The Hand Crank Marketing Wheel: Stepping Away from Your Desk and Getting Face-to-Face

This article is part of the series of articles that talk about different approaches to marketing small businesses. Click here to read the initial article, Marketing Wheels: How to Keep Moving to See Your Business Succeed.

The Hand Crank Marketing Wheel is more manual in nature. Get out of the workshop/office and go face-to-face with prospects, potential partners, and competitors. This allows you to meet new people and keep a finger on the pulse of your industry. Maybe we’ve gotten a little too comfortable after being stuck at home during COVID.

I got a request a couple of weeks ago from a local graphic designer to meet in person. I get a ton of requests on LinkedIn to chat but talking with a local person was different. He made a New Year’s resolution to get out of his office and wanted to meet like-minded people. And he offered to buy me a coffee. As a result, we are discussing creating a strategic partnership and pulling together a local marketing mastermind group.

Types of Hand Cranks

  • In-person networking groups
  • Speaking engagements
  • Conferences
  • One-to-one networking
  • Farmers’ market
  • Craft fair
  • Workshop open house
  • Mastermind group
  • Home show

For several years I was the organizer of a Meet Up of Internet marketers here in Denver. We’d meet every month and have local experts do presentations on whatever they were good at. You might think it’s crazy to share our knowledge with competitors, but what came out of it was good friendships and increased knowledge. And there were people who found jobs through our group.

Being part of a craftsman marketplace can be a good way to get your face out there. You could set up a booth to sell some smaller stuff and bring a couple of bigger pieces as well as a book of your completed projects. I did this a couple of years ago. I didn’t sell squat that day, but I did get a lead to build out this guy’s man cave. I ended up doing a $8,200 project for him.

So, get out of the workshop and meet some people.

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