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Selling apples? Talk to the oranges.

Picture courtesy of The Busy Brain

Selling Apples? Talk to the oranges: Finding networks, clients and customers in unlikely places

The craziest thing happened to me last week. I was on Twitter and met a smart, smart woman named Michelle Minch. She’s a home stager (helps design and set-up homes to increase their chance of selling) and I noted that she was part of the Active Rain Network. I’d heard about Active Rain and understood it to be an extremely well-populated, well-ranked and well-used social media network for people in the real estate business – it supports and is virtually built on member blogs.

As we chatted, Michelle suggested that I join Active Rain. I scoffed, replying that I’m not a realtor. And, well, let’s just that say that she proceeded to school me on the reasons I should, in fact, be there.

Turns out that just because I’m not part of the real estate industry, perhaps because I’m not, these folks are quite interested in what I have to offer. I’ve had a simply amazing time learning to use their network, being astounded by how well it’s built and how well the members use it.

The Numbers, The Numbers: as of this writing and in only 7 days, I’ve had 135 comments on 5 posts and 1,621 pageviews of those 5 posts. Wowzah! Serious, serious kudos to the Active Rain community for really participating in the conversation and supporting fellow members.

So, I’ve been chomping at the bit wanting to share this with you because there have to be more opportunities like this for all of us, right?

Here’s what I’ve summized so far:

  • Look beyond where you’ve been looking to get your message out and to get new business. You’ve been going up? Go down. Left? Go right. Selling to the apples? Talk to the oranges. Promoting to the ladies at the beauty parlor? Check in with the sanitation department.
  • Think of a group that could use your product or service…find out if they have a club, a network and join.
  • Do you already belong to such a group? But you never thought of mixing business with pleasure or one business with another?
  • As always, be human, showcase your expertise and your self. Example, I had a bit of fun on my profile bio – let’s just say, my ‘about yourself’ didn’t come dressed in a pants suit.
  • Remember that this is a two-way street. Give to this new group and also learn from them, as they will do to and from you.

Have you had a similar experience? Do share…

Join the discussion 8 Comments

  • Wow, Julie, I’m flabergasted (ask anyone who knows me and that’s tough to do). All of a sudden I feel very shy. Thank you for your kind words and all the link love.

    Your blog is such a perfect fit for the Active Rain community, as evidenced by the fact that your 2nd post was FEATURED, which is no easy tasks. This speaks volumes about your ability to deliver your message about writing and blogging.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for putting me front and center on this post. I will be returning the favor.

  • --Deb says:

    It just goes to show that you NEVER know!!

  • Julie Roads says:

    That’s what I always say, isn’t it, Deb???

  • Alisa Bowman says:

    This is great advice. Sometimes we need to get out of our niche. You just never know who might be receptive.

  • Sandra Foyt says:

    Zigzagging, huh? Finding opportunities in new places sounds like a great way to stand out from the crowd. Usually, the advice is to target your audience, but I’ll be thinking about how to reach my target audience in unconventional ways.

  • Ed Bisquera says:

    Awesome to hear Julie! I want to know how you were able to pull in so many comments, but I think I know the answer already or at least I guess what it may be. Content and great writing on your part, I’m sure.

    Anyway, great to find your blog and follow you on Twitter.



  • Anne Mayhew says:

    Love the post and looking forward to expanding my horizons! Thanks for the share!

  • I love this idea of standing out in a place that you might not have otherwise thought you’d fit in. Right now I’m at a crossroads because I think I joined too many similar communities and am not really active in any – spread myself too thin.

    So I really like the idea of choosing a few, and maybe finding a few more of a different flavor.
    Always great advice here!

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