What is it about networking that helps boost your business?
Networking is such an effective business development tool, if done correctly!
But how does it work? And what’s considered ‘effective networking’?
Networking works by creating an understanding of you and your business, through regular contact with potential clients and referrers.
People buy from people they know and like, and networking is not a sales arena but a mutual place to exchange ideas and build business relationships. No one wants to be talked at and its important that people attend with a view to listening to others rather than talking about themselves.
Done well, networking builds strong, lasting relationships with others, who aren’t necessarily from your desired business sector, but every person you meet is potentially an introducer to others who could become a client one day.
It’s about investing your time and getting to know others well. It doesn’t happen overnight, but with mutual respect you will raise your profile and show your commitment to creating an excellent network and therefore being seen as someone others want to mix with.
Why doesn’t work in networking?
I have found that those that go in for an initial conversation that begins ‘Hello, I’m Joe Bloggs and my business is Counting Pencils. I’m brilliant at what I do and I’d love to tell you all about it’ and then throws a business card in my face are the least likely people for me to want to do business with. I want them to show an interest in me and what I do, find out about my day, break the ice with some small talk – after that you can then talk business but my business is ME and therefore if someone isn’t interested in me then they’re not interested in my business.
I then like to reciprocate and learn about them and see how we can support each other in future.
My network is very varied and covers all sectors. Event management is something that is used by charities, corporates as well as individuals, but as the creator of the JK Business Club it’s important I am able to share details of networking events that could benefit my connections and their businesses.
As an avid networker I run strategy training sessions so I can help business owners and their staff plan how to get the most from their networking and to give them a plan to follow for their business development.
If you or a colleague would like more information on that please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we can have a chat on the phone or over a coffee and see how I can help.