Let’s be honest… for most people business networking is not bringing in any business. I might be fun but from a business standpoint it’s pretty much a waste of time. But just a few ideas and changes can actually get you massive results from it.
For example here are 3 mistakes people make even before they have arrived at the networking event.
Business networking pitfall 1) Going into the battle without a plan.
Most people arrive at a networking event with even the slightest plan of what they want to achieve and how they are going to do it.
If you were doing any other serious business activity, you would have a plan. Even if you were playing a serious sports game you would have a plan. Without a plan you are almost certain to lose the game.
These are 2 things you should include in your networking plan:
1) First of all you have to know exactly what you want to get our of the event. Are you looking for contacts in a specific field? Are you looking for JV partners? Are you looking for prospects and if yes what would be their specific profile.
Or maybe you are looking for ideas, but whatever it is If you know what you are looking for you will have so much better chance of achieving it.
2) Second: Your plan have to include how you are going to stand out and be remembered. If you are like everyone else at the event you wont be remembered.
REMEMBER: YOU MUST BE DIFFERENT
Business networking pitfall 2) Not doing any research on the participants or the organizers.
Every single time someone shows up to my events not even knowing that I’m the person running my events. It makes me wonder if they haven’t heard of the internet.
It’s so easy to google/bing people to see who they are and what they do and the more you know about people the easier it is to connect with them. Also by saying a few things that shows you know something about them shows to them you are a pro.
Business networking pitfall 3) Showing up late.
The most influential people will often show up early for events. That’s why YOU need to be there early for two important reasons. The first being that you will of course get a lot more out of creating relationship with the influencers and leaders of a particular group. These people will know more people than the average person and they will be the key to the rest of the group.
Second… When people arrive and see you talking and hanging out with the leaders you will be perceived to be on of the leaders. When people perceive you to be a leader they will start running after you instead of you having to chase them.
These are just a few things you can do to improve your batting average at networking events, and if you really want to become a “networking pro” go here to get my book turn your contacts into cash