5 Ways to Talk to Strangers at Local Networking Events
Many entrepreneurs and business owners go to business networking events, but only a few of them practice effective networking techniques. When attending a business networking event, it’s important to comfortably mingle with like-minded professionals in a way that’s mutually beneficial. The more you practice these networking tips, the more successful you will be at local business networking events.
- Ask and remember names. There’s power in using the name of someone you just met in a conversation. It’s a great way to establish a connection. When meeting someone, shake their hands and say your name so that they will give you their name in return.
- Talk about them. Perhaps the most common mistake made at networking events is not focusing on others. Ask others what they do. If someone asks what you do, quickly answer them, but turn the spotlight back on them. Try to allot about 5 minutes for them to talk about themselves. Ask questions about what they like most about their position and what they like least can be used when you explain what you can do for them.
- Shake hands. A great handshake provides non-verbal communication about the type of person you are. Don’t forget to smile and make eye contact, too!
- Give a compliment. After giving others the chance to talk about how they do business, find the opportunity to compliment them on their strategy. As a last resort, you can compliment them on their appearance. You could say something like, “That tie goes great with your blazer.”
- Ask for a card. Remember that the purpose of networking events is to make an introduction and establish a connection. A lot of people ruin this opportunity by moving too quickly into a sale during a networking event. No one likes to be sold while they are networking. Ask for a card and find out if they are on social networking sites like LeadsGroup.com. Follow up with them for a meeting only if it’s a good return on your time investment.
Business networking events are a great way to establish lifelong lucrative relationships. It’s important to provide a lasting first impression that shows others that you care about them and helping solve their problems. Connecting with the professionals you meet on Introducing Me after your initial introduction will add value by sharing local networking events, helpful leads groups, and developing a great business relationship.