Many people in business attend networking events so they can make new "contacts" for their business. The problem is, too many people are just out to spread as many of their business cards around as they can and hope for the best.
You also have "contacts" among your customers. Now that you've made the sale, you really don't have much of a relationship with this new customer -- yet. So what can you do to turn a contact into a relationship? Make your next contact PERSONAL. What I mean by that is, do a small personal favor or give a small personal gift.
In his book, The Little Black Book of Connections, Jeffrey GItomer talks about how effective this has been for him. He is in the habit of giving customers who have small children, books for them to read to their kids (or grand kids). Gitomer talks about the emotional impact he creates by giving these books. Once you "touch" someone in this way, your relationship with them deepens.
Another example he offers in his book is instead of taking a customer to lunch or playing a round of golf, take them to a driving range to hit a bucket of balls. Then hire a golf pro to come in and give your customer a lesson.
In these examples, he's creating a memorable event for the customer that he or she will remember for a long time. This can go a long way towards strengthening your relationship with that customer or "contact".
What have YOU done to turn a contact into a relationship? Post your thoughts by clicking on the Comments link below.