Making every meeting count…

Marketing Campaigns | Chigwell | Essex | The Sowerby Group

So there I was on a Saturday morning having my nails done in Chigwell, Essex. As per the usual, the conversation starts:

Manicurist: ‘OK, colour chosen. How are you and how’s work?”

Me: “All good thanks and very busy.”

Manicurist: “Oh that’s good.”

Me: ”It’s manic in the Sowerby agency at the moment – with a completely different landscape of work coming through.”

Manicurist replies “What kind of work?”

Me: “Well, we are running 4 different Marketing Campaigns for Essex County Council, we are designing and developing a few interesting websites, some new branding work and then of course I have my recruitment and search business.”

Manicurist: “Wow, makes my job sound quite boring.”

At that point I get into a conversation with the lady who was sitting next to me, also having her nails done.

Nail client: “Hi, I couldn’t help but overhear your conversation about Marketing and Branding.”

Me: “Hi. Yes I have run my own full service advertising and marketing agency for nearly 27 years. It’s called The Sowerby Group.”

Me: “What do you do for a living?”

Nail client: “I am the Marketing & Brand Manager for the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).”

Me: “No way! I have been the RIBA’s Senior Account Director for the last 17 years.”

Nail client: “Gosh, I don’t believe this. Here we are, having a chat whilst getting our nails done, and it turns out we have a client/agency relationship. Do you have a business card?”

Me: “Yes, I just happen to have one or two in my purse.” (using my cheeky grin face).

Nail client: “Could I have one please as I am sure we will be able to put some business your way.“

Me: “No problem, we have an internal creative design studio as well as a digital design team and we already work with RIBA’s HR Team.”

Nail client: “Great, I’ll be in touch soon. In the meantime shall we connect on LinkedIn?”

Me: “Absolutely! What a coincidence!”

Moral of the story is:

  • Wherever you are, always take your business cards with you (you never know when you might need one – even a curled up one at the bottom of your bag!)
  • Never have a conversation with your manicurist/hairdresser/barber and disrespect another organisation (you never know who you are sitting next to…)
  • If someone engages in conversation, ask them what they do, where they work and find some ground….as sure as hell I have a brand new contact within an organisation where my agency name is already known through the HR team, but to get an invite into other parts of the business is a dream.”

Ps. You couldn’t make it up!