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January 15, 2013 | By Barry Moltz

Does “In Person” really matter anymore?

Some business people say that we don’t need face to face meetings any longer. They tell me that email, phone calls, social media¬†and video are just effective.

Bah-Hum Bug!

In my mind, there is nothing in the business world that can replace an in person meeting. Social media, email and video phone calls are a good way to start a relationship or continue one, but only an in person meeting will soldify it. That is why I frequently jump on airplanes to build by business. People don’t really get to know you until you have sat in a room or shared a meal with them.

You will learn alot more about your customer in person. You will see where they work and who they interact with. Personal insights can be retrieved from social media, but business insights live in their office.

People do business with who they know like and trust….and that means seeing them in person. This can be your competitive edge.

7 Responses to “Does “In Person” really matter anymore?”

  1. Absolutely SPOT ON, Barry. Saw first-hand how in-person meetings matter. Met with a client yesterday for what I thought was just a brainstorming session. The outcome: He’s asked me for proposals on two additional projects and asked me to meet other members of his team to get started. Also, he thanked ME for meeting at his office and taking time to think through ideas and review content. Definitely doing more of this in 2013!

  2. Marshall says:

    “In person” absolutely matters, but not as much as it used to. It really depends on the purpose of the meeting. I believe an introduction meeting is always better in person. But once you are familiar with someone, the time, effort, cost it may take to meet in person may not be worth the value of what you gain by meeting someone in person vs a phone call or video conference. If there is a lot at stake then it may be worth the time/cost for a face to face meeting. There is no technology that can replace the value of a handshake, live smile, and being able to look someone in the eyes. Because in person meetings are becoming rare these days – they are also becoming more valuable. When you get the opportunity, you have to make the most of it!

  3. Barry Moltz says:

    Great comments..thank you

  4. Gail Gardner says:

    It depends on the person. Some people absolutely insist on in person meetings and refuse to do business unless you will travel to where they are.

    Other people – like me – have no need to ever meet in person. I prefer to only work with the most brilliant people in ever specialty and the odds of them ever being in the same place are slim and none. I can tell more about them online than most can tell by meeting in person.

  5. Barry Moltz says:

    Agreed- one of the tricks is to find the right communication for the right person

  6. Julie says:

    I agree with you Barry and I think this is aptly demonstrated in my own Industry. I work in the fitness sector where ‘in-person’ is still highly valued and very much the ‘norm’. Let’s consider how unusual it would be to join a gym without first going there, meeting with the membership consultant and touring the facility in person. Would most of us do business with any gym that simply offered us details over the phone and emailed us some photos of the place? Highly unlikely.

    Okay so this may seem a silly example, but it proves a point. The importance of ‘in person’ meetings to build trust and relationships with customers varies across Industry sectors. Equally customers’ own perceptions of the importance of ‘in-person’ relations will vary across different sectors. What would be considered customary in one sector may seem quite unorthodox in another. Understanding your Industry and your prospective customers’ needs may give you the greatest insight into the importance of in-person relations.

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