The point of networking events is to get to know the people around you. To expand your sphere of influence. Networking may not work for you today, or tomorrow, or even next year but if you stick with it and work the program laid out by the event managers then your are certain to leave knowing more people than before you attended.
The theory goes… The more people who know you well, that trust that you are the expert in your field then the more people who you will have recommending your business. Pretty simple – Networking Works!
If you don’t know where to start I would suggest your local Chamber of Commerce. From there you will meet people who are also attending other networking events.
Most networking events are setup to allow you to tell your story or paint the picture for the other attendees on exactly what you do.
Some networks are OPEN which means there could be any number of banks or promotional products people at the same event. Some others are CLOSED which means there will only be one bank or one person promoting a particular product.
I attended one yesterday morning that had a slight twist to it. This networking group fashioned itself as a continuing business education meeting. Each meeting focused on different topics. Yesterday’s topic was on the applying gratitude into the sales process.
Most of these networking groups charge for you to join. You can attend for free for a couple of times then you have to pony up the cash. They can be costly. The Chamber runs me about $600/yr and another I attend runs of $200/year.
My advice if your business needs more leads is to attend one of the many networking events in your city or state. Get from behind your computer and go meet people. My only word of caution is that there are so many networking events that you can spend your whole day networking which means you are not doing all of your other job functions.
David Peterson – President: Atlanta Sales and Consulting