Making the Most of Your Networking Activities

One of the best ways of growing your business as a business owner is to network with like-minded people. Wherever you are in the country there are many networking clubs or groups and you will be faced with a decision as to which one(s) are the best to join. If you have had a mind to it would be quite possible to spend all of your time in network meetings and not actually do any work! I would suggest attending a number as a guest initially (they are all happy for you to do this) and then joining those that best suit your requirements.

So, what exactly is networking? Networking can be defined as ‘The interaction with other people to exchange information and to develop professional or personal contacts’  

 Making the Most of Your Networking Activities

To obtain maximum benefit from attending networking events you need to follow a simple formula:

Making the Most of Your Networking Activities

Networking Are you making the most of it?

  • Hone and practice your elevator pitch for which you usually have one minute to explain what your company does. Describe your USP’s and be clear on the types of businesses you are looking to be introduced to. This should be presented in a relaxed and natural manner. Do not read from a script.
  • Take lots of business cards with you. There will be plenty of opportunities to hand these out and to collect business cards from everyone else attending.
  • Book follow up meetings with companies. Not just those who could become your customers but also with those who could become referral partners.
  • Make further contact after the event.Send an email after the meeting to all of your new contacts saying how pleased you were to meet them. Offer the opportunity of a ‘one to one’ meeting.
  • Connect with them on Social Media. Invite them to like your Facebook page, follow them on Twitter or connect with them on Linkedin.
  • Go againNetworking is about building relationships. If you attend regularly you are much more likely to translate these new contacts into people you can build enduring long-term relationships with.

Making the Most of Your Networking Activities

If you are asked to present your own company at a Networking event then do not turn down this opportunity. It is your chance to promote your business and to excel as an expert in your field.

Remember: Not everyone that you meet at a networking event will be a potential customer. However, anyone could know someone who could benefit from the services of your company and could be happy to recommend or refer you to them. By the same token you could, of course, introduce new business to them.

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