So to continue my discussion from Building Business Part I….
The first step I take in building business leads is by attending workshops and industry specific trainings to meet the right people. For this particular journey it began with a seminar sponsored by Castle Press in early 2008. I figured some of the people in attendance may be in need of photography, photography education or consulting and I was the person they needed to talk to. The way I get their attention is simple. I arrive early and select a seat that gives me a lot of visibility. And then I wait. I make sure I listen to the questions and comments and when someone says something that leads me to believe they may need me or there may be an opportunity for me to pursue, I wait a bit and then I ask a relevant question or make a thoughtful comment that draws attention to me. If the targeted person looks my way…bingo! The hook has been set. If not, I wait for a break and introduce myself to them. We talk a bit and I try to qualify them to see if I should pursue them further. I have gotten many photography jobs and teaching assignments this way. This method works well for me but I have to be patient.
There was a person there who was (and still is) teaching at FIDM. He asked a question and per my previous comments, I followed up with him on a break and in less than six months I was working in the Graphic Design Department teaching Photoshop and photography classes at FIDM. From that same seminar, I also joined the PIASC. They sponsor webinars for their members as does their sister organization, PINC. I took a Photoshop webinar from them recently and it became immediately clear that Kelly (who runs OnlineInstruct.com) was incredibly capable as an instructor and I made sure to connect with her after-the-fact to inquire about working with her company putting on my photography programs.
And that’s how this particular piece of business happened.
I’m on to the next opportunity, again at Castle Press. It’s all about social media this time. Who knows what I’ll turn up……..