I think everyone should be looking for new business networking tips!
If you aren’t already attending business networking events, then you should be! Business networking is a great way to expand your networks, acquire knowledge and make new connections. It’s also the most cost effective way to generate new business opportunities.
If you do attend business networking events, are you getting the most out of them? Do you have a business networking strategy that clearly defines your aims, objectives and goals?
Sometimes it’s important to step back and take time to understand why we do things.
These are the main reasons why I believe everyone should attend regular business networking events –
Check out these 9 business networking tips!
The first 6 are some ‘not so obvious’ reasons why you should attend regular business networking events –
Raise your (and your business) profile
Being visible at the right kind of business networking events will get you noticed and hopefully recognised by your business community. This will help you to build a good reputation and raise credibility.
Receive the right kind of advice
If you surround yourself with like-minded business people there’s a chance that you will pick up hints, tips and advice to help your business succeed. Networking is a fantastic way to connect with experienced business leaders who you wouldn’t otherwise have access to.
Increase your personal confidence
I’ve always firmly believed that business networking is great for both confidence building and personal development. Business networking can be great experience for both extroverts and introverts. Talking to new people and making new connections can be daunting at first, but hugely beneficial in the long run.
Become the ‘go to’ person
As your network widens and grows, you’ll naturally develop lots more contacts and connections. Your existing networks will start to appreciate how well connected you’ve become and naturally ask you for recommendations.
Developing new friends
This is more personal than business related. I’ve generated strong friendships from attending networking events. If you surround yourself with like-minded people, then you’ll naturally develop friendships.
Benefit from helping other people
As you become a more experienced and regular networker, you’ll be able to help other people. Helping other people is what networking is really about! You’ll be able to share knowledge, advice and tips, pass referrals, or point people in the right direction. You’ll gain a lot of personal satisfaction from helping people.
These are the ‘well known’ and ‘more obvious’ reasons why people attend business networking events –
Find out about new opportunities
Attending the right kind of business networking events will ensure that you’re perfectly placed to hear about and maximise upon many different new opportunities.
New opportunities could include the chance to partner with other businesses, learning about grants and funding, being invited to other events, hearing about tenders, finding new suppliers.
Make new connections
Business networking events are great for making new connections. It’s important to think about how you will treat your new business connections. I believe making connections is a massively important step in a successful business networking strategy.
I always advise people to help as many of your new connections as you can. When you connect with someone, always ask yourself – ‘what can I do to help that person’.
Generate referrals or sales
This is probably your ultimate goal and the reason why you’ve decided (or are thinking about) attending business networking events. It shouldn’t be your main goal! Your main goal should be to make as many good quality connections as possible.
Referrals and sales will probably be generated from your business networking strategy, but it shouldn’t be your main focus.
If you think that business networking is for you, then I recommend developing a strategy and plan to ensure that you get the most out of attending these events.