7 Tips for Effective Networking
Networking, connecting online and offline is critical to the success of your business. People buy from people and attending events is one of THE best ways to meet your ideal clients and suppliers. Networking opens up so many doors, you never know who you might meet.
I work with many clients to help boost their confidence when networking, so I thought I’d share some top tips for you today to make your networking work smarter.
Whenever you’re out at an event, do you make the first move and go up to people to introduce yourself? or do you wait for people to come to you? Either way is right! Whatever works best for you. The events need both.
Here are my 7 Top Tips to help you Make Your Networking More Effective:
1. Research the different events to see which environment suits you. There are many different events, usually centred around food and drink! For example, BNI starts their events at 6.45am with breakfast included, and the meeting finishes by 8.30am. If you prefer a lunch event, check out Urbano who have many different events throughout the month, or my elegant dining facilitated lunch, Contacts and Cuisine. If you prefer an evening event, over a couple of cocktails, Contacts and Cocktails is THE place to be. Both facilitated events, so you can relax while I make all the introductions, so everyone gets to know you and your expertise. Contacts are shared, it works a treat. So, have a look and see which event you prefer.
2. Listen well to the person in front of you and maintain good eye contact. Just relax and listen. Ask a few questions about how they started their business and who they generally work with. Find out who would be a good contact for them?
If you’re nervous or feeling shy, then by focusing on the person in front of you and really listening to what they are saying will help you to forget about yourself! Your internal dialogue will soften as you focus on the person in front of you and listen to them instead. And if you see someone else looking like they’d rather run out the door, then go and talk to them! They’ll be so pleased you did and it will boost your confidence in return.
3. Have a couple of examples ready of recent work that you’ve completed for clients. Tell the story of why they came to you in the first place, what problem you solved, and importantly, how you helped them and the benefits they gained from working with you.
4. Be happy! Put yourself in a good frame of mind before you go in and you’ll find the event is more pleasurable 🙂 Just relax and smile and you’ll enjoy the event much more.
5. Prepare a memorable introduction for when people ask you ‘What do you do?’ Don’t just tell them your job title, be different. The person in front of you needs to know how you help your clients. I help my guests at my events with this and give them on the spot coaching to improve their introduction.
6. Connect with people you meet and add them to your online networking platforms – LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook.
7. The secret is in the ‘Follow Up’. Follow up with people and send them whatever you promised them and make the connections if you said you would. You will stand out from the crowd and see more results from your networking if you follow up more 🙂
To your success and happiness, happy networking!
Jo James xx
P.S. Following up is most people’s sticking point – find out how to do this congruently and consistently to propel your business to the next level in my new book, Make Your Mondays Matter. Have a look here for more info.
Please contact me if you have any questions about your business.
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