Business networking is one of the most effective way of marketing yourself and your business. By attending such events, you’ll have the chance to meet like-minded individuals from whom you can share and possibly discover and learn new things.
It also presents opportunities to meet potential customers and clients, as well as possible business suppliers.
Today we give you 10 practical tips you should think about before attending a business networking event.
1. Learn and assess if the people attending the event belong to your target market or if they are within your social interest before attending the event;
2. Have a general idea what your objectives are in attending the event. Be specific if you want to meet new clients, socialize or find new business partners;
3. Rehearse a personal introduction to yourself and your business;
4. Learn how to extend and give a firm handshake;
5. Bring your business cards and don’t be shy to give them out. Also, when receiving a business card, be sure to take a look and read it. The giver will appreciate it. You can also do something memorable and ask for an extra business card and tell the person that you have someone in mind that might be interested with their business. It’s a great way of showing genuine concern. Trust me you will receive it in return;
6. During the event, be sincere and genuinely show interest in talking to other people;
7. Be ready to contribute to discussions and offer advice when there’s an opportunity to help. Be a good conversationalist and ask open-ended questions to encourage the others to share their thoughts as you sincerely listen;.
8. When you meet a potential customer, try to keep the conversation casual and don’t sound too eager to do business with the person. However, be sure that you’ll be able to get their contact details and other relevant information.
9. If someone is holding you for too long, then there’s nothing wrong with being straightforward and courteously saying that you want to go on and meet other people in the room. Excuse yourself politely and walk away.
10. After the event, write down every relevant information you learned, sort out the business cards you collected and plan the things you need to do, such as commitments you might have made and immediately scheduling calls to customer leads
With this tips, you only have yourself to blame if you attend a networking event and leave feeling wasted. Just follow the simple guidelines, and your network just got bigger, the business even better