As parking station fees and petrol prices continue to rise, home-based business mums feel the crunch. Staying connected to prospects and clients without the high costs of traveling for meetings can be challenging. Nearly one million home-based businesses are run in Australia. With a percentage of Australian businesses being managed by busy mums amidst economically struggling markets, tele-coffees have come to the rescue.
Mums who run their business from home can improve operations, reduce overheads and secure at-home business equipment by adopting accounting software such as QuickBooks and updating Budget Direct home and contents insurance. If you’re a working mum, not only will you want overhead reductions and home security, but you’ll want to focus on expanding your business and brand through efficient communication.
Tele-Coffees Help Build Businesses
Tele-coffees serve as a great way to connect with a client or prospect by phone or Skype at a dedicated time. During a tele-coffee conference, you can coordinate a specific agenda and shared outcomes. Think of these calls as a friendly follow-up tool to touch base with people after an industry networking event or when you want to reconnect with past colleagues. Let’s look at how tele-coffees can be applied and enhance your home-based business. Keep in mind tele-coffees are business-focused. Avoid using virtual coffee meetings for personal or social purposes.
Make a list of the people whom you want to connect with and then reach out to them by suggesting a tele-coffee.
Follow these tips if you communicate through email:
- If you have met the person socially or in a business context within the last month, email is a simple tool for following up. Make sure your email header is direct. For example, send an email with the subject line: “reconnecting for potential tele-coffee.”
- Remind your connection where you met them. You can emulate the following message: “We met at the Chamber of Commerce lunch earlier this month and chatted about school uniforms. Thank you. Your tips were very helpful.”
- Include the reason for scheduling the tele-coffee call and explain what the other party can expect. A tele-coffee is scheduled catch-up for coffee or tea and neither party has to leave the office. They are a great time-management tool. Once we have pre-arranged the time and length of call—let’s aim for 10 – 15 minutes maximum—we can email a couple of points we would like to discuss.
- Remember to include detailed contact information and two time blocks that are convenient, e.g. Tuesday or Wednesday between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- Provide options. For example, “If this is not convenient for your schedule at this time, is it okay if I reconnect with you next month?”
- Set up a tele-coffee folder in your inbox and include a sub-folder named potential tele-coffees.
The more familiar you become with this business system, the better your results will be. Before long you will be able to start tracking how much business has come directly from your tele-coffee calls.
This is a guest post by Juan Vasquez. As a CPA, Juan loves discussing how to get out of debt and meet your financial goals. He also helps small businesses get off the ground and grow.