Recently, I sat down for coffee (well, hot chocolate and tea… neither of us actually drink coffee!) with Brett Daffron, Community Bank President of Commerce Bank where he oversees business banking for the North Region of Kansas City. As we waxed about the ins and outs of building professional networks, Brett shared with me a direct mail marketing campaign he and his team implemented this year. Here’s what the piece says:
How About Investing Just 10 Minutes with Me?
I’m sure someone is always asking you to lunch. But that’s a big time commitment – especially for someone you don’t really know yet.
So let’s grab a quick cup of coffee instead; no drawn-out meeting to disrupt your day. I want to get to know you and your business needs. And by getting out of everyday routines, we may just discover opportunities you’re not currently aware of.
I know it takes time and work to earn your confidence and create a relationship. But it can all start with a cup of coffee.
When asked what the intent of the campaign was, Brett had this to say, “My team and I recognize that our current and prospective clients are busy professionals in their own right. We want to do everything we can to build solid, trusting relationships and help them to be successful without being a burden on them or their time.” Wow. No surprise; I just love the message!
As someone who is asked to get together quite frequently, what a breath of fresh air it would be to receive an invitation like the one Brett shared… that the person making the overture a) wants to get to know me, b) doesn’t want to take a whole lot of time, c) would like to uncover ways he/she could be of service to me, d) recognizes that relationships are built over the long-term and e) is willing to start small.
The overarching lesson is this… whether you’re reaching out to someone in a sales capacity, looking for advice about your career search, interested in working together on a community project or simply working to build out your relationship base, consider the message you are sending, respect your contact’s time and seek to build the connection through a series of touches vs. a one-and-done interaction.
Do you have an example of an appealing way you were invited to get to know someone? Have you done something clever yourself that you’d like to share? Please do so by visiting CoffeeLunchCoffee.com and leaving a comment so we can all learn from your insight.