Mark Twain said “The best way to cheer yourself up is to cheer somebody else up.”
It’s a perfectly natural human interaction to enjoy making people’s lives better, adding to their joy, making their day. If we sell something or a service to someone and we exceed their expectation’s we have added value to their life.

Sometimes with previous customers, colleagues or friends it’s the fact that we get in touch after an absence that will cheer them up, because you haven’t been in touch in a while.
Why then does it seem that every year at Christmas or times like weddings, funerals, and major birthdays that people seem to say “we should meet up more often”? Outside forces and events are controlling these contacts rather than you, the business, the sales person, colleague or friend.

The ability to travel by planes, trains, busses, trams and the car makes meeting up face to face so much easier. In these times of mass communication it’s never been easier to keep in touch with customers, family and friends. The internet, mobile phones, digital media as well the old forms of communication like writing a letter mean that we can maintain business friendships and relationships so much more efficiently and easier than ever before.

We can transfer this thinking into our professional selling and long-term business world as well. As The US President Dwight D Eisenhower said “Plans are nothing; planning is everything.”
We need to create a plan and diarise exactly who you want to keep in touch with, how often, and the best method. With some people or customers it might be only a call, a present or a card at Christmas. Planning it and then doing it makes all the difference. People love when you remember their birthday or key anniversaries. Maintaining contact and keeping the channels of communication open mean that you are in their world and on their mind.

Making time to do this and planning it completely make sense. Using technology and reminders make it easier and more effective. Face to face, zooming, talking, Facebook/WhatsApp, emailing, writing, all have their pros and cons. It’s just vital that you make the effort, because the art of networking is very much enhanced by consistency, planning and action. The old adage of “fail to prepare then prepare to fail” works here. Don’t leave it to chance or the efforts of others, because you are missing out on the connection and the opportunities that come from being with people that matter to you, letting them help you and you help them. The “if only” factor in life is never good, whereas by keeping in touch you are enriching your business life by so much more. Planning it and executing it successfully will make it easier and more effective. We can all think of customers who said “I’m glad you got in touch, because I was just thinking about ordering something that you do”. Would you definitely have got the order or opportunity if you hadn’t maintained communication?

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