So, you have a full day and can’t always get around to your nearest networking events. We’ve all been there. It’s tough, as it is imperative that every professional or entrepreneur have a failsafe networking strategy in place to reap the rewards of success.
In this guide we will hook you up with our top tips on creating a networking strategy that will last, and deliver results. Let’s get started.
1. Create Your Event: Host Dinner Parties
If you can’t make it to a networking event, bring it to your home! A great way to get to know people is to sit and have a casual meal with them. If you are aware of any prospective partners or clients in your area, be sure to send them an invite.
You can also host the event at a restaurant, which leaves you with more time socialising and getting to know your contacts on a personal level.
2. Have a Plan of Action Mapped Out
This takes some planning and prepping. First, you’ll have to identify influencers and people you would like to meet, your goals and how the relationship will be beneficial to both parties. You can also include specifics such as how much time to spend on each.
Something to keep in the back of your mind is identifying individuals that can be beneficial to other people in your established network and introducing them.
3. Review Your Network on a Regular Basis
Anything goes stale after a while. You should always keep a tight grip on your networking affairs and know which contact should not be in your network anymore and which could stay. A great strategy is to review your network once a year and starting on a clean slate.
Reviewing is key to your growth, because your goals and priorities change over time. Make sure your network aligns with your focus area and you should be good to go.
4. Have Great Networking Etiquette
And no, we don’t mean avoid boasting about yourself (but please, don’t), we simply mean pay it forward! If you have anyone in your network you can introduce to another influencer or prospect, then do so. Networking does not revolve around you.
It is built around communities and building healthy business relationships. By introducing two connections to one another, you may be helping them succeed.
5. Have One Ambitious Contact
Kind of like the Elvis of your list of contacts if you like. If there is one key influencer that you wish you could get in touch with or be on a first name basis with, add them to your list. This will keep you motivated and continually aim for more.
Do some research on your high-profile prospect and establish whether or not both parties will benefit from the relationship. Once you have, make contact and explain how you can add value to them.
It’s hard work, but if you keep at it you’ll do just fine. Remember, the road to the top may be rocky, but it’s not what you know but who you know that almost certainly always makes a difference. Practice makes perfect so keep working at your networking strategy, and try to attend as many events as possible.