One of the big questions new photography business networkers have is how long will it take to get results? Although the answer is “It depends”, I can give you an idea of the process and how long it typically takes.
Some times you will meet someone & right away they will give you a referral. Actually they shouldn’t do this, but some people do. Why shouldn’t they do this? They should not be willing to refer their friends or customers to someone who they don’t know well enough to know how their referral will be treated. If they do that, they risk having it be a bad experience for the person they referred to you, and that will reflect badly on the referrer.
One should not expect much in the way of referrals from someone till they have gotten to know, like, and trust you because you have established visibility, credibility, and trust with them. This takes time. Typically 6 months to a year. But what you should expect is that they have one to one (121) meetings with you and perhaps test-drive your services on themselves. If that goes well, they might graduate to testing your services on their family or close friends, people who won’t fire them if it doesn’t go quite right.
Guess what, this is the same process in your photography business networking that you should use. So you can expect after six months to a year, you will start getting more than a few referrals IF the people you have been networking with have gotten to know, like, and trust you. This is more likely to occur if, when you meet with them, you really concentrate on learning about them, their business, how you can refer business to them, etc. If they see you are genuinely trying to help them in their business, they are more likely to want to find a way to reciprocate with your photography business. That is when you can help them understand who your ideal client or referral source is & how they can help you meet these people. You can help them understand what to look for and what to say, but first, make sure you know all those things about them.
Happy photography business networking! And let me know how these tips work for you.
David Coblitz – The St. Louis Artographer – specializing in Evidence Based Design photographic art for Interior Designers and Architects.