How to Use LinkedIn at Networking Events to Increase Sales

small business dream

Today we’ll talk about LinkedIn, and how almost any business can use LinkedIn to increase their sales and not tick people off in the process.

LinkedIn and Facebook are the two big ones that we use. LinkedIn is required in most businesses, particularly in North America. I didn’t start using LinkedIn ’til only about five or six years ago. At first I was like, “What the heck is LinkedIn? How’s that going to help me? Isn’t that just really for putting your resume up online and people follow what you do?” That was the question I had. So, I started looking into LinkedIn and developing a LinkedIn profile.

How Important Is Social Credibility in Business?

business linkedin

I realized how important it was to add credibility to who you are in business. I’ve seen a lot of good profiles and bad profiles (profiles with pictures of their dog instead of their actual picture, pictures that were cropped out from a group photo, pictures that are out of focus or have a really bad background, pictures that are not professional-looking, etc.).

LinkedIn is not Facebook. It’s not for posting what you had for breakfast or for dinner. If I’m going to be looking for people I want to do business with, I’m not going to Facebook, first; I’m going to LinkedIn.

Collect Data at a Networking Event in 3 Simple Steps

There’s a neat little system you could do at a live networking event using LinkedIn to capture the whole room’s data. Here’s how it works:

1. Download the LinkedIn app.

small business dream

One of the things I learned by me starting just from scratch over the past five or six years is there’s a way that you could get everybody in LinkedIn if they have the app. It’s really important that you download the LinkedIn app to your phone.

2. Be in control of the room. Find an opportunity to ‘control’ the room and get a chance to get the microphone to tell everybody to open up LinkedIn. At the very bottom of the LinkedIn app there are five icons. The first one looks like a little house. The second one is two people sitting side-by-side (that’s the one that you want to click). When you click that button, most of you in your LinkedIn app will have a little blue circle appear on your bottom right corner of your screen.

3. Find other users in the room.

small business dream

That little blue circle has a picture of a person with a plus button. Clicking that little blue button opens up three menu items on your phone. The very first one says, ‘find nearby’—that’s exactly what it’s going to do. Turn it on, and now everybody that is in the room that is on this page in LinkedIn will appear so that you can connect and talk with them right there in the app.

They need to make sure they’re doing it on the app, they’ve enabled Bluetooth, and they need to enable their location services—couple of things they have to do, but LinkedIn will let them do that right off the bat and you can use this to connect with an entire room in seconds. It’s really interesting because it works off of a Bluetooth mesh, so it’s not even a matter of it only meets people as far away as your phone’s Bluetooth circumference. It actually goes to the farthest guys in the room’s phone. We’ve been at events where we actually picked up on someone that was at a train station a good mile from where we were. So, it’s really, really fantastic technology, but it only works if you’re ‘in control’ of the room.

Things to Keep In Mind

1. Ask for permission

mobile data

My recommendation is, if you’re going to try to do this tip during your 30-second or your one-minute personal introduction in a room, make sure you have the organizer or the main speaker’s permission, because if you go fire up something like this and the speaker wanted to keep the data only for him, you could really, really frustrate someone and probably not be welcomed back to their events again. So, make sure you get permission.

If you’re worried about ‘giving away your data,’ it’s actually the opposite. What we found is everywhere we’ve done this, the tone of the event changes to, “Wow, this is one of the best events I’ve been to. I got some really, really helpful tips that I can take away and use in my business.” We talked about it at a big event, but it also works if you’re just sitting around a boardroom with a bunch of people and you all want to connect real quick. It’s extremely fast compared to any other way of connecting with people.

2. Make People Want to Connect with You

We have some networking events that we go to every week. When I stand up to do my forty seconds, they know what I’m going to do. They’ve already got their phones out, they’re already on LinkedIn, they’re all ready to go and get in the room because they know the power of being able to connect. You become the ‘hero’ that everybody connects to with, and you know that the speaker is going to forgive the fact that you take one minute and forty seconds instead of your allotted forty seconds because it does take a little time to get everybody to turn it on and get interacting with you.

You need to be animated when introducing this cool tip. Stand up and get everybody to hold up their hand. When I do it I tell everybody, “How would you like to connect with everyone in the room, raise your hand. Hold your phone up. I want you to use your phones right now. Get your phone in your hand. Everybody, put LinkedIn on your phone. Open your LinkedIn app. Raise your hand when you’ve got LinkedIn on your phones.” Make it interactive. Step by step, tell them exactly how to do it to get in there and then connect.

Now, if you’re not going to send somebody a message, don’t do it. Just connecting with somebody doesn’t do you any good. At least reach out and say, “Hey, what did you think at the event tonight?” Do something, say something, and make that connection. This helps you remember where you met them. So, for instance, if you copy and paste it to everyone you’re connected with and you get good engagement right away, you’ll be able to see where you met them when you open them up in the future.

Why Small Businesses Should Use LinkedIn

target market

So how can a business owner actually start increasing his sales from the comfort of his bathrobe, over the morning coffee with a LinkedIn system that allows people to literally sharp-shoot the best people as far as their ideal client, tracking, how much work’s involved, and what the flow of the messages are? You create the engagement instead of just being another person that sends you the 9-page introduction the minute you connect to them.

What many smaller businesses don’t have is a big budget. Same with small businesses, say, a restaurant that’s not busy for three hours in a day, or someone who owns a clothing store, or a hair salon. Here’s something you can do with a free LinkedIn account. You don’t even need premium or Navigator. You do it with free and you could target demographics.

The great thing about LinkedIn is you can go and you can only search, say, for CEOs in Vancouver, you can search for anybody that has a certain thing in their description somewhere in their profile, like a title or a job description, skills—any of these things can all be searched for in LinkedIn.

Let’s say you’re a travel business—cruises and all. You could search for certain areas and search for certain likes and skills. You could search for people that are in the right demographic area like people that are most likely traveling. A teacher maybe? They get their summers off and they’ve got the holiday time. They probably save up for a vacation. Maybe that’s your perfect kind of client.

Be sure to put some thought into this step, because if you target the wrong people it’s not going to work. So, you do need to think outside the box a little bit in trying to define what demographic of people through what LinkedIn allows you to select (and it shows you all the things you can select from) would lead you to your people. So, it’s a really important part of your system that doesn’t even really get written down other than ‘go look for the kind of people you’re looking for.’ Defining that and figuring out how to search for them is half the battle.

Once you’ve done that, my system is simple. You’re going to reach out to and attempt to connect with 10 people a day. Consistency is key, and you do it the first thing in the morning. First thing with your morning coffee or your morning breakfast, have your computer out, your LinkedIn out, and attempt to connect with ten people in your demographic.

We have this availability in Small Business Dream, enabling users to track it all in the software, but you can do it manually with a spreadsheet. There’s lots of ways to do it. We just happen to have a tool that makes it really efficient. In other words, we’re giving you a great system but we just think it’s better if you use our tool.

The 10-a-day Rule — and Why It’s So Effective

I’ve used the system for years, taught the system to people in different businesses to be able to use it effectively, and what I found is that most people don’t have a lot of time. So, if I can show you how to use it in just 10 minutes a day to connect with 10 new people every day and then do the follow-up, they’ll give that a shot. I could find 10 minutes in the morning before I head off to work. You do need to find the time to follow up as well, so this will take up to an hour a day, throughout the day, but at 10 a day you can handle this follow up.

You’re going to get some follow ups and some questions back. If you do 50, you’re going to get a lot more questions back, but then you’re going to have even more follow-ups. Next thing you know, you’re into eight hours every third Friday just because that’s how things start to fall. So, spreading it out will keep it much more consistent, easier to maintain and easier to keep up to date with.

Ten is a magic number. That means you would attempt to connect with every day, 300 people every month (that means you’re working weekends, or, just do twice as much on Friday). Out of the 300 people, only about 25% are going to accept your connection, and out of those 75 people that accept your connection, only about 25% of them are actually going to engage with you. So, only about 15 or 20 people will actually turn into a conversation. And out of that, only 25 percent will turn into a possible conversation. So, four or five, and maybe only one will end up being the customer.

Create a Sales Funnel to Boost Online Engagement

Of course, you can increase your odds to a degree with things like a lead magnet where there’s a free giveaway (if it’s relevant to them), or a free call. A lot of it will depend on what tools you have in place to create the maximum amount of engagement. So, having a simple lead magnet funnel where you can collect their data outside of LinkedIn and with the right giveaway or giveaways, you might be able to increase that and create engagement a little bit more because you’re offering help. Don’t give them something they don’t need. Send them to a lead magnet funnel type scenario if what you had you knew could benefit them without a cost. So, it’s not a salesy thing; it’s a true benefit.

If you go to, it will take you to a sales funnel that will allow you to put in your name, your email and click a button, and you’ll be able to download my book. You’ll be able to learn the whole system step by step on how to increase your sales quite rapidly again. If you have the time and you can do 20 a day and you’re ready for the ‘snowball effects,’ you can do it faster. If you have an employee who’s underutilized, it doesn’t have to be you.

Once you’ve actually written all of the follow ups, directions and the content that you want to use through your follow up, you literally assign this to a personal assistant. You can assign it to your daughter, to your son, to your friend’s daughter. It doesn’t have to be you until things get serious. When they get serious your assistant, or whoever is operating the controls for you, would then just reach out and say, “Hey, you need to intervene with this person because they’re ready to talk.” The great thing about my system is it’s not confined to LinkedIn.

I wrote specifically for LinkedIn, but you can do the exact same system in Facebook. It’s not as easy to target and find people in your demographic without ads on Facebook (Facebook really doesn’t want you reaching out and doing stuff). But with simple ad campaigns or reaching out to your friends, it could work. So, there’s definitely ways to be able to do that.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, at the end of the day, the way my LinkedIn system works is not to rely on LinkedIn. You need to pick up your phone and talk to people you need to as quickly as possible, making a real genuine engagement and have a conversation. You don’t want to talk for hours. Also, try to get out of LinkedIn because a lot of people don’t have notifications on in LinkedIn. Some only check it once every three or four days, so quickly in your process, you want to try to capture their contact details whether it be phone number, email, etc.

Another way to contact them outside of LinkedIn is by trying to build your list. Build your Linkedin list into your actual money-making list. It’s essentially your goal. Consistency is everything on LinkedIn. If you’re brand new, the magic number to get started to get to a number of connections is 500. You’ll see in your profile how many connections you have whether it’s under 500, and then it goes 500 plus. You could have a thousand. That way people will connect with you better, you’ll find your connection rate will increase the more connections you have.

Also, make sure that you send a custom message when you ask to connect with somebody. Don’t use any of the LinkedIn default stuff. That’s what the lazy people do and that’s why it doesn’t work. If you download a copy of my book, I show you some things that I use that are really popular, that work well, to be able to increase the engagement. If you can turn that out of the 300, increase it from 25% to just 35% accepting your friends in LinkedIn requests, to 50%, that would be great.

I now typically get around 75% of the people that I asked to engage and connect with me; they accept my connection. Why? Because I have over 6,000 connections on LinkedIn right now, and I’ve done that organically with people, not through any system, but it’s my own system—nothing automated, one person at a time, connecting with the right people to build my businesses.

If you’re interested in learning how to increase your sales quickly with LinkedIn, go to If you do decide you need software to help you do it more efficiently, Smallbizdream can help.

Getting the Most out of Business Networking Events

small business dream

Today we are going to talk about that one little thing people don’t like to talk about—business networking events. A lot of people think they’re useless. “Why even bother when we can just do everything online?” That is absolutely correct—if you do not want to succeed in your business.

Truth is, going to networking events can increase your sales very, very rapidly for little or no cost. Should you do them? Yes! Should you do them if you’re a 20-year-old business? Definitely.

Picking a Business Networking Event

small business dream

Let’s start off with what kind of events you should go to. There are free events and paid for events. Picking an event is more about where would the people you’re looking for be hanging out. Don’t go to an event full of scientists if you sell something that’s not scientific or something that scientists hate. Figure out where your people hang out. Do they hang out at the local Chamber of Commerce events? Do they hang out at free meetups? Where do they hang out?

We’ve been to a lot of networking events—free events, paid events, Chamber of Commerce events, Board of Trade events, inexpensive events, expensive events.  In our experience, paid events usually have a higher level of people; people more likely to do business to business type stuff. Free events tend to be more business to customer type people, or businesses that are just starting out with a little bit less money.

So if you’re selling a little bit higher ticket item, a paid event will probably get you a better audience because they’re already people that have been proven to pay for stuff, and because they’re paying for the event. It just usually gives you a different caliber of people. In the B2B, especially, paid events are awesome. In the B2C, they’re also awesome; you just get a little bit different caliber of people. Meetups are great because they’re super-specific. Meetups that cost money would, again, qualify for both.

Do’s and Don’ts of Going to Networking Events

1. Attire

small business dream

Let’s talk about something really simple—how should you look when you go to a networking event?  Basically, you want to look like the person people want to do business with. Sometimes you’re feeling a little bit slow, and you’re not really in the mood, and you know that most of the people that go to that event usually don’t wear a suit and tie (usually casual at best), so you think of going casual in your golf shirt as well. Most people won’t take you seriously in that attire.

Think about the last time you went to anywhere out in public, and you saw somebody dressed in T-shirt, jeans, and riders, unkempt, and unshaven. How do you think of that person? Do you think of him as being successful? Do you think that they can do a great job of selling you $300 an hour business consulting, or accounting, or a lawyer? Maybe they could. They could be incredibly skilled. But you’re not going to know it by looking at them. However, if you see somebody dressed in a suit, even if it’s not a really expensive one. Not necessarily a tie, but a nice shirt, cufflinks—subtle things. It can set people apart. It’s all about first impressions.

I hear it all the time at networking events as people make excuse for their poor attire, “I dress this way because I believe in comfort.” Ninety-nine percent of the time, the more you learn about the people that go on and on about comfort, and the reasons they’re going to be different, it’s always been “I wear all these crazy prints because it’s my identity.” Fair enough. They’re allowed to do that. But if you’re there to increase your sales quickly, we recommend you put your ego and yourself on the shelf, and do what’s going to attract you the highest quality and biggest numbers of people that want to interact and buy stuff from you.

2. Accessories

Let’s look at little things like accessories. We see this all the time with men and women—excessive jewelry, piercings, tattoos. The reality is you can be super proud of your tattoo, which is awesome. And, as long as you understand that having that tattoo is going to turn off 30 percent of the potential customers (and you’re okay with that), you shouldn’t change.

But if you’re about rapidly increasing your sales, which is what Small Business Dream is all about, I’d recommend covering up the tattoos, not because I hate him or love them. It’s about, “Do you turn off that one guy or one lady that might have brought you a $50,000 contract because of your tattoo pride?” Our advice is, don’t do anything that might turn away a customer.

A lot of people will prejudge, unfortunately. Personal preference is completely up to you. But when somebody has seventeen piercings on their face—tongue, lip, nose, eyebrow, earlobe—and has tattoos running up the side of his neck, it can be a little bit of a turn off. Unless they’re looking for a tattoo parlor owner or a piercing person, they’re probably not going to engage with that person. It’s just human nature. If that’s your business, you’re going to want to show off what you do. But that’s the type of clientele you’re going to attract and you’ll go to the networking events that are specific for that type of clientele

3. Dressing up for the occasion

We were at a branding event where there was a lady who sold her own custom clothes, and she went against the speaker quite strongly and saying, “Well, I wear my own clothes instead of the converting colors. I wear my super colorful clothes because then I’m my own billboard.”

She just went on and on, and he looked her right in the eyes and said, “So why are you here learning about branding to make your business better? Because, obviously, what you’re doing isn’t working as well as you thought.”

And then he asked the crowd and he said, “Hey everybody, if you met her saying that she has her own clothing brand, and you met her at a networking event, would you have trust in her? Would you have belief in her with the way she’s dressed?” And basically the whole room said “No.”

So there she was, wearing her clothes that she’s so proud of, and trying to sell online. They weren’t even bad-looking clothes. But the trust of people thinking that she’s the person to engage with for clothes in a business setting was not there. So her ‘billboard,’ as she thought it was, might be appropriate to some events like a fashion-centered event, but not necessarily the right thing to do in a business networking event where, maybe, she’s looking for distributors of her clothes.

We’re not here to judge people for what they do. We’re simply saying, if you want to accelerate your sales as fast as possible, dress the part of the networking event you’re going to. It’s critical.

4. Blending in with the crowd

It’s really hard to overdress, but you can definitely underdress for the event. Still, you can overdress. For instance, don’t show up to a networking event in a tuxedo and tails, unless everyone else is in tuxedo and tails. The rule of thumb is, you want to be at par with the speaker of an event. But what about business tycoons like Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs? These guys dress the way they want to dress and it doesn’t seem to impact their businesses at all. The simple answer is, when you have that many ‘zeros’ in your bank account, you can dress the way you want to.

Why Go to Networking Events?

small business dream

Why would somebody that’s in business for 20 years and trips across us with our Small Business Sales Blueprint tell people to start going to networking events?  Why would they even think that that’s a good idea? What are reasons someone in business for 20 years might want to go reengage face to face?

Stay top-of-mind to your clients. Let’s look at seasoned companies. There’s always new people coming out. It’s branding. It’s getting your face known. We go to networking events and we’ve been doing it year after year. People are seeing us year after year at the events. That trust, that rapport starts to get built up because we’re still there. We’re still doing the same thing. They’re seeing your face over and over again, and the familiarity creates trust. And trust eventually creates referrals and puts you now top of mind, and that turns in sales.

Test things out in the real world. If you are that person who has a 20-year-old company or a-10-year old company, and you’re trying to find a way to increase your business quickly, the biggest advantage of going to a networking event is you can start testing out the things you say online, in your store, in your interactions on a whole bunch of people all at once. Say, you’re thinking of a tagline for a video online. You can go, “Hi I’m Dennis. I’m with Small Business Dream, and we are the number one global small business sales experts,” and I can look someone in the eye as I deliver that message and see if it resonates or not. It works really well for testing headlines of email campaigns and all kinds of things. And if you go there and you just smash it (you go to ten networking events in a month), you’re going to have people talking about you.

Connect with other businesses. We go to networking events to meet people. Are we going to thenetworking event to sell people? Nope. Are we going there to make friends? Yes. However, we’re not really out there just to make friends, but with an ulterior motive to make a ‘business friend.’ Don’t get engaged in a conversation which has nothing to do with business, because that means missing out on a bunch of other people that might want to know about your business. You need a ‘sniper-like’ approach where your plan is to make friends, but with a motive. You’re not there just to make friends and hope they’d ask you what you do and come. You’re there to generate enough interest in what you do from everyone you talk to that they might want to bring a friend to your business.

Get as many contacts as possible. You got to stay on point that you’re there to do business. The point is, don’t get into ‘pitch mode.’ You want to create the curiosity of what you do and then leave it alone. Go on to the next person, unless they engage you. And even if they engage you, be mindful how long you engage with that person. Remember, you only got an hour of networking in that event. Do you really want to get into a fifteen-minute pitch to one guy that probably isn’t going to buy from you anyways? Or do you want to make half the room know who you are and what you do so they can bring you people?

Business Cards or No Business Cards?

Now to the question, “Business cards, or no business cards?” There’s a couple different camps on that, and they seem to be getting more and more divided. I’ll preface this within my opinion. If you’re at a speed networking event, business cards are a must. You just can’t write down people’s information or connect with them in a meaningful way fast enough if you have eight people sharing their 30-second story with each other before moving on to the next table and doing it again.  It depends on what kind of a networking event you’re at.

I’m still of the camp that having a business card is helpful. But, of course, we at Small Business Dream also understood that a lot of Millennials aren’t so much thinking the same way, and there’s lots of cases where we just plain ran out. So, we actually created the Small Business Button.

“The Button”

small business dream

The Button is a free app which you can online from your appropriate store. Here’s how to use the Button app:

Let’s say you meet somebody at a networking event. You could say to him, “Hi Dennis. Good to meet you,” and simply ask his number. Type his name in the app and say, “Push the button,” (it will make a cool sound). It will auto-populate a pre-formatted message which then goes to your text messaging platform. Push the ‘send text’ and it sends that text message.  You can get it free if you go to It will automatically take you from your mobile device to your appropriate store to download the free Button app.

What’s really good about the Button app is it’s tactile. It also makes an impression (you can even change the button top to be your company instead of our company). It can be a bit of a conversation piece. People love it, they share it with others—it’s a really cool way when you don’t have business cards, or you just want to do something different that makes people remember you.

Just remember to always make them push the button; don’t do it for them. Show the phone and say, “Push the button.” Next time around, they’ll remember you as “The Button Guy.” It creates a memorable ‘hook’ to remind people of you.

Get Down to Your Data—Fast!

small business dream

Another thing that happens in networking events is people will often end up with a stack—great big stack—of business cards. You go home, and they go on to your desk beside your computer. That was a Monday event. Tuesday, they move a little further away, and then Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and then finally into the circular filing cabinet—that’s the garbage—because they’re no good by now.

The worst part is, that’s your ‘gold.’ That’s the data you work hard with. So, what you really need to be doing if you’re going to be at business networking events, is have a proper introduction email and take the time to send it. And, of course, nobody has the time to send 30 emails. So, get yourself some sort of a system.

We recommend as your sales and marketing automation solution. Get some kind of automation where you can, in our case, take a picture of the card, enter some details about who they are, it goes to a live transcriber, it comes back, it triggers your email, they can be entered into a series, and all these kinds of cool stuff. Have something that collects that data and sends them a welcome email.

Don’t blast them with everything you do. You’re not there to sell them; you’re there to make a connection. The easiest way to connection is say, “Hey, nice meeting you at that event. Do you know any other cool events that are coming up?” Just ask some information. Create that relationship. Don’t immediately go into, “I’m Dennis, and I saw this, and I saw that, yada yada yada.” That’s what the people that do it wrong do, and that doesn’t actually further your relationships. That will actually make them avoid you at the next networking event you go to. You’ll actually see them, sort of, staying as far out of your orbit as possible when you do that. So don’t do it wrong; do it right.

Final Thoughts

So, let’s wrap up with everything we’ve learned thus far.”Dress for success,” look good, make sure that you’re connecting with as many people as possible. Make your 40-second elevator pitch down. Get your words down—what to say, who your ideal client is, what you do.

The worst thing you can say is, “Oh, I’m a financial planner.” You watch, like Moses parting the Red Sea. People will not come near you. And that’s only because they know what comes next. But if instead you said something as simple as, “You know what? I’m a financial planner and I focus on people in the IT community that run companies between one and four million dollars. Do you know anyone that might need my help?”

Everyone who knows somebody like that is likely to refer them to you because now you’re interesting. Now you have a specialized expertise that the other financial planners in the room don’t have. So, don’t think, “The broader you make it, the more people you will get,” because your target isn’t the people in the room. Your target is some people they know who decide that you’re interesting and specific enough to bring someone to you.

There’s a cool little trick we want to share with you using LinkedIn which is a hybrid of online and person-to-person, face to face networking. If you get access to the microphone, or you get to stand up and you get to say who you are, what you’re doing, you can get access to ‘controlling the crowd,’ so to speak, Craig’s little LinkedIn trick is pretty cool—cool enough that we should save that for our next blog.

So once again, consistency, pre-plan it and continue to go and grow your business. Make more people, make it a goal. Before you head out to your networking event, have a goal in mind. “I’m going to meet five people, ten people, whatever that number is. Go for big number, and that’ll keep your introductions short. You want to make sure you listen to them twice as much as you talk. So, if you have two minutes of things to say, find a way to get them to speak for four minutes.

Look in the mirror before you leave. Make sure you’re dressed for success. You want to be approachable (do not wear excess perfume or cologne). Be respectful. Try to help people. The best way is give people tips. Help them with things you can help them with. Offer advice, offer suggestions, do things that are good for them instead of trying to sell them. Stop trying to sell people on the first time you meet them.

Client Building Strategies for Tech-Savvy Event Planners

small business dream

Finding new clients is one of the biggest challenges for many novice event planners. Aside from having a relatively thin portfolio, they also have to market themselves in a very competitive space. This is also true even among experienced planners, particularly those who have not adapted to modern technology. But for many tech-savvy event planners, there’s no limit as to the number of new clients they can generate using sales and marketing automation and building an online presence.

We’ll go through some of the ways you can grow your clientele much faster by adopting a technology-driven approach to building your events business.

Combining Web Presence and Automation

small business dream

Event planning websites are a game changer in the events industry. Clients can quickly make decisions based on the information found on your website – events you specialize in, services, price range, hourly rates, event planning packages, and so on. You can also schedule a call or meet-up with your prospects any time of the day through your website.

Phone calls are pretty much a part of the business, even in this digital age. But by using sales and marketing automation, you’ll only have to deal with prospects who’ve been through your website after providing you with a little bit of information. Let’s take Small Business Dream as an example.

Say you have a visitor who had gone through your event planner landing page and you want to be able to categorize your prospective client according to event, budget, and tentative dates. Typically, you’re going to need a separate service for your questionnaires and emails. However, Small Business Dream is a complete system that comes with its own survey builder and email autoresponder to automate a number of tasks for you.

For instance, you can set your questionnaire to segment your visitors according to their chosen events and set a priority for each one based on their tentative dates and budget. This becomes especially important when you’re dealing with multiple clients. You don’t want spending a lot of your time on a low-budget client who is months away from the scheduled event if you have a high-end prospect who has an upcoming event in two weeks.

Small Business Dream simplifies the task by prioritizing each contact to make sure you don’t miss out on a big break or big opportunities to grow your business.

Building Your Credibility Online

small business dream

Event planners spend hundreds of hours crafting the best experience for their clients. They understand the value of establishing a good name – not only to impress their clients but to turn each one into brand advocates. Customer referrals and word of mouth advertising still rank as some of the most cost-effective marketing tool to this day.

Experienced planners usually have the advantage over new ones when it comes to credibility. But there are workarounds for those who are still struggling to grow their client base. People are now moving towards online search and social media, so it only makes sense that we spend more time building traffic to our site and be able to network with other businesses.

small business dream

First, you need a stunning website to showcase your previous work. If you don’t have a large portfolio and want to attract more clients, you can make your own templates by taking photos of your mockups in your front yard or lawn. Play with different angles and lighting conditions. You might also want to invest in a professional high-definition camera or take short online courses in photography and photo-editing software (preferably, you have someone on your team who can handle this task).

Next, connect with other businesses through LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. Small Business Dream’s social connect allows you to find potential partners for your event planning business such as hotels and accommodation, resorts, catering services, florists, and ticketing services like Eventbrite. Network-building will help grow your business much faster than trying to do it on your own, especially if you need a little boost from long-established companies.

Adopting a Mobile Marketing Strategy for Your Business

small business dream

Mobile marketing has shown a lot of promise for many businesses, thanks to the rapid growth of mobile users in the past few years. Business directories and mobile apps such as Small Business Dream business finder app enable small businesses to become more searchable. The likelihood of having new clients increases as more people download and use the app. We’ve figured out a way to encourage mobile users around the area to come to you after downloading our business finder app.

Aside from getting more eyeballs, it can also help establish your credibility for being top of the line in terms of aesthetics and quality service. Clients can rate their experiences with you as their event planner and help attract other users who might need your expertise. And finally, you can make use of Google and Apple’s push notification service to send messages on your clients’ phone screens in real-time. For instance, you can notify your prospect about your scheduled call or meet-up and ask for confirmation.


Finding new clients is a lot easier these days through sales and marketing automation. Small Business Dream can save event planners hundreds of hours for more productive and creative endeavors by doing most of the heavy liftingfor them. Learn more on how to get more clients at and become a tech-savvy event planner today.

Keys to a Successful Dental Practice in this Digital Age

small business dream

Are you spending a lot on traditional advertising to promote your dental practice only to find you’re constantly having too much empty space in your calendar? Did you know there’s a much better way that would enable you to grow your dental practice faster? Believe it or not, you can grow a successful dental practice that can earn you twice or even three times your current income by adopting a more tech-savvy approach to market yourself.

How a Dental Practice Turned into a Multi-million Dollar Business

small business dream

Dr. Williams is a pillar in the community and one of Atlanta’s most sought-after practitioner, management coach and marketing guru in the dental industry. In one of his interviews, he revealed some valuable insights into the dental practice – how he grew from running a well-paying dental practice to building a five million dollar business.

He started out just like any other dentist. As time went by, his practice grew and became one of the best in providing care and quality service to people in the community. At that time he was averaging one and a half million dollars per year. But it wasn’t until he decided to move and start over that he saw his income grow by more than double.

His secret? Making his presence felt and taking an online approach to marketing. His website took off at the height of internet adoption in the late 90s and he became known to people as the tech-savvy dental practitioner in the area. It enabled him to expand his reach and quickly grow his client base, basically from scratch.

One proven technique he used which gave him 150 new patients per month was to build a sales funnel. Ninety percent of people who came to his practice became regular clients. It was effective because it allowed people to get to know him even before they met him. We’ll get into the specifics of funnel-building later in this article using Small Business Dream sales and marketing automation software.

Sales and marketing automation coupled with email, social media, and content marketing helped grow his dental practice from zero to five million dollars per year, much quicker than using the old school methods of traditional advertising. You too can become greatly successful by adopting a modern approach to promoting yourself and your dental practice.

Here are the keys to building a successful dental practice in this digital age.

Become a Perpetual Learner

small business dream

Dr. Williams describes what he called “alpha dentist” as someone who’s eager to learn more and has that inner drive to be the best. A well-rounded dentist equips himself with all the necessary skills to become a competent hygienist, general dentist, pediatric dentist, orthodontist, prosthodontist, periodontist, and endodontist.

Learning these skills takes time and a lot of patience. But by being more versatile, as opposed to just doing basic dentistry, you’ll be serving a much broader audience and hence,bigger income for your dental practice.

Being a perpetual learner also means acquiring managerial and marketing skills necessary for scaling up, e.g. setting up additional operatories, hiring more staff, acquiring new customers, and so on. This includes creating systems (working on the business), and becoming a tech-savvy dental practitioner. Having these skill sets helps build your reputation as an expert on the subject and bring your dental practice closer to the community.

Grow Your Audience Online

small business dream

Having a blog or website for your dental practice will set you apart from all other dentists who don’t have an online presence. People nowadays spend most of their time on the internet and social media. When they need a root canal, tooth alignment, or high quality veneer, they search the web for answers.

It also increases your credibility. People can see your track record online such as special trainings, before and after photos, and be able to find useful information about oral and dental health.

You can use your spare time setting up a website or blog, especially during slow months. People who are new to web design can benefit from sales and marketing automation software that comes with its own web editor like Small Business Dream. Choose a template specific to your industry and customize it to your heart’s content. However, if you don’t have much time for it, you can reach them and have it set up for you.

Promote Your Practice through Automation

small business dream

Sales funnels and autoresponders is a big thing in the business world right now. They can be used in so many ways and in many different situations. For instance, you can use sales funnels to lead your visitors into your practice after signing up on your mailing list. For best results, we recommend that you have a website and/or micro-site, and a landing page.

Small Business Dream allows you to build your own funnel and automate certain actions based on a given response from one stage to the other. In your Introduction page for example, you can have them choose between getting more information on maintaining oral and dental health, and availing of your dental services. One of those responses can either build traffic for your site or lead to an immediate sale.

Autoresponders helps keep in touch with your clients, particularly on procedures requiring follow up such as root canal or tooth alignment. For instance, you can set up an email autoresponder to remind them about their schedule a day before the appointment and ask for confirmation. You can book your clients who answered “yes” ahead of time. This makes them feel important and cared for. You can do the same for other clients who only want checkups once every six months. Set up an autoresponder to remind them that they should have one already.

Establish Good Relationship with the Community

small business dream

You’ll grow your dental practice twice as fast if you become a pillar of the community. Reach out and network with other people in the community. Offer free dental checkups in schools or free dental services for athletic teams. Make your presence felt and get involved as much as possible. Take this as an opportunity to market your skills and your dental practice and set yourself as a valuable asset to the community.


The digital age opens up a world of opportunities for practitioners in the dental industry. The future of marketing is here. We offer a much better way so you won’t have to settle for expensive ads that doesn’t guarantee a return on your investments. Get more ideas on how you can use sales and marketing automation at Small Business Dream and start growing your dental practice like never before.

Creating a Digital Customer Experience for Your Small Business

small business dream

Digital customer experience (DCX) is a buzzword among tech businesses and online marketers. Oftentimes, we associate the phrase with online shopping and e-commerce websites like Amazon. Nowadays, it’s becoming more popular among traditional businesses to have a web presence and connect with potential customers.

Let’s look at how customer experience has evolved over the years, and later we’ll get into how business owners can modernize customer experience to meet the demands of digitally enabled customers.

Customer Experience Then and Now

Customer experience typically starts with a customer walking by and getting a sense of what’s inside our business. Does it look nice and tidy? Do store people greet customers by the entrance? What about the customer service? Does it make them feel comfortable, important, and cared for? It’s the overall perception about the business during the customer’s journey. A great customer experience can be the turning point from being just a casual buyer to a lifetime source of revenue for the company.

The influx of mobile technology and subsequent growth in mobile users takes customer experience to a whole new level. Innovation gave rise to digital customer experience as businesses take their brand into the virtual space and create a seamless experience for both digital and physical customer engagement.

Bookings for hotel and accommodation are a classic example. A good digital customer experience meant customers could easily find their hotels by price range, ratings, and location, and be able to book their stay and make frictionless transactions all within the app or website. Moreover, they should be able to redeem their points and make cashless transactions through the app on-site and in-store.

Small Business Dream is built around the concept of providing users with the best digital customer experience through its digital marketplace (business directory) which also doubles as a mobile wallet.

Digitizing the Customer Experience

Here’s some way you can create a digital customer experience for your small business.

1. Engage with customers on multiple channels

Multi-channel marketing has a lot of advantages compared to just one type of customer communication. Traditional advertising is pretty much a thing of the past. Today, we need to grab people’s attention through social media, providing useful content (blogs, tutorials,etc.), and using top-of-mind strategies.

Your customers’ journey begins when they pause at your catchy post on Facebook, watch your videos on YouTube, subscribe to your mailing list, or click your page on Google’s search engine results. Webhosting sites, content management systems (CMS), and sales and marketing automation enables small businesses to build an online presence much quicker and easier at a very reasonable cost. Small Business Dream sales and marketing automation provide business owners with a little bit of everything from micro-sites, landing pages, autoresponders, follow up series, Facebook and Twitter integration, and so on.

2. Focus more on inbound marketing

Inbound marketing is more likely to succeed in this day and age compared to outbound marketing particularly among millennials. According to survey it may take around 3 to 18 months from initial engagement before they come up with a decision. It’s a continuous process of educating, following up, and sustaining their interest all throughout the journey.

Outbound marketing still has its place, although they’re still pretty much “hit-and-miss” even on the web. How many times did you have to skip a YouTube ad or got distracted by a Google ad because it failed to reach its intended audience? We call this “interruption” marketing. On the other hand, inbound marketing pulls people in (not push) by giving them exactly what they want, when they want it, and how.

One of the most commonly used methods include content marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), as well as using customer relationship management (CRM), and sales and marketing automation tools. Say, you want your potential customers to receive updates specific to their own interests. Small Business Dream’s survey builder will enable you to segment your contacts, as well as sales funnels to quickly assess their levels of interest.

3. Get your business listed on a mobile marketplace

Your small business needs to be searchable. You can work on improving your Google search ranking through SEO. But if you want a faster way without having to wait for months or years to rank, business directories is the way to go. Unlike Google, you’ll have better chances being listed on business directories like Small Business Dream Business Finder app as it allows users to find your business through local searches instead of getting buried underneath in Google search results.

Mobile marketplace appeals to mobile users and digitally enabled customers who want fast and easy way to find businesses around the city. They also help in making buying decisions based on ratings and comments from customers, creating a much better digital customer experience for app users. It can also take advantage of Google or Apple’s push notification service which would allow you to have direct access to your mobile users’ phone screens.

With Small Business Dream, you can have your business listed in the Business Finder app or be able to send push notifications to app users as a Small Business Dream sales and marketing automation software subscriber.


Creating a digital customer experience is more than ever within reach for many small businesses. With better technologies in sales and marketing automation and more people getting access to mobile services, we can bring our businesses closer to people and level the playing field for everyone. You can take your first step by visiting Small Business Dream and learn how you can create a digital customer experience for your small business.