Chris Holman, the Prospecting Professor, posted a great item last week about The Interesting People Dinner, a brilliant marketing strategy devised by a Minneapolis law firm. The firm used some very creative and slightly theatrical methods to invite a select group of "interesting people" to a dinner, with the express purpose of helping them connect with each other. It was all about the guests; in fact, no attorneys from the firm even attended, although all attendees knew who their hosts were.
This type of event is something an advisor could easily adapt, which is of course why Chris posted it. Financial advisor Cella Quinn of Omaha pioneered a different but equally successful dinner party concept of her own a few years ago. Her goal: help C-level women executives connect with each other.
Cella took a mental inventory of the biggest companies and institutions in Omaha. She then composed a list of the highest-profile women who worked in these organizations. "They had to be top decision makers at companies, universities, hospitals, or nonprofit organizations," she says, adding that only 10% were current clients. Then she brought the women together over dinner at her favorite country club (30 of 32 accepted the invitation) and helped them get to know each other.
The evening was such a smash, the women decided to do it again… and again… and again. They've been meeting every month for five years now (and the members all pay their own way). For an initial investment of $1,000 and some time, Cella Quinn has brought in 17 new accounts, five of which are worth more than a million dollars. But she didn't do it for business, Cella says. "I reached out to them as friends." Get the details of how she put together that first dinner in Nicole Coulter's case study, "Create Your Own Elite Dinner Club" (free registration required).
Something like this doesn't have to be a women-only event. The only key point is that the guest list must be exclusive, because that is the draw for successful people. In that regard, Quinn's "10 Club" sounds a lot like the Interesting People dinner party. Both show the power of facilitating valuable connections among important or influential people. And both are designed expressly for social purposes—no sales pitches or marketing allowed.
Which makes sense. When you're the mastermind who's helping others create abundance (free registration required) in their lives, there's no need to talk about yourself, because your actions and initiative speak volumes. The clients will flock to you. Referrals won't be far behind. And you'll have a blast in the meantime.
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