Business runs off of an unspoken system of currency that is defined by the influence you have over others, what you can offer, and what you can withhold. These are the basic building blocks of business relationships and they are the most important capital you can have. Funding is great but without a strong investment of relationship capital it can only go so far. This is why people like Donald Trump can go bankrupt and still bounce back. He has invested in building valuable relationships that lead to success. Below are a few golden rules to building relationships that you can try today.
1. Re-package the brand to fit the audience. Whether you are trying to build relationships with potential customers of business partners remember that one size does NOT fit ALL. Your good idea or pitch should never be confined to one communication strategy. Take your messages and re-package them to fit the audience. Your same idea with different delivery will reach a greater cross-section of people and bring in stronger relationships because you are speaking directly to your audience in a language they want to hear.
2. Research your targets. When building relationships you need to know what your target is bringing to the table. You don’t want to waste time and money building relationships with targets that have little to offer you. Take time to research your targets and put more energy into those relationships that have the most potential benefit to your bottom line. This may sound cold, but this is business.
3. Don’t fall back on stereotypes. We like to make life easier by categorizing and labeling similar things and putting them in neat little boxes. This is a natural instinct and helps us thousands of times a day to make decisions and predict outcomes. When it comes to relationship building however, no one likes to be categorized and labeled. We like to be individuals that are special and separate from the herd. You must keep this in mind while building your network and cultivating relationships. Try to communicate to your targets that they are special to you and are not simply a number. Make someone feel special and appreciated and see how far it can go.
Building solid relationships with customers and business partners is the most valuable currency for success. Relationships are not prisoners to economic influence, political changes, or global shifts. They are solely based off of your efforts, which is at least in your control. Good luck from the Setster team and let me know how your relationships are building.