I was on the phone today with a contractor I met through LinkedIn. She recently moved to a new company based in Boston, but she visits the DC area regularly.
Aside from an interesting first live conversation, two things really stood out about the phone call.
First, she is meeting key feds and setting meetings through LinkedIn. Let me repeat that: meeting key feds and setting meetings through LinkedIn. These are not introductory meetings. They are to discuss current agency needs that this company is capable of meeting. Very cool!
Second, she set up a meeting with another agency where she had done business previously. The business was with her former company. Her former clients were happy to meet with her because of the work her previous employer performed. they were so happy, in fact, that they took her to meet the head of procurement for that agency, who just happened to have new work that her current company could do. And again, very cool!
Although the second scenario is far from unique, there are a few who still don't get it.
The first scenario, on the other hand, demonstrates the power of using social networks to facilitate relationship building.
Relationships have power in this market, regardless of whether you are at a new company or with the same company. Doing the work to the client specs is a payoff. Staying in touch with them has more payoffs. The best sales and BD people know this.
For those who doubt the power of LinkedIn, I hope to report back soon the outcome of the meeting she set by finding and meeting key agency personnel through LinkedIn.
If you are not yet leveraging LinkedIn fully, we should talk.