Imagine my surprise when I worked out that over the last two weeks I’ve had 10 new business leads which combined will provide a substantial boost to Diligent Design. A handful are new ventures with existing clients, a few others are reactivation of old clients and the rest are brand new business.

How did I attract so much new business in just two weeks?

Well, it initially started about a month ago when I decided I needed to pull my socks up and get some more business. I like being, and operate better when I’m busy – if I’m not working at capacity I start to stagnate.

My partner also runs his own business and I’d noticed recently how busy it is and how he gets new client leads on an almost daily basis so one Sunday morning over coffee at Pret I picked his brain about what he’s doing and what I could do for my business. He told me that the key is to work on your business as well as in it. We decided I needed to set aside some time to build and grow Diligent Design.

We put together a master plan of actionable tasks and agreed to review them every Sunday over coffee. Here’s the first few things I did:

  1. I redesigned, re-structured and re-wrote my website to look worthy of a website designer
  2. I added a number of data capture methods to my site
  3. I wrote a new business letter and got together a list of prospective businesses to send it to
  4. I wrote, researched and set up a Google AdWords campaign
  5. Tested a new referral programme with one of my clients

The thing is that none of these steps had any direct impact on the new business that I attracted. None of the new leads came via the website, I never posted the letter, I didn’t activate the AdWords campaign and the client I set up the referral programme with has been stuck in the US because of the volcano so hasn’t seen it.

What I did next…

Having analysed my lead sources I’ve learnt that my business, like many other small businesses, thrives on referrals and recommendations. My network of contacts is my biggest asset. It turns out that all the new business has come as a direct result of a recommendation and referral, even the ones I initially thought had come via my website. Amazingly in some cases there are three or four degrees of separation between me and the person who made the enquiry.

Here’s the top five things I did to galvanise my network into action

These are the things I did that have all directly impacted on one or more new projects coming my way:

  1. Met up with people I haven’t seen in a while for coffee
  2. Called up/emailed others to arrange meetings
  3. Connected with more people on LinkedIn
  4. Started blogging on my website and pushed the feed through to my LinkedIn and Twitter accounts
  5. Stepped up my activity on Twitter and again published my tweets to my LinkedIn profile

10 invaluable lessons I’ve learnt this month:

  1. When you focus on getting more business and take action, you get it
  2. When you monitor and track new lead sources, you know exactly which activities generate them
  3. When you stop doing the things that don’t generate business for you and concentrate on those that do, you get really busy
  4. When you have systems, things run smoothly
  5. When you have a master plan that gets reviewed weekly, things actually get done
  6. When you make time for thinking, you have great ideas
  7. When you set goals, you achieve them
  8. When you’re doing something enthusiastically, you’re rewarded with energy to do more
  9. When you have someone to bounce ideas off, those ideas get refined and improved
  10. When you find someone doing something successful, copy their method!

I read a lot about the Law of Attraction and the successful habits of successful people and one thing they say in common is that wishing alone is no good, you need to act. If you set goals, visualise success and believe you can achieve it, then you’ll automatically start to focus attention and efforts on achieving your goals. I sent out a message to the universe that I was ready, I worked hard and it delivered.

This is my story but I’d love to hear about your secrets for success – please help more business be successful by leaving a comment…

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