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Are you sitting at home, scratching your head, trying to figure out how to write a good introduction letter to a local business owner you want to work with? You're thinking to yourself, “I want to write something short, intriguing, something that really shows my want to help them.”
And of course, you can write a letter, but how do you make sure it gives off the message you want it to, without it being skipped over or worse, landing straight in the bin?
Yikes. This is definitely something that can stop you dead in your tracks, to the point where you just can't move forward. Your freelance business has stalled and you cannot for the life of you, figure out how to connect with local businesses.
It's simple. Put yourself out there and get amongst local business culture.
Um, Lise, what the heck are you talking about?
Hang in there with me, I do have a point! When it comes to working with local businesses, it's just like anything else in life, unless you're putting yourself out there, how will they even know you exist?
Follow these tips and grab the email swipe file so you can write that ‘short, intriguing' introduction letter now.
How to Connect With Local Businesses
Before you send that letter off, there are a few things you should do first, to give yourself the best chance of actually getting in front of the business owner for a meeting.
#1: Do your research
If you think sending a bunch of letters out to local businesses will net you a return in the form of unlimited freelance work, you should stop reading this right now and give yourself a hard shake. Hello! You have to put in the ground work first.
Research the businesses you're looking to work with. What do they actually need help with that they might not be aware of? For example, are you an outstanding blog writer? If so, then look at local business websites and check out how healthy their blogs are.
Look for those that aren't regular in their blog posts or are almost non-existent. Note that down and then proceed to the next step.
#2: How can YOU help them?
Once you've identified some businesses you'd like to work with, figure out what your game plan is. How are you gonna help them? What are you offering them that another freelancer can't? How would working with you improve their bottom line?
These are the questions you want to have answered for yourself before you even approach them.
#3: Network first
This is the last step before reaching out to them via an intro letter. Try and connect with them at a networking event, exchange business cards, perfect your elevator pitch and ensure that they know your name.
Be normal! Don't try and sell them on your services at the first introduction, instead, focus on them and their business, ask them question, learn things.
Then use it to your advantage by crafting an awesome introduction letter!
The Introduction Letter (for best results, send via email AND post)
Below is an example of a letter you might send to a prospective client. We'll stick with the blogging example from above.
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Thanks again for the tip on where to get fresh fruit on the weekend, it really paid off. The farmers market at Eagle Racecourse is awesome. Thanks again!
After we met, I checked out your website to see what you guys were up to and how you were connecting with your customers. As I mentioned, I'm a professional blogger and I work with companies to bridge the gap between what they sell and what their customers want.
I noticed that you have a blog up and running, but aren't utilising it to best advantage.
I'd love to meet with you over coffee, and provide you with some ideas around what you could be doing to increase customer engagement, both new and existing.
This is a no strings attached chat, coffee's on me.
I'll be in touch to set up a time, or feel free to respond with your availability.
Thanks again Joe, I look forward to exchanging more farmers market tips soon.
If you want to stand out, don't email this, instead, hand write it in a card, hand address the envelope and send it the old fashioned way.
Now, before you jump up and down, this strategy ONLY works if you've done the steps outlined above. You need to make that personal connection first.
Working with local businesses is different to working with people online, you need to take a more personal approach.
Did you grab the email swipe file yet? Download Now!
Do you have any success stories in reaching out to local companies in your area? Share them in the comments below!
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