My wife runs her own home business selling heath and wellness products. She is very successful at this and is beginning to step up her efforts by building a website and actively prospecting. My wife also has celiacs disease, which is an allergy to gluten (wheat). She is a frequent poster and reader of a handful of celiac support sites. The other week I mentioned to her that she should leverage the celiac community. Afterall, my wife deals with celiacs and the products she sells have helped her immensely.
She posted to several of the celiac discussion forums about the products she uses and has gotten several responses and already some business. This worked for my wife for several reasons:
- She was already an active member of the community so people knew her and he post was not received as spam.
- She suffers from celiacs disease and
- She had information was that of great value to the forum members.
Let's look at each of these three things from a global perspective to see why she was successful.
- She was a member of the community. This is important because, like any community, outsiders are often looked upon skeptically.
- She shared characteristics of the community that allowed her to connect with them.
- She had valuable information that would help them.
If you are looking to network and become involved in communities for the sake of prospecting, you must always adhere to these three rules if you are going to be successful.
I would love to hear of other guidelines you think are necessary to successfully leverage communities for prospecting.
[tags]celiacs, communities, forums, lead generation [/tags]