May 18 2010
You possess a wealth of ideas and information that you can gift to others.
by guest Contributor Diana Nichols
(Chapter excerpted from the book, 42 Rules of Effective Connections)
One of the easiest ways to really connect with someone, and make an impression, is to give them a gift that has real value to them.
Notice the last part of the sentence: ”value to them.” Many times we give gifts that mostly have value to us – promotional items with our logo on them, business cards, brochures, etc. Occasionally, we give away free samples or coupons. These are good things, but hardly memorable. And most are seen as self-serving.
The gifts I’m referring to are not tangible things, but rather ideas. You possess a wealth of ideas and information that you can gift to others. You know people, you’ve had many life experiences, you have knowledge about your business. There’s a lot of stuff in your memory banks!
Any marketing guru will tell you that one of your basic tools is a list of tips and techniques that you should share freely. I’ll bet you can lay your hands on one, or ten, such lists right now. This is a great place to start in creating your “gift basket.”
Before you run off to the copy machine to make 1000 copies, let me say that the most effective way to give these away is one at a time, in your one-on-one conversations. (The conversation can be in person, on the phone, or via email.)
Look over the lists of tips. Find a few that are really meaningful, and not as widely known as others. These are the ones you want to use. Memorize and be ready to call them up.
Now, let’s add some more gifts to your repertoire. Looking over your “tips” list, are there any other tidbits that you’ve learned that have been especially helpful?
How about ideas or techniques you use in other areas of your life? Ways you manage your daily life that perhaps not everyone uses. Bet you have a few of those. They don’t have to be your original idea, just things that work for you – or someone you know.
Keep going. . .
You can add all the people you know well enough to be able to recommend them.
Also, make a list (mental or physical) of the helpful books and articles you’ve read lately.
Wow, your basket’s getting bigger! You have a lot of gifts to share.
And the best part is that now you have created the basket, you’ll be on the lookout for new ideas and people to add to it. It will just keep growing!
So what do you do with all these gifts? Look for opportunities to give them away.
When you make a connection, listen carefully to the other person. If you are really paying attention, you will often hear a clear clue as to what you can share that might be valuable to them. If you don’t – ask.
What’s your biggest challenge right now?
What would make you more successful?
How can I help you?
Use your own words, and be sincere. Even if you still can’t find anything really pertinent to give, at the very least you have given them the gift of caring enough to ask!
Just a few words about sharing your personal knowledge and experiences. The value in your experience for someone else is not the “story” about it. The who, where, how, and why are only relevant to you. It’s the in the what that the value lies for them. Just the facts, Ma’am. Share the lesson learned, the result, the essence. Make it short and to the point.
And finally, make sure your gift sounds like a gift – not like advice: Have you ever thought of…? I’ve had success with… Have you read…? Do you know…?
Giving is, after all, the best way to receive!
With over 30 years of business and entrepreneurial success, Diana brings knowledge, grounded wisdom, enthusiasm, and a wealth of creative resources to everything she does.
As a web and database developer, business and life coach, workshop creator and facilitator, artist and successful entrepreneur, Diana assists her clients in combining creativity, simplicity, practicality and a sense of adventure into a unique experience of success.
Diana Nichols, LCC
42 Rules of Effective Connections is available at 42 Rules [ http://42rules.com/bonnierossparker/books/], Happy About [ http://www.happyabout.com/42rules/effectiveconnections.php], Amazon [ http://www.amazon.com/42-Rules-Effective-Connections-Successful/dp/1607730464 ] and other fine retailers.