other end of our internet connection? One of the best ways to nurture trust is to allow our brands’ human side to show. Is there a quicker way to do this than to meet with our current/potential clients? Of course, judgment and strategy are necessary in order to make optimal use of our valuable time. If it is geographically feasible, and we feel there may be mutually beneficial business potential, it would be foolhardy not to take the time to meet for coffee. This is true if the benefit comes by way of quality referrals as well as direct business transacted.
The forum question received many responses. Every one of them emphasized the importance of face to face meetings as part of our marketing strategies. Discussion included properly respectful behavior; i.e., not hard selling, but informally discussing business. The closest thing to a negative reply simply reminded us not to participate if it is impractical, or if we have good reason to suspect that no business gain will come of the meeting. All told, the comments gave the practice a big thumbs up.
This was my submitted response to the question of whether meeting clients for coffee is a waste of time:
Top 5 reasons to F2F (face to face)
1)potential business together
2)understand their business better
3)your network may need their service
4)Get content ideas
5)A fresh perspective
and naturally sharing a cup of coffee.”