Over the past few months, Evernote has become my BFF. I seriously LOVE it. It’s amazingly versatile. And it is incredible when it comes to building and keeping track of relationships with other professionals. Why waste money on another Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool when you can use Evernote at every step of the process, from meeting people for the first time, to keeping track of what you talk about over time, to following up? Wondering how? Read on.
Set It Up
Before you use Evernote as a powerful relationship management tool, you’ll have to do a tiny bit of set up.
1. Create a new notebook to keep track of your contacts.
2. Think of some tags you’d like to use to keep track of different people. You can start with their potential relationship to you, i.e. “Clients” “Referral Partners” “Collaborators” “Mentors,” etc. Then you can add another tag for their industry, or their position in the sales conversation, i.e. “Almost sold,” “New prospect,” etc. You’ll have to figure this out for yourself, because it should be specific to you and your business.
Watch the video below to learn more about using Evernote as a CRM tool:
Now you’re ready to get out there and start meeting people.
The first meeting
You meet someone at a meetup group and casually exchange business cards. What do you do next? Hope that you remember enough of your conversation later to send a personalized follow up? Put their business card in your wallet and then later take it out and put it on your desk with all of the other business cards you’ve collected?
With Evernote, you can do a few quick things that will not only help you remember more about the person you just met, but also take care of the business card buildup as well. Here’s what to do:
1. Pull out your smartphone, open the Evernote app, click “Picture,” choose the “Business Card” setting and take a quick snapshot of the person’s business card. This will create a note in Evernote with a photo of business card, and will pull information from the card such as their phone number, email address, and business name. If your new acquaintance is on LinkedIn, it will even ask you if you want to connect. How awesome is that?
Check out this quick tutorial to see how it’s done:
2. Change the note name from “Scanned Business card….” to the person’s first and last name.
3. Move it into your “Business Relationships” notebook. Add a tag if you wish.
4. In the same note, add a few notes about the person you just met. Does anything stand out from your conversation? Make sure to jot down some ideas so that you don’t forget later on. It’s really important to follow-up with personalized emails.
5. Hit the reminder button on the lower left of the screen to remind yourself the next day to follow up.
The Initial Follow Up
1. Check your Evernote reminders and make sure to follow-up the next day
2. Create a follow-up template note
Use Evernote to cut and paste a simple follow-up template that you can tweak to fit the specific email you’re writing. Just create a note called “Initial Follow-Up” and keep the template inside. Here’s one I wrote. Feel free to use it if you wish.
Dear (Person’s Name),
I really enjoyed meeting you yesterday at (place you met). It was great learning all about (their business) and how you help your clients (what they do for their clients). I especially liked learning about (something that sticks out from your conversation). I’d love to meet up again soon so that I can get to know more about you and your business. I am free on (2 times you are available to get together). Do either of those times work for you?
I’m looking forward to chatting soon.
3. Write the date of your follow-up email and set a new reminder to email again in a week if you don’t hear from them.
At Your Meeting
When you’re sitting across from your new business acquaintance at a coffee shop, the Evernote awesomeness doesn’t have to stop. Pull out your iPad or laptop, ask if the person would be okay with you taking notes, and then add to the initial note you created about them.
1. Create a divider line in your note (only available on a laptop)
2. Type “Initial Meeting” and the date
3. Press the record button so that you can record your conversation and refer to it later. Doing this will mean you don’t have to worry as much about writing notes.
Note: This will also work for a phone conversation, but I recommend using Skype to call them (it costs $3 in the U.S. for a monthly unlimited Skype-to-phone account). That way both of your voices will be easier for Evernote to hear.
Here’s a sample:
Ways I can help:
After the Meeting
Continue to use Evernote to follow-up, and remember to reset the note reminder to a specified date in the future each time you do, so you never forget to stay in touch.
You can also use shared notebooks to swap information back and forth if you do end up having a longer business relationship.
Get the PDF guide + Templates
I’ve put together an exclusive bonus, especially to go along with this post. It’s a PDF guide that you can download, save in Evernote, and use as a reference.
Just fill in the form below and the guide will be emailed to you right away.
Don’t have an Evernote account yet?
Check it out here.
Do you want to learn even more about how to use Evernote?
Check out Evernote Essentials by Brett Kelly, the definitive Evernote guide!