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Like many London calling readers, part of my role involves business development where you are trying to drum up new business from people you have not yet met.

I remember my first “sales” call back in 2001 when I had just taken the position of CEO of PropertyLook, an online commercial property marketplace.

Having held technical, marketing and client side business development roles until this point, I had never needed to make a “sales call” to someone I had never met – the cold call.

Needless to say, my 1st cold call was not so bad, so I followed it with another and thousands of calls later, I find myself wanting to help others with their business development activities using social media.

One of the softest ways to introduce yourself to a new prospect is via what I am coining the “eTap”, where you sensitively use LinkedIn and Twitter to provide a very gentle “tap on the shoulder” to say hello.

This should lead to a warmer reception when you do email or call them, as they will know that you exist, and have some expectation of a contact request in the not-too-distant future.

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