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From the High Performance Enterpreneur-subarata Bagchi

From the High Performance Enterpreneur-subarata Bagchi

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Published by thinkmanav

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Categories:Topics, Art & Design
Published by: thinkmanav on Aug 05, 2010
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05/12/2014

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MY THIRTY GOLDEN RULES FOR GETTING THE EARLY CUSTOMERS
1. Write to all your contacts from the past without an exception and without any
expectations.
2. Build a prototype, actually keep building them all your life- show them off proudly
to whoever comes your way. The world likes a toy.
3. Buy a database of prospective customers, send them a Power Point or a PDF
document explaining what you do, not just an e-mail introduction.
4.Call on your larger competitor’s installed client base in person- do not just push
your products and services, ask if there isanything else you could do for them
given your capability and willingness. Ask for a small opportunity, a pilot project.
5. Always ask your existing customers to give you new leads.
6.Always go back to people who disqualified you in a bidding round for some
business you were competing for and update them on what is new and different at
your end.
7. Keep your banker periodically posted on what you do, ask her for leads.

8. Visit trade shows regularly and talk to people at the exhibition stalls about what you do. Specially make it a point to attend vertically-focused, industry specific trade-shows.

9.Seek alliances with industry leaders- these are typically product and service

companies that always need new partners to make their sale happen. Have someone exclusively focus on alliance building. Seek low-cost, co-branding opportunities for events along with them.

10.

Become a member of the right industry bodies. Attend their events and seek opportunities for participation through speaking engagements in their seminars and conferences.

11.
Write generic articles for the business press aligned to your area of work.
12.Regularly seek out industry analysts, brief them on your work, get some of them to
visit you. They love tracking upcoming companies, so seek out a few analysts and
personally focus on them over time.
13.
Build a relationship with a few academic and research institutions, do some
exploratory work with them, involve them with internal projects and events.
14.
Co-locate your senior most people in geographies where your customers are
located. Some founders must be physically based where customers are.
15.
Locate mutual opportunities with similarly situated, similarly sized
companies.
16.Brief the commercial attaches of the embassies of countries with whom you want
to establish a business relationship, invite them over. Though they are usually
focused on the established players, remember, everyone loves an underdog.
17.

Track new investments coming up in various fields through venture funding and private equity. This is publicly available information. Write to them and follow up with a phone call.

18.Call on your investor’s other investment companies; periodically nag your investor
for a business lead. Do not feel disheartened if nothing comes up, though.
19.
Call on your customer’s suppliers and see who else they are selling to. Go
along with them and make sales calls.
20.
Have a great website with search optimization done so that website-
generated leads can come in.
21.

When hiring senior people, seek business leads. Be careful about their non- compete agreements with previous employers and do not get them to violate other people’s intellectual property in the process. You can get sued.

22.Invite trade and educational delegations to visit your premises.
23.Speak to a very few large competitors and see if there is an alliance possibility.
24.
Personally build a relationship with select journalists who track your industry.
25.
Build a relationship with local government officials who promote your
industry.
26.When a new sales person is appointed, go along with the person and make calls
with her, discuss her rolodex and see if there is an opportunity.
27.
Periodically attend learning conferences and network with speakers and
attendees.
28.Do not fall into the Tender Loving Call (TLC) trap of repeatedly pitching to a

sympathetic person who has no capability to give you any business but is always very nice to you. Save that energy and without fear of rejection, make real sales calls on wooden-faced, tough–talking prospects.

29.
Speak to the person seated next to you- in an airplane, a business lounge, a
dentist’s waiting area or an industry event and ask him what he does.
30.Make cold calls, accompany your sales folks often and without being tired.

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