Creative Solutions | Networking Networking Networking!
As someone that built her business through networking, this word isn’t just a word anymore. It is truly a way to build your business in the easiest way possible… by talking! Some of my clients that I have spoken to, are actually terrified of networking. Simply because it is a scary task that reminds them of public speaking!
Although I totally understand that point of view, it’s still so important to note that networking can be a relaxing task too. It doesn’t need to be in a huge setting. It doesn’t need to be nerve-wracking! What I love about networking, especially in my industry, is that I get to meet people from all different industries with different stories of how they got there! Regardless if I gain a client through networking, I do gain knowledge, I do gain friendships, and ultimately, I gain the “word of mouth” title.
On today’s post I am going to be chatting about 4 different ways to network! This is just from personal experience, but take my word for it… it works!
1. Say YES
Saying yes to opportunities to be in a setting where there are a ton of people networking, is key. They have the same idea as you… “Let’s go so we can meet people in our industry, and possibly win the “word of mouth” award!” Even if you say you’re going to a networking event for another reason… deep down this is there too. If you continue to say yes to these events, you’ll gain the reputation of being involved, which ultimately means you’re willing to put the time and the effort into your clients as well. Being uncomfortable is such a huge learning experience, and it will ultimately help you grow into a solid professional.
2. Bring Your Business Cards
This may seem like an obvious one, but I can’t tell you how many times i’ve forgotten my business cards when I’m heading to a networking event! It’s silly, but it happens. What i’ve done, is I’ve actually placed a stack in my car so even if I forget them in the house, I have back ups! How else are these professionals that your networking with going to remember you? If they pull out a piece of paper with a handwritten website and phone number… they’ll tend to skip over it. At least I do.
3. Less Is More
Less is more is a motto I live by in my professional life. Keeping it simple, whether it is a conversation I am having with clients, potential clients, or even with professionals in my industry at a networking event, will actually help those individuals remember you. They’ll be intrigued to know more. This goes for your business cards as well. Don’t waste the money on getting extremely expensive cards, i.e metal, wood, etc. because one, it’s pricy, and two, it’s unnecessary. A business card with your logo, name, phone number, website and email, is all you need. Simple simple simple!
4. Be Yourself
Again, this may seem like an obvious statement or “tip” but I cannot count how many times that I’ve met someone that is boasting about their professional life, or even their personal life in such an over the top way, that I literally tune out… I’m sure I’ve been that person too, but I really focus on speaking about my business in a realistic way, rather than an over exaggerated way. I just find this brings in great business and also creates friendships!
Four years ago, I went to a networking event and met the owner of The 530 Bride, and without this experience, I wouldn’t be where I am today. A 25 year old entrepreneur, or the previous co-owner of one of the top wedding planning companies in the North State. I’m thankful for networking and where it has brought me! Cheers to new adventures, new meetings, and new opportunities.
The 530 & Co.