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Monday, June 19, 2006

Networking Steps in IT Consulting

An IT consulting business start-up venture is dependent upon patience and perseverance. The most difficult part is getting new clients, and the following are some steps you can take to get started in the IT consulting business.

CREATE A FOLLOW-UP PLAN FOR NETWORKING CONTACTS

When you get each new business card, write down the date you met the contact and any notes that remind you of details about him/her. If they gave you a specific follow-up request, you should plan to find out the answer to their question and get right back to them, meaning tomorrow if not sooner. If you can’t make a personal call, you should send a hand-written note that expresses you are interested in seeing the prospect again and to give you a call if anything comes up between now and when you can meet. You should include your card in the note and add the contact card to your Rolodex and put them on schedule for 30 and 60-day call-backs.

RECONSIDER YOUR NETWORKING ORGANIZATION PLAN

You should reevaluate the different networking groups you attended and think about which ones you liked along with which ones you gauged had the most business opportunities. Pick at least 4 groups and officially join them to increase your profile as an IT consulting figure in the community. You should drop off your check personally to the director or office manager and explain a little bit about your IT consulting business and the type of work you do. You should ask them how to get to know small business owners that will be most likely to need your IT consulting expertise.

At each networking event, talk to eight - ten people. Some may not be worthwhile, others will be potential clients, and still others might be referrals. Stay organized and keep dropping your name.

CREATE A DIRECT MAIL CAMPAIGN

You should keep your testimonials on-hand from earlier clients and get those you find at your networking organizations’ on disk. Send out a letter and your business card to each member that might fit into your IT consulting sweet spot. Offer these prospects a free 30-minute needs assessment coupon that expires and tell them you look forward to meeting with them again at upcoming events. After you have done this, you can always follow up with a personal phone call.

Blogged By: Computer Consulting Kit