When it comes to networking, some of us can feel a little left in the dark. It can be a daunting experience and can become quite repetitive if you’re not seeing many results in terms of lead generation and direct business. There is no need to feel isolated though, you can make your networking more effective with our quick guide!
HOW DO YOU FIND A NETWORKING EVENT?
Eventbrite is a fantastic way to find a large selection of events, seminars and workshops all which will involve networking. Another perk, lots of them are for free. Eventbrite is the core of many businesses social activity, but it won’t work on it’s own! You’ll need to scan through all the events up there and work out which events will be best for you and your business AND which ones will also have the best attendee list for networking!
Meetup is a great additional service to use alongside other event search techniques. It does not charge you to become a member or even attend events, but it does charge you to organise them yourself. Meetup is one of the largest, well-respected offline networking establishments, so it’s definitely something to look into.
Urbano is a paid membership service that offers countless networking opportunities. Having hosted over 1,000 networking events across London since is was founded, Urbano has helped businesses (including startups) achieve maximum exposure. We highly recommend that you get an Urbano Network membership, even if it’s just for their weekly Wednesday evening meet ups!
When it comes to business, Twitter is the life and soul of the communication world. By interacting with others in your field, along with engaging in conversation about relevant topics, you can gain a large following. With a larger following, comes more outreach. More outreach means more lead generation!
Facebook is an excellent tool which allows you to post more in depth, because there is no character count! Allowing you to add images and links, you can create content that is perfectly suited to your audience’ needs. Facebook is great for PPC (pay per click) campaigns. Being the top social media platform with just over 1.9 BILLION visitors every month, it’s one you can’t miss out on!
Speaking from our own experiences, we believe that its important to remember that when you attend networking events, other people are usually in the same boat as you. Don’t rush straight in and hope that a sales pitch will work, because it will fly straight over peoples heads! You should try listening to people talk about their business without laying on your side of things too thick – this will show that you are an honest individual, gaining trust quickly because you aren’t pushy. Listening is an excellent tool to employ when networking, as you can understand more about other business needs, which is where you can advise others where/if you can help.
Networking doesn’t have to be just about lead generation. Sometimes, its good for personal practice as well as just getting your name out there! If you can do something a little different from everyone else (even just changing the style of your business card, or the way you present yourself) you can really change the game and make yourself memorable.
People who develop personal relationships at networking events are far more likely to generate leads than those who just blabber on with a sales pitch and hope for the best. Our founder Thomas Jeffs once found common ground with a communications expert on the topic of Cricket, which eventually lead to a collaboration that has lasted years and is still strong today! It just goes to show that if you believe in your own business, you shouldn’t need to force it down other peoples throats. Be yourself, take a confident step forward, listen and engineer your conversation around their needs as a business.
Lucidica is the IT support team for London businesses.