Business Networking
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I’m designating September as collaboration and business networking month. Why not? It’s the beginning of the final quarter of the year and the time when business owners usually think about how to close out the year strong with new sales, new clients, and new projects.

I’ve built my business with collaboration and business networking, but that’s not new or different, but a lot of people don’t’ know how to network or collaborate for success. So I asked my colleagues and clients to share their best networking strategies and boy did they respond.

Below, I’ve outlined what they shared with me so you can use those ideas in your own business and finish the year strong.

Lily Chauvin Build relationships ❤️Be authentic “say what you mean and do what you say” #peopleoverprofits

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Delmar Johnson Three Networking Strategies I’ve learned over the years.

Never go to a networking event to meet people you don’t know or that you may or may not win.

Strategy #1: G.T.M – Go to meet someone you know will be there who you want to have the relationship with

Strategy #2: G.T.K. – Get to know someone you already know and want to know better (your target is always guaranteed)

Strategy #3: P.T.I. – Partner to introduce. Partner up with someone you invite or they’re already going. Each of you introduce the other to everyone you know. It a more powerful introduction

Note: Build deep relationships versus broad relationships – they will turn into more business, profits, etc.

What are some connecting techniques?

Inquire about the other person and their business

Engage them about themselves or what they are interested in (Ex: What are you doing? What are you up against?) this helps you begin to hear and see if you can help them. www.hrbrainforhire.com

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Stacey Ruth Be a connector. Make introductions and ask for introductions – always offer value first. They may not be your next client – but they probably know the person who IS. www.staceyruthsays.com

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Wendy Watkins Mark out one hour after each event for follow up. Follow up is where the magic happens.  www.WendyWatkins.com

Sharon Heart Reid I’ve learned that once you’ve made a connection, ensure that you make a scheduled appt. to further discuss how you can mutually support each other before you leave.

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Candice L Davis Write a book (even a short one) that demonstrates your expertise, and don’t be afraid to give it away for free to potential clients, referral sources, and joint venture partners. People might lose your business card or throw it away, but they’ll keep your book, and you’ll always be top of mind when your area of expertise comes up. CandiceLDavis.com

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Marie Fratoni When networking, it’s most important to speak about how you serve people and what results you help your clients produce. Make your 30 Second Infomercial about your target audience, so they can find you. Craft a message that communicates and connects.www.getclientseverywhere.com

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Listen by clicking this link.

Precious S Brown When networking you must go to the event with a plan. I use a three-goal system. Map out the goals for the event and attend with the intention of accomplishing the goal.

1. Have a conversation with minimum three new people.

2. Provide value in each conversation.

3. Follow up within 24 hours (no matter how many contacts I make)

www.preciousempowers.com

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Althea McIntyre WHAT NOT TO DO

To be successful in networking you have to not ONLY know what to do but also what not to do.

Here’s one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned.

1. Stop networking with those who are not your ideal client, customer and/or joint venture partner just to “network.” This applies to online networking as well. As you and your business grows and evolves so will your ideal client, customer, and joint venture partner so EXPECT to grow, evolve and change where and with whom you network.

Believe it or not, networking should be fun not a draining, exhausting business activity that you have to do. www.thebestcareerforme.com

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Anita R. Henderson Be Curious and Keep It Tight. What?

– Be Curious: Put on your Oprah Winfrey or Barbara Walters hat and interview the people you meet as if you’re hosting them. Learn about their business, what they love about it, who they serve, and what they need right now in their business. As a gracious, confident, and effective host, you’ll definitely make room in the conversation to share the same about yourself. Resolve to provide a resource or referral within 48 hours as part of your follow up.

– Keep It Tight: Seek to meet, and make meaningful connections with, only a handful of people. You won’t be able to meet everyone, so don’t stress about that. When wearing your Oprah hat, you just can’t interview them all. So don’t focus on the ‘spray and pray’ method (tossing your business card to everyone). Instead, connect with a few key people, commit to the follow-up, and make those connections count.  http://www.writeyourlife.net/

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Short on time? Download a PDF version of this blog post and go through it at your own pace.

 

Alicia Couri Preparation – Know your purpose for going there and have your strong brand story ready to share but only after you learn about them first. Followup is key, it is the whole purpose of going in the first place… www.aliciacouri.com.

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Andrea Merriman My best networking strategy is to listen. I go to an event and introduce myself and listen as they explain who they are. I show interest, ask questions and schedule a time to meet after.

I tell them a little of who I am and give a card with my website. When we meet (whether phone or person) if they haven’t taken the time to explore the site it tell me about the person.

It is not wasting my time to meet because they know I am genuine, if they aren’t ready, they will be a champion for me when the time comes. Or if a friend needs my services or someone to speak on my topic.  Www.jymhelpprogram.com

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Deborah Daniel Always go to networking events with the intention of Tell not Sell. Make sure who you are networking with really knows what you do and listen to find the same about her. Set your intention that networking is to meet people to later have sales conversations with- that way you are not disappointed when you don’t leave with a sale. The sales and relationships come in the follow-up.

 

Short on time? Download a PDF version of this blog post and go through it at your own pace.

 

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Lori A. Manns I use this strategy P.A.C.P. Plan Ask. Connect and Pitch. Plan your strategy. What do you want to accomplish at the event? Whether you’re getting leads, promoting an event or just growing your network. Have a plan. Ask everyone you meet, how you can support them? You might be able to become an immediate resource for someone and thereby become unforgettable. Connect – Learn something about the people you meet that has nothing to do with business so you get to know a little about them as a person. Pitch – Make sure your elevator pitch is ready. You must be prepared to talk about what you do and who you help in a compelling manner. www.qualitymediaconsultants.com

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Susan Phariss Before I go to an event, I set a goal–usually, it’s that I will connect with the one person I need to connect with. Sometimes I’m looking for speaking opportunities, sometimes I’m looking to connect with my ideal client. The main point is to always have a clear and reasonable goal. I’ve been successful meeting my goal every single time! https://brainfitnessstrategies.com

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Cheranissa Roach Listen first then speak. Ask questions about them and how you can assist support their vision. Know where you are going and do not go just to go and get or give cards. Your time is precious and so is yours. Be wise and strategic yet focused on helping and being helped. www.mycoachchar.com

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Sharese McCommons Use the F.O.R.M technique to break the ice when meeting new people. Ask these questions: F=family O=occupation R=recreation M=money. These are great topics to get a person talking

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C Nicole Henderson One of the best strategies in networking is to be a farmer and not a hunter. Plant seeds, nurture, build relationships over time. The hunter comes in full barrel and has no idea about who they are passing cards to, they are spraying the room with their cards and it is ineffective. Everyone is not your ideal client. Also, you want to give and serve in your networking opportunities. www.cnhenderson.com

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Watch and listen to my interview with Rhonda Hudgins, founder of Celebrating Connections 2018. She is a professional networker and known as the “Networking Ninja.”

 

 

This blog was originally posted on my LinkedIn page on September 6, 2018

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