The Business Edge Blog

August 10, 2010

4 Secrets of Successful Networking

I encourage my coaching clients to include networking in their marketing efforts.  By implementing the 4 Secrets of Successful Networking the effort can move from a long term marketing strategy toward a short term strategy with great outcomes.  The Secrets are:

1.  Be InterestED, not InterestING.  It’s really not about you – it’s about being a good listener and asking open ended questions of the people you meet.  If you are interestED in what they say you will learn about their business, their needs and how you may be able to serve them.  People rember those that were interestED  in getting to know them better. 

2.  Have a Goal in Mind.  Is there someone that you need to meet that will be attending the event?  Is there a business category that provides a great strategic alliance for you, serving the same clients?  Choose a goal.  If it is to meet a particular person or type of buisness, let those that are welcoming guests know who you are looking to meet.  I bet you will meet them before the event is over if you are clear on your needs and ask for help meeting those people.  No specifics in mind?  Set a goal for the number of  follow-up appointments,  or “coffee dates” you want to make for the next week.  If you meet someone that might be an ideal client or good power team member, set up an appointment to meet at a later date to discuss in more detail.  You’re at the event to network and so are they, so set an appointment to go into more detailed discussions, and keep networking. 

3.  Make a Good Connection for Someone.  You probably know great people.  If you are asking open ended questions and being interestED in what people have to say, you’ll find opportunities to provide a good referral to someone.  Let’s say you’re talking to someone who says they are frustrated by the new noise their car is making.  Can you refer them to the great mechanice you use?  Someone about ready to start looking for new office space?  Can you refer the commercial realtor that went out of their way to help you find the right space?  Be of service and people will remember you.

4.  Assume a Mico-Host Role.  Do you remember being uncomfortable when you first started attending networking events?  Look around.  There are newbies in your midst.  You’ll know them – they are the ones reading the signs on the wall, reading marketing material, or standing near the food without talking to anyone, doing exactly what you did when you were new at this.  Help these people!  Introduce them to someone you know, or someone you just met.  Help them overcome their anxiety.  They will remember you!

Happy Networking!

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2 Comments »

  1. Great post! Thanks for the tips.

    Comment by councilblogs — August 10, 2010 @ 10:54 am | Reply

  2. Great post Holly!! Your 4 tips really hit home – and are so true! Thanks!! 🙂

    Comment by Kelly V — October 12, 2010 @ 8:36 pm | Reply


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