Look happy and smile
If you are nervous about approaching strangers at networking events, make it easier for others to approach you. It’s so much easier to approach someone you don’t know if theyare smiling and look happy to be there. Happy smiling peopleactually attract others to them.
Wear a name badge
Not only does it make you look more professional, but it helps others to remember your name. If you have a name tag made with your branding, it also assists yourmarketing and advertising and makes your brand more memorable.
Always offer a business card
I’ve had people tell me that they don’t hand out a business card unless someone asks them for it. I’ve had others tell me they don’t ask for a business card, because if the person wants them to have one, they’ll offer it. See the problem? I always offer a business card and it often acts as a conversation starter. Don’t be shy, you’ve got more to lose by not offering your card.
Stand where people are likely to congregate. (bar/trade display etc)
It’s so much easier to make conversation with someone who is already standing beside you waiting for a drink or browsing a display table. You have an array of conversation topics in front of you; all you need to do is take the first step.
Ask people about themselves and their business
Show a genuine interest in others. Not only are you learning about their business, it will help you to understand what people could be good contacts for them. Plus, the more you know about someone’s business, the more it helps you understand how your business could be of assistance to them.
Ask open ended questions
Don’t ask questions that can be answered with YES or NO. For example “Did you have a good holiday” should become “How did you spend your holiday” or “Tell me about your holiday” It’s far more inviting and personal.
Listen with the intent to understand, not the intent to reply. Far too often we are so busy forming our response in our head; we are not really listening to what is actually being said. It’s also good to listen more than you speak. You’ll never learn anything while you are talking.
Befriend first timers
We all know the uncomfortable feeling of walking into an event for the first time. Imagine how relieved you’d feel if someone took you under their wing and introduced you around to others. Doing this for others will not only help you to be remembered, but will make you feel good as well.
Use people’s names often
People love the sound of their own name. If you use someone’s name often, it helps to build a connection with the person and also helps you to remember their name. Just don’t go overboard or it will sound forced and not genuine.
Always follow up!
Approximately only one in ten people ever follow up with people they’ve met at a networking event. Be one of the few and not one of the many. It’s all about building connections and relationships and each little thing you can do towards this makes a huge difference in the quality of your connections. It’s another link in the chain of being remembered.
Some Important Information:
A referral generates 80% more results than a cold call.
Approximately 70% of all jobs are found through Networking.
Most people you meet have around 200 contacts.
“The image you project, in many circumstances, is far more valuable than your skills or your record of past accomplishments” – Quote from University of Success.
The price your customer paid will be long forgotten, but the quality of the service they received will be remembered forever.
IT’S NOT WHAT YOU KNOW,
IT’S NOT WHO YOU KNOW,
IT’S WHO KNOWS YOU!