The economy understandably makes you interested in talking with any and all potential clients. Just watch out for ghosts.
“Ghosts ” go beyond kicking the tires, feeling you out on strategy and discussing fees. They’re the potential clients who could also be called “time vampires,” as they want to meet often and then have you draw up a full-blown proposal and/or contract. Then they disappear. You literally get no response.
Maybe they got cold feet or realized that talking about hiring a public relations consultant was more interesting than working with one. Some feed on your ideas and then decide they don’t need you to implement them. Whatever the case, they’re gone.
Hey, life happens. Cash flow tanks, people change their minds. But when you’ve put hours into meeting with a potential client, researching their needs and drawing up a contract, I say it behooves the ghost to get out his Ouija board and send you an email to let you know the deal is off.
So how did I become a ghost buster? A lot of it is instinct and experience. Sometimes you get the feeling that it’s just not a good fit and end it there. I also don’t put too much up-front work into a pitch. I generate a summary proposal and will meet a couple of times, but won’t move beyond that until I get a contract.
Once you trust your instincts, ghosts become less of a problem, leaving you more time to land that “monster” client.
Alex Greenwood has earned a reputation for success and ingenuity from his more than twenty years experience in public relations, journalism, marketing and broadcasting. His career has spanned several industries including healthcare, television, non-profit organizations and higher education. He founded AlexanderG Public Relations, LLC in January 2010. Find him on Twitter via @a_greenwood.
- The Harsh Economics of Social Media Tactics (socialmediatoday.com)
- Is It Moving You Forward? (chrisbrogan.com)
- Maybe You Are Just Not Ready For Social Media (Jay Bear’s Convince & Convert)