In-person networking is crucial for the success and growth of businesses, as it provides opportunities for the local business community to meet up. It’s time to take advantage of this opportunity. With a little preparation and some tricks up your sleeve, you can succeed. Let’s go through them together.
Attending meet-and-greet events is an excellent opportunity to expand your network. However, with the passing of the pandemic and social distancing, the skills we learned in childhood might have become rusty. And, after three years of meetings over laptops, we may be more familiar with setting up a WiFi network than establishing personal connections.
In-person networking is crucial for the success and growth of businesses, as it provides opportunities for the local business community to meet up, which is why a multitude of networking events have emerged in our city after the reopening of society, Including our popular BGH Match free networking events. It’s time to take advantage of this opportunity. With a little preparation and some tricks up your sleeve, you can succeed. Let’s go through them together.
It all starts before the event; let’s get prepared
Let people know you are attending - Attending a networking event? Why not spread the word on social media and see if anyone else wants to join you?
Using the event’s designated hashtag (for example, #BGHMatch) to share your attendance and checking out who else is talking about it is always a good idea. It will give you an idea of what to expect and who else will be there. If you find someone interesting, you can drop them a message or a comment to arrange a meeting during the event. This will make for a much warmer introduction as they already know about you.
Develop your elevator pitch - To make the most out of your platform and stand out from the pack, creating and rehearsing a quick speech outlining your product or service is crucial. You only have a minute or so to introduce yourself at an event, so make this precious moment count. By letting others know who you are, what you do, the problem you can help to solve, and most importantly, how they can connect with you to continue the conversation, you can make a lasting impression and maximise your networking opportunities. So, make sure you have a strong and concise pitch ready to go!
Take a colleague with you - It’s always great to have a friendly face in the room with you! Why not bring someone along to the event? Just remember not to stick together all the time, as you don’t want to miss out on meeting new people - who knows, your target could be among them!
It’s time to break the ice
Speak to people you don’t know - Attending a networking event can be overwhelming since you are surrounded by unfamiliar faces. It is easy to stick with the people you already know in such situations, but that defeats the purpose of going! After all, the point of networking events is to make new connections. Let’s muster up your courage, step out of your comfort zone, and approach new people.
Ways to open and join a conversation - Starting a conversation is never easy, especially when it comes to the first line. It’s important to avoid jumping in with your pitch right away. A good starting point could be discussing the occasion or venue. Another great approach is to give the lead to your counterpart by asking about their reason for attending the event. This way, you might be able to find a clue to start a conservation based on their answer.
Listen and ask questions - Conversation is a two-player game. It’s crucial to listen actively to what your counterpart is saying. To keep the conversation flowing smoothly, it’s also essential to ask relevant questions at the right time and provide open-ended answers so your counterpart can respond and engage meaningfully. Remember that networking is about getting to know each other, so avoid dominating the conversation.
Get connected - Never forget to connect or grab the contact details of whoever you speak to at the event. This is how you expand your network with newly acquired connections, and who knows, maybe it could help generate future business leads or create new collaboration opportunities. Using LinkedIn is a great, paper-free way to keep in touch with your connection, as it can keep updating them with your ongoing activity. With the LinkedIn app on your phone, you can scan the QR code in the app and get connected quickly.
3 simple steps to get connected by using LinkedIn app
- Open your LinkedIn app
- Click on the search panel at the top of the page, the QR code will appear on the right-hand side of the search panel
- Click on your unique QR code and start connecting
Leave the conversation politely - If you want to maximise your time at the networking event, don’t be afraid to politely excuse yourself from a conversation once you’ve found common ground to work together. The whole point of networking is to build relationships that can continue beyond the event.
Keep calm and be relaxed - Remember, everyone in the same room is just like you - looking to expand their network, so you have no need to be nervous. It is not a competition, so stay calm, relax and don’t worry about making a certain number of connections. Instead, focus on enjoying the conversations and getting to know new people. It’s a great opportunity to make new friends and business contacts!
So, you are now ready, and it’s time to put your new networking knowledge into action. Let checkout our BGH Match events at a local venue near you at the website below: