This week I worked on my presentation for the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center’s Fast Track Entrepreneurial Program. Working on my presentation inspired me to talk about the importance of adding volunteering to your business/marketing plan. Actually giving your time and energy to a program that resonates with you is important for your professional and personal development. Below are a few of the benefits that come from volunteering in your business and personal life.
Build a Professional Network
One way to build your online business is by giving your time in joint ventures. Align yourself with others that are in the same industry or in your niche market by collaborating in teleseminars, webinars or creating products that will serve both markets. Another way to build your network is to volunteer in your industry’s professional organizations. Giving your time is a great way to learn from veterans, keep up with the latest changes in your industry, and network with colleagues.
Cultivate Relationships with Prospects
An online business requires more effort to make human connections. Telling people what’s important to you by showing where you spend your time is one way to create a human link. Subscribers to your list will pay more attention to your emails and blog posts if you have a shared interest. Posting your volunteer plans and pictures from events on your social networking profiles will catch the attention of like-minded individuals and serve as an online introduction that could lead to a new subscriber or alliances.
Teleseminars, webinars, online courses, and video conferences make it easy to create a virtual world. Volunteering creates an environment for in-person interaction with others. Some online business owners have great online communication skills but are reserved when it comes to in-person contact. Spending time with people that share your interest enables online professionals to have a relaxed conversation about something that is important to them. It helps you step away from your work and realigns your perspective of what is important to you.
In other words giving to benefit others helps business owners find harmony in their lives. Sharing your energy, talents and time also benefits your business with gratitude; it helps create good synergy. When you freely invest in the highest good of others the unseen meets your intentions and increases your business when you least expect it from unknown sources.
My suggestion for you is to add volunteering to your business/marketing plan. As you build your business, give regularly. It’s good for your community, it’s good for you as a human being, and it’s good for your business.