Portability Technology For Your Success
Profitable business requires focus on Relationship Marketing. It means creating, building and developing profitable, value-for-value business relationships for all parties. In a society that is moving and changing, you want to be able to operate effectively and efficiently from wherever you are, whenever you need to. In an economy that is going through struggles, you want to be able to quickly turn on a dime, change course and operate from anywhere there is business potential.
Technology can help you with this. Here are some tools which I have found to be enormously beneficial:
1. Smartphone For Voice Communication. You want a mobile phone that has good features for connecting with people. A removable SIM card gives you the ability to use various carriers, depending on what is best. In my international travels, I usually have a SIM card for each country, which provides a local number for contacts to reach me when I’m there. I’m also using Apple’s iPhone and have found the ability to access the Net very beneficial. As a road warrior, consider having two cell phones. Hey, things break and if your cell phone doesn’t work in a particular area or is lost or stolen, have a plan in place so you can at least make essential calls to prospects and important contacts.
2. Web-Based E-Mail Access. This is vital today. The Blackberry devices have become addictive today (often called “Crackberries”). This is because they provide good email access. However, be considerate of others. Don’t check email when you’re in an important meeting, a business luncheon or when it would be, what society used to call, in more cordial times---RUDE! Yes, have access always, but use your head about when to access!
3. Sheet Fed Scanner. I told you recently about the NetReceipts sheet fed scanner I use. I take it on the road as it only weighs a few ounces and connects to my USB port. With that I can quickly scan business cards, important receipts. hand-written notes, To Do lists, magazine articles and more. They are converted to a PDF and I email them to my assistant, to clients or for storage online. Organization is imperative for success. Using a tool like this can get you organized, save a lot of grief when trying to locate important information and help connect with people. Relationship Marketing shines with the right tools.
4. Audio And Video. Face it. We live in a media world. People love video and audio. Discover the ability to leverage these technologies. I show clients how they can use these and the specifics of what works best. For audio, you can capture quick thoughts you have and use them later. Video opens a world of possibilities to capture important pictures, scenes of important events for you, quick messages to others and more. See my Blog for examples of how you could use this medium to connect with others.
5. A Resourceful, Flexible Mindset. This is the most important. Have the ability to adapt as things go wrong (they will), situations changes (count on it) and people don’t do what they said they would (welcome to reality). The flexible and adaptable person survives while others whine and complain.
With all the tools you get, remember to be results-focused, not technology enamored. Use technologies to strengthen and build relationships. Think about it. The technology we use today might seem really nifty and groovy for now. However, what about the technology you were using just five years ago? Today it seems antiquated and even laughable. What do you think the latest gizmo or gadget you get from today’s slick magazine or hot website will look like in five years? Compare that with the satisfaction of a quality, value-for-value business relationship. As we all know, but must be reminded of from time to time, technology is nice, but relationships are what matter most.
Think of technologies that can enhance your personal relationships. Phones are one of the most important. They provide good connection with others. Just be safe and courteous when using them. And please --- no more calls interrupting business meetings, okay? If it rings, let it go to voice mail, turn off your sound and catch it later. Most of us are not doctors on call or waiting for the “Baby is now due” calls from a spouse. Concentrate on the person you are with now. This is basic courtesy. Voice mail is a beautiful thing!
Technology To The Rescue
Here’s a trick I share with my coaching clients: You can slice through mountains of email fast and be even more personal with a couple of key technologies. Yes, you can have both---warm personal communication and process email faster.
Think audio and video. Often I’ll send a quick audio message or video message to someone. They know it is me doing it and it not a mass email. They see my facial expressions (on video, of course) and hear the inflection in my voice. This eliminates any misconceptions, which can arise from mere text on a screen alone.
Of course, this should only be used in high value-for-value situations. You can’t do this for just anyone who sends you an email or you’d go nuts. However, when the communication represents high value in business (read serious business possibilities) video is worth it. Invest a few moments of time to learn how to create video (it’s easy). It will pay off in hours of time savings, increased personal contacts and increased business profits.
Leverage technology and focus on building quality, value-for-value, profitable relationships in business. This is what Relationship Marketing is all about and how you can use it to build your business.
Terry Brock is an international marketing coach and columnist who helps businesses market more effectively, leveraging technology. He shows busy professionals how to squeeze more out of their days using time-honored rules and practical technology tools. He can be reached at 407-363-0505, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or through his website at www.terrybrock.com.