Oct
20

Surviving the Networking Jungle – Our Top 10 Tips for successful, fun networking

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Whether you are just getting your networking L-plates or are a contact-building buff, there are always new resources you can tap into to make your networking successful, fun, and a rewarding time-investment.

Be Visible, Be Trusted. And Be Successful.

Connecting, building trust and relationships with other professionals, industry contacts, your BNI peers, and other referral sources (and of course existing and potential clients) is fundamental to any business’ success. The potential for additional business momentum and income from building a “tribe” and trusting network is enormous.

BNI - Navigate the Networking JungleStroll Through The Networking Jungle

To get the best enjoyment and return on investment from your time spent business networking, you may want to create a few new habits that build on your existing networking strengths.

We would like to share our proven 10 Top Tips to successful networking with you, so that every business function, networking event and BNI meeting will be valuable, enjoyable, and a great experience for you.

Armed with these tricks of the trade, you will be ready to go and breeze through the (previously perhaps a little daunting) networking jungle!

The 10 Networking Tips You Can’t Do Without

Over the coming weeks we will delve deeper into each of these recommendations, plus share more networking ideas with you – to give you even more tools to grow your networking muscle.

  1. Arrive early – and leave late. Welcome new people, be warm and open.
  2. Work the room. Spot the connectors, open groups and “lost” people.
  3. Network as a group of complementary businesses or with those who use your services. Network with a client – a walking testimonial source, and a great way to forge a closer bond with your client.
  4. Be prepared. Bring a lot of business cards, and any marketing material. Wear a name badge with your own and your company’s name.
  5. Listen. Givers do gain, while hard sellers, who talk only about themselves, are seen as rude and pushy. Give the first referral, if you can.
  6. Have an objective. Be specific about the referrals and connections you are looking for. Have a good elevator pitch ready that matches your audience and goals.
  7. Create “VCP”: be Visible, Credible, – and reap the Profitability rewards. Trust takes time to develop, so network regularly.
  8. Be Consistent. How do you present yourself, how are you perceived? Match your appearance to the occasion – and your business. Ensure your online presence is consistent with the real-life “you” and business.
  9. Say thank you. It’s not only the polite thing to do, it will also make your referring contact feel appreciated, and it encourages future referrals.
  10. Follow up after your networking event! Your reputation (and that of your referrer) and conversion-rate hinge on this perhaps most important of all networking tips.

Our networking pointers are of course not all there is to successful, profitable and fun networking. But with practice, these first steps will see you go a long way in establishing a great business network, and trust. And that visibility and credibility are essential to getting referrals, making lasting connections, and to growing your business. So, which tip will you try out on your next networking quest?

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