How do you as an individual sell to the elusive small-biz market? Get out there and meet them! With entrepreneurs, it's all about the relationship.
Five top tips:
1. Go where the entrepreneurs are. Be seen as part of their community (e.g., through involvement in associations such as CAFE, TEC, EO, CATA, the CofC, etc.) If you don't know what those terms stand for, you have a chunk of catching up to do.
2. At networking functions, know whom you want to meet. Study the membership or guest lists to know who's whom. Arrange an introduction if possible, from a trusted mutual friend. And bring lots of business cards.
3. STOP SELLING! Ask good questions and listen: “Tell me about your business.” “What kinds of problems have you run into?” "What got you through that?"
4. Practice using the phrase, “How can I help you?”
5. When it’s your turn to talk, don’t brag about your expertise and experience. Tell stories that illustrate your experience and demonstrate the results you have achieved for your clients. (Make sure they’re pertinent!) Include vivid images and a happy ending.
Practice these stories in advance to make them as powerful (and as brief) as possible.
Simple as that!