Question: I need to grow my network and my brand quickly. What is one piece of advice you have for getting in front of the right people?
Position Yourself as an Expert
"Start with clearly identifying who the "right people" are and work your butt off to provide these people value. Its one thing to get in front of these people, but if you want them to see you as a credible source you need to provide them value. By positioning yourself as an expert in a particular area, you are welcoming in the idea for people to rely on you."
Find Related Communities and Start Networking
"Join communities where the right audience for your business exists. It could be a Facebook group, a single event or recurring networking group. Either way, get yourself out there and you'll in turn get your brand out there. Ask what you can do to help those you connect with and they'll want to give back to you, too."
Give, Give, Give
"Often, we think in terms of "Get" -- what can I get out of this person or interaction? But if you approach it from "Give" -- what can I give or offer that's helpful or novel -- then you make a stronger impression. Always approach from give first, and the get will come."
Ask a Single Interesting Question
"With an excellent question, you become intriguing without necessarily having any qualifications. Ask people via email and social media for a short call. Soon, you can informatively name-drop by discussing what others had to say. Ask who else should weigh in and ask an introduction. The best part? You yourself become more interesting as you "question" your way up the food chain."
Decide Who the Right 10 People Are
"It is much better to talk in-depth with 10 very useful people than it is to scatter-gun emails out to 1,000 people that potentially may be interesting. Fully engaging these 10 people will also do much more for your network and brand. Work out the 10 key people you want to speak to and tailor your approach specifically to appeal to them."
Reach New Audiences by Providing Valuable Content
"If you are already an expert in your space and know how to provide value, reaching out to the top experts, bloggers and site owners within your space is a must. After establishing a connection, you can offer to provide valuable content to place on their site in exchange for a bio section at the end of the article. This is simply one of the best ways to get in front of a new targeted audience."
Define Your Unique Value
"I think of outreach like marketing -- if you're selling the same product as everyone else, nobody will pay attention. We've found, with our marketing and outreach at Sled Mobile, that our single biggest selling tool is how we're uniquely valuable. You should be able to express this in a single sentence, as the start of your outreach, to get them hooked."