Knowing the Community

You are in business for yourself, but how well do you know your customers and community? A good way to become better at understanding your community is to develop spread sheet databases of service clubs in your town with contact names, phone numbers, email addresses and brief descriptions. You should know all of the Volunteer Support / Service Clubs in your town. You will find sample letters in your Microsoft Word and Excel programs to make your job of creating these databases quite easy. You'll also find a list of service clubs at your local chamber of commerce and you can build your database from there. You will also find information in the newspaper under; what is happening events with contact names and sources. The file you create should be labeled Service Clubs Data Base and contain contact information for clubs such as:

Kiwanis

Optimists

Soroptimists

Elks

Lions Club

Rotary

This database will prove to be quite useful to you. These clubs help the community, other clubs and groups in your area. You should also create standard letters in Microsoft Word that contain promotional silent auction coupons and gift certificate or fundraising idea proposals which involve your company. It is advisable to mail a proposal to all clubs in your area alerting them of your desire to work with them on gift certificates and events. Introduce yourself and attend meetings of service clubs. Go to two meetings. At the second, bring two additional potential members with you. All service clubs try to increase their membership. Since they are also social clubs, many times increasing membership is more important than helping. Even if you don't join, you can make a lot of friends by securing membership or brining in others. This is smart networking and shows your commitment to the community. It's always good to name drop too and most of the city's movers and shakers are involved in these groups. You should attend all prominent clubs before making a decision and join only one. Keep open tabs on all clubs and become a resource in case they need something. Think about the community and your place in it. As a small business person you owe it to yourself to participate and become part of the ownership society which builds community spirit and strengthens your business. Think about it.

"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs

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