Networking Tips

It is the first full week of the New Year and what’s on your mind?  For me, I am working on making connections and networking.  Do you network? 

I am usually asked these questions as I meet new business owners. At one point, I was attending networking events several times a week and that took up a lot of my time. I changed it up a bit and now I attend fewer networking events but get more connections and new business by following some of these tips:  

1)      Find a free or low cost networking group.  I find that there are many wonderful groups out there but you will end up with a negative marketing budget by being a member of each group.

2)      Try out a few groups to get a “feel” of the culture.  After several visits, you can make a decision whether you want to return or become a member.

3)      Limit it to once a week.  I am part of several networking groups but many of them meet once a month.  With this in mind, I can plan out my calendar around appointments.

4)      Have a one on one.  This is a meeting with another person which allows you to learn more about what they do and vice versa.  It is NOT an opportunity to SELL your product or service.  These meetings provide a more detail understanding of what type of referrals you are both looking for.

5)      Get involved.  I may not be able to pass along new business to all of my contacts but I will spread the word on an upcoming event, seminar, sale, discount, etc when I can.  Sometimes the new connection is more valuable than new business.

6)      Not into networking?  Work a full time job?  Not to worry.  Many networking groups have monthly, quarterly or holiday parties that are held in the evenings or on the weekends.  Stay connected with others that network more than you. Ask those contacts to send you upcoming event lists. 


These are just a few tips on networking.  If you have others, please share.  Have a great Wednesday!!!

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