Hi. I met you last week at a networking event and yes, we exchanged business cards. We shared a few bits of information about our businesses and then you moved on quickly to someone else. I didn’t see you the rest of the evening to talk to you again so I could get to know you.
Yesterday, your newsletter arrived in my inbox. You offered me your specials and asked me to LIKE you on Facebook. You suggested I check out all your services and to contact you to order your products right away. I had to stop and think about where I met you. You see, there was no introduction to go along with your newsletter noting where we had met. No invitation to get together so we could continue our conversation. Nope. Just the newsletter in my email.
Unfortunately, this in-your-face approach is all too common and also the reason why many people are discouraged by networking groups. But maybe you are new to networking and don’t know that it’s important to build a relationship with someone instead of trying to sell to them.
Your newsletter reminded me of another “networker” I met a few years ago who circulated through the room and dealt out her business cards like she was playing a hand of poker and asked for everyone’s in return. The entire “card game” took less than 15 minutes and she left the event. The next day I received an email declaring what a pleasure it was to get to know me, followed by information on how I could build my business by buying from her.
You can bet I never called her. Which brings me back to you and your newsletter and my options.
* I can do nothing and let your newsletters continue to arrive
* I can simply unsubscribe.
* I can respond and let you know that while I appreciate you sending it to me, I am not interested at this time and please take me off your list.
* I can suggest we meet to begin the process of real networking so that we can get to know each other and work on how we can help each other build our businesses.
And then your next email arrived inviting me to your Grand Opening. Save the Date! Stay Tuned! With a promise of “Watch your inbox for more emails to follow very soon!”
My first instinct was to Unsubscribe immediately. You see, I’m not sure you and I will every be referral partners. But I truly am jumping to conclusions at this point and reacting versus responding.
I will email you. In the meantime, I will use a great new tool I was introduced to by my very innovative business coach, Dixie Gillaspie, that will allow me to manage my email while I decide how and when I want to respond.
The tool is called Unroll Me and it scans your emails each day and puts them into three categories that you have designated – Unsubscribe – Roll Up – and Inbox.
Unsubscribe needs no further description. Roll Up creates a summary of all your emails in a visual box format that you can scroll through and choose to read or not. Inbox keeps the emails you want to read streaming in. Unroll Me notifies you every day if new emails are detected and asks you how to categorize them. You can modify your choices at any time.
Unroll Me is free and can be found here. It has really simplified my email inbox activity and I now have more time for networking and following up with the people I meet.
Time to send you an email of my own to invite you to a “get to know you session” over coffee.
First I am going to “roll up” your emails!
Photo: Flickr Thomas Hawk