A great many marketing specialists suggest that you should add networking to your overall general marketing campaign. I never was one who received the fuzzes by walking into a room full of strangers and trying to say something that would grab their immediate attention and become enamored with me. I am fast to admit that I, like many of you, had this networking thing backwards which probably was the cause of my networking chagrin.
Looking at networking from a visibility vantage point, at the very least you should be looking for ways to work your net. Let me explain.
If you were like me, you were not particularly fond of walking into a room full of strangers figuring out what to say that would make an initial impression. I have since learned that the good news is you don’t have to. Your forward progress and resulting success will come from taking a different mindset.
- You’re not attending this event to “sell.” Therefore, there is no need to exhibit any stress whatsoever. Your single objective is to meet another hard working, fun-loving professional like yourself who is also interested in expanding their contact list.
- You attended this event to meet a few proactive, interesting, people who enjoy playing the game of business. Chances are a few of them are in the room. Your challenge is to find them.
- Your “assignment” is to ask questions, so you get others to open up with you. Get them talking. And then keep fueling the conversation with genuine interest so they keep talking.
You go to networking events as an interested participant knowing that there will be a few people worth getting to know. There will also be a few bozos. Just don’t spend too much time schmoozing with the bozos. And, please don’t become one of the bozos.
Mike Marchev is a down-to-earth motivating sales trainer, author and business coach who specializes in the travel industry. For a complimentary copy of Mike’s 12-Word Marketing Plan send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with the number “12” in the Subject Box. His daily column is made possible by AmaWaterways.