Ice Breaker: Can you help?

12 replies
Because my local market is a county of 65,000, Im going to go B2B in person and I'm not quite there as far as my "ice breaker" with the Gate Keeper to the Owner or even lucking into the Owner as first contact in their place of business. I'm thinking of going in introducing myself as a new business owner in town, but the lead in from there will be crucial. I just dont want to blow it before I can get to asking the neccesary questions
#breaker #ice #introduction
  • Profile picture of the author LasseKohau
    Hi ( name of business owner )

    My name is JOE JOE, and Im a new small business owner in " your local area" !

    I was just wondering, if you could help me out very quickly - as I need to get into business !

    Do you know or have knowledge of a local union/community, where business people meet, to discuss business !!!


    Here are your icebreaker.....

    1) Be polite
    2) Ask for help - once
    3) Say thankyou for helping

    Do not do any marketing, unless your are asked... If they ask what you do, just say - I help local business get more business or get more leads, or make them visibel for customers on the internet ?

    From there, the call can develop....

    regards, LASSE
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Solem
    This is where it's helpful to have a lead generation piece of some kind so whether you get to talk to the owner or not (on phone or in person) you can at least leave them with a flyer and a free offer of some sort in order to get your relationship off to a good start.

    What services will you be offering and what marketing materials or systems do you have in place right now?

    I think a website where you can offer some kind of valuable free info (pdf report, cd, dvd etc...) is essential and you can get people there in any number of ways.

    If you want to go door to door, print up a flyer or have postcards made that direct prospects to your website to get your free gift, or if you really want to wow them, buy a PLR book with some solid basic marketing tips you can print up on Amazon for about $5 each to distribute. Imagine the response you'd get from a business owner if you walk in the door and say "Hi Mr. prospect, my name is Twagner. I'm a new business owner in town and I just wanted to quickly introduce myself and give you a copy of my new book with some marketing tips that might help bring you some more business. Please enjoy it with my compliments and I'd be happy to answer any marketing questions you have."

    What kind of impact would that have on YOU if you were the business owner?

    If you're interested there are some great WSOs here about self publishing on Amazon, and there's no shortage of great PLR and lead gen products you can buy depending on what you're selling, most of them are super affordable.

    HTH some,

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author tgglenn
    You are so right! Without their say-so, nobody gets in. Gatekeepers are the moat around the castle filled with alligators and you had better know where the alligators are when you cross the moat. But if you are nice to the gatekeeper, she will lower the bridge for you. I worked for a big chemical company back in the 80's, lots of competition. A method we used was giving out "novelties". You can buy these on the cheap online for quantities. Little fuzzy animals with a peel-off on the bottom that you can stick on the computer monitor or desk. They would really go ape over a 25 cent novelty. Or maybe a cute picture frame from the dollar store for their kid's or grandkid's pictures that they always have on their desk. Another method, tell them you have a personalized gift for them, ask them for their first name, buy a coffee cup and one of the "gold" or "silver" type magic-marker pens, write their name on it and present it to them when you walk in. Or try to find one with "World's Greatest Secretary" or something similar. It's chintzy, but they will appreciate your ingenuity. They will also remember you when you drop back by. I know these are old and passe but they will work more times than not! A funny greeting card also works well. Use your imagination and stand out from the crowd. They get calls and drop-ins day in and day out. Their main job is to get rid of people usually, so maybe you can do something special for them and they will get you to the "man". Hope this helps someone. Thanks for the thread, great info.
    Signature
    If all else fails.....stop using all else!!
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  • Profile picture of the author akazo
    You have to find something that you are comfortable with as an intro.. and it is really an individual preference. The prospects need to see that you are sincere to build up trust. I don't like the way Lasse mentioned because if you are not doing some type of business already, it is pretty transparent (IMHO).

    I prefer the method that Steve mentioned where you are just dropping off something useful. This in many cases will spark a conversation. If not, you have left something that they might read and get back in touch with you. The worst case is, they are not interested but you were up front about your visit.

    Good luck, and find what you are comfortable with doing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Summertime Dress
      You may find the book, "High Probability Selling - Reinventing the Selling Process" helpful. It's all about how to determine the high probability prospects so you can disqualify everyone else and not waste your time.
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      • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
        Because my local market is a county of 65,000, Im going to go B2B in person and I'm not quite there as far as my "ice breaker" with the Gate Keeper to the Owner or even lucking into the Owner as first contact in their place of business.
        You need to join a local chapter of BNI.

        Even the smallest community, like my town of 900 people, tends to have a chapter.

        It is a leads club that gets you face to face with 10-15 other business owners in town who agree to refer business mutually to one another.

        Some of my mentorees get 85% of their business either directly or indirectly from their BNI group.

        Surprisingly, it works both for introverted and extroverted people.

        Chapters exist in the UK and elsewhere around the world, not only in the U.S.

        Find a local chapter here...

        Find a BNI Business Networking Chapter

        Then network your way to success.

        Marcia Yudkin
        Signature
        Check out Marcia Yudkin's No-Hype Marketing Academy for courses on copywriting, publicity, infomarketing, marketing plans, naming, and branding - not to mention the popular "Marketing for Introverts" course.
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  • Profile picture of the author HorseStall
    Have you checked to see if there are any local chamber of commerces in the area? They will often hold meet and greet functions, for small businesses to network.
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  • Profile picture of the author MMnemonic
    what an interesting topic. Very nice indeed. Cheers!
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Start by talking to:

      # Business owners you already know.

      # The owners of businesses where you're spending your money (look at your spending habits and intentionally spend your money in small businesses where you get the chance to talk to the owner).

      # The business owners your friends and family know.

      # Ask everyone you talk to who they know (referrals from one business owner to another are the easiest to convert to paying clients).

      # Go to business networking meetings in your area (ideally go as the speaker but attending in any way will give you the chance to talk to business owners).

      # Go to events where business owners congregate (trade fairs etc).

      # Go to groups where business owners congregate (rotary etc). Being active in charity groups and sporting groups can make you some great contacts.


      That will make this whole process a lot easier.

      If you decide to walk into businesses a much more low key approach where you let the staff or the owner come to you and then just ask about their products or service then go from there to questions about their business is more likely to open up the conversation and keep it focused where you want it...on THEM not on you.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael William
    My ice breaker is to offer a free lead generating website. I show them an example then offer it for no cost. I will set it up on their domain and my reseller hosting. If nothing more comes of it then it took me 10 minutes to set up, but I still have them on my list for follow up.

    Then, of course they will want to have something to offer viewers (that does cost...)

    They may want SEO to get it ranked (that will cost...)

    etc, etc...

    Of course I will suggest that they need to be on page one of Google Places if they want to really get ahead and how my team was able to help company x in Tucson get there and how much their business increased... (foot is in the door, now they listen)
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    • Profile picture of the author Brandon Ellis
      Yea I agree with finding something you are comfortable with but that works well too.

      If they ask who I am or if they are expecting me I simply tell them that I am a new business owner in town and just wanted to introduce myself. Or I may say I just opened a new web design and marketing firm in town and wanted to simply introduce myself and see if he had a website up or had given thought to it.

      So far this has been working really well for me personally.

      p.s. Don't let the small details keep you from taking action (if this is keeping you from calling) I just started calling with the general intro and had the MINDSET of another local business owner which we are. 40 calls in I already have sold nearly 1,000 bucks worth of services with recurring monthly money, and will probably close 1-2 more this week just from those first few calls.

      "A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely
      more than much knowledge that is idle."

      Brandon
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      Want to go from ground zero to $40k a month? Private Message Me Now.

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  • Profile picture of the author derekmichael02
    Use the SBA if you can. Offer free one-hour consultations. Give away great knowledge to set yourself up as the expert. Then you're already the go-to guy in town!
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    [FREE VIDEO]: Secrets Behind A $16K Month

    [FROM Setmefreeinternetmarketing.com]: Money Making First ($1, $10, $100, $1,000, $10,000)
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