MEET AND MINGLE
Participating in industry meetings and conferences is a great way to nurture relationships with colleagues and meeting new people. However, while networking, be clear about your objective that you are socialising with an aim to expand your business network and to acquaint each other’s business patterns and working styles.
MAKE CONVERSATIONS INTERACTIVE
Don’t opt for small talk, which starts with your introduction and ends at bidding goodbye. You are there to learn more about the people who are attending the event and to uncover potential business opportunities. Ensure that you ask questions and have conversations that give you an insight into their minds and business perspective.
After you return home from the event, immediately jot down information about everything that happened while you were out. For instance, whom you met, what you talked about, did you promise to call/ email/ connect with someone, etc. Getting this all down on paper while it’s still fresh in your mind will leave you better prepared for follow-up conversations and will help you remember important information.
Always find a good reason to follow up post-event and look for potential business opportunities. If you’ve asked the right questions, you should have an idea of how you can be of value to that person and find a way to take action on it to keep the momentum and the relationship going.
BE ACTIVE ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Grow your business network by using social media sites and apps, such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and online networking communities. LinkedIn is a great place to start and grow your business network. Using a combination of tried-and-true business development tactics along with new social media strategies will grow your business network, as well as your company.