Today business is about liking, knowing, trusting – building relationships. It’s about becoming an Influencer in your area of expertise. All of this requires being known, being available, being seen. Networking provides the opportunity to do all of these. It’s vitally important to your message and your business.
Networking is not about how many business cards you have collected, or about who you know. It is about who knows you, and is willing to refer you and your business to their contacts.
So if you are going to Network why not be effective? Here are 10 tips to make your networking a success:
1 It’s not about sales – it’s about building relationships first – building the know, like and trust. Make connections and get to know your fellow networkers.
2 It’s not about who you know – it is about who knows you. Have you been clear in your message and with your introductions? Do your fellow networkers know who you are and the solutions you offer?
3 Be prepared and plan – research what meetings are best for you to attend, know what you want to achieve at the network meeting. Is it speaking to 2 new people, is it about having coffee meetings and developing relationships, is about information sharing. When you plan and prepare you will get the most out of your networking.
4 Have a good introduction to share – don’t sell. Highlight their pain and how you solve it; connect with them on an emotional level. Remember the power of storytelling – share your story and your clients’ stories.
5 Be concise and clear – be able to say what you do in one concise clear sentence. Be ready for conversations and to answer that “What do you do?” question.
6 Conversations matter – know how to start, continue and finish conversations. Make a goal to have at least two conversations with your fellow networkers at each meeting.
7 Always have business cards, or digital business cards available. However do not just give out business cards, make the connection first.
8 Move around – don’t sit with the same people each meeting. Make a point of sitting in a different place each meeting. Make connections and always welcome newcomers.
9 Leads and referrals – know the difference between leads and referrals. Referrals are what you want. Know how to give and receive a good referral.
10 Follow up – within 24 hours. The follow up can be email, phone call or mail. Put a system in place to ensure that you always follow up connections.
Bonus: be you, be authentic and let your passion shine. Cultivate good listening skills and have fun.
Effective networking will provide a good foundation for success in your journey to get known and be Influencer. Effective networking will provide a good foundation for your business to succeed.
Do you have other tips to share for successful networking? What has worked for you?
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Multi International Award Winner Speaking Mentor, Coach
International Best Selling Author, Radio Host
Clients work with Trish because they know she can help them have the confidence and self-belief to leverage their business with speaking and communication. Trish typically works with introverts, authors and advocates helping them to have the confidence to step up and share their message with those who need to hear it. Believe Act Share and become empowered for success become the Influencer you want to be.
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