How To Snatch The Golden COIN!


COIN – Circle Of Influence Networking.

On a regular basis, I am on the look out for new opportunities for companies and individuals within my circle of influence. Whether they are located within my immediate market, across the continent or around the world, I am keeping their best interests in mind. As you might imagine, I speak with CEO’s from many different types of companies all the time. If for instance, I speak with a manufacturer, I immediately curious as to who supplies their pallets or wood packaging? I have a client contact who does that. What about corrugated packaging? Looking to tie the knot, perhaps it would benefit you to speak with Atlanta’s ONLY Intimate Bridal Salon? No matter what the situation, I love the idea of my clients doing business together.

I subscribe to a service that looks for news sources. Whenever I spot a topic that a reporter is looking to research and one of my clients would fit the bill, then I pass it on. I consider these efforts part of my overall marketing strategy. One thing that it helps to spur is additional business. It keeps me on their radar. We are referring each other. Much of my new business is from referral. I see it as a two-way street.

Don’t forget that branding is all about the relationship. Take a look at your typical week. I’ll bet that you too trip over situations where your customers could benefit. Take for instance a retailer – if you’re smart and you’re building a customer database, find out what they do. Imagine if you were able to link them up with an opportunity? How golden would you be to them?

If you send out a monthly html newsletter to your list, feature a customer. It’s the little things that make a huge impact. When you’re in their company, pay close attention to what they’re saying about their daily lives. An irritant might possibly be addressed by someone within your circle of influence. What you will definitely find happening as a result of this, is that your customers will start looking out for you.

None of us are any different – we are all looking for new business. Ask your customers what they’re looking for?

Make COIN pay off for you!


  1. Great reminder, Ed. Connecting your customers is just one of those things that needs to be part of who you are, what you do. Like any habit, it might have to start with a daily reminder on your calendar, but eventually, it become second nature. People will begin to add “connector” to your brand!


  2. I think we’d be surprised Mark, how many business people don’t even consider this. Narcissistic attitudes it costing them more than they realize.

    Thank you for your comment.

  3. Wonderful advice!

  4. Thanks Janelle.

  5. This article reminds me of a new browser plugin in beta.

    I was fortunate enough to get into the beta program of – While you browse the internet, it suggests contacts of yours who might benefit from what you’re reading. When it identifies who is interested, you can send them the link along with a short note.

    It’s tag based, so it can take a while to setup but it’s worth a look. More practical solutions for this are surely right around the corner…

  6. Robert,

    I love that it pops up and suggests a contact who may be interested. Very cool. I’m doing exactly that on a manual (thus limited) basis. The set-up is daunting though. I would use it for very specific clients to start. I’m keeping my eye on this one – THANKS.

  7. Ed:

    Expanding upon your comment about narcissistic attitudes…I think that kind of attitude drips down through many organizations. Often, the leader fails to understand the organization’s brand from any point of view other than their own….i.e., if they come out of sales, they think everything revolves around sales. From engineering, then everything depends on the engineering. Even those from marketing often fall victim to the idea that all it takes is marketing.

    That’s why I like branding as a foundation…if you believe that brand is the sum of the experience a customer has, then every part of the organization is important. Doing anything else, in my opinion, is an expensive way to do business.

    And that tool is a great way to force us away from that kind of thinking. I can’t wait to see if they invite me to the beta!


  8. Mark, I applied for the (zentact) beta as well. I’m anxious to see how it works.

    Thanks to people like you and others in the branding industry, we can help savy business owners benefit from a truly focused brand perspective. Here at Small Business Branding, there is always a good discussion and plenty of tips to help subscribers adopt profitable branding practices.

    I love the name of your blog, “Brand Happens, so what are you going to do about it?” by the way. It speaks to a common remark by CEO’s that don’t get it. They believe a brand is something you buy, (or not). These people are the followers.

    Thanks for your opinion Mark.

  9. Sites like Twitter are also great for matching contacts like this. I frequently see people either offering something or looking for something, and once or twice I’ve been able to put people in touch with each other.

  10. Good tip John. I’m still trying to gage the value of twitter, this helps.

  11. hi Ed,
    This is a good reminder about the importance of networking, and also about always keeping your eyes open for opportunities for yourself and for your business friends. Thanks.
    ~ Steve from Pinnacle Trade Show Displays
    PS. I love what you did with the two pennies, though Abe might disagree with me!
    PPS. If you don’t mind me asking, how where your watercolor sales over Christmas?

  12. Watercolor sales weren’t too bad Steve, although my new larger format watercolors didn’t move. I’m compiling articles for my NEW large format blog – so that I can open with something for subscribers to read. We’ll see if there are any lovers of art out there.

  13. hi Ed,
    I was very impressed by what I saw on your website, and wish you much success with the Big Ass end of it! ~ Steve, Pinnacle Trade Show Displays
    PS. I just checked your blog and you have a typo in your first sentence (mater) on the post My Quiet Inspiration. 🙂
    PPS. I find I get some of my best work done early in the morning too!

  14. Thanks Steve, I just fixed it. No mater 🙂 how many times you proof something, late night writing is pretty scary the next day.

    I’m anxious to start getting the site out there among other art blogs to see what the reaction is to the name.

  15. Lorne,

    All I have to do now is start my own country.