In my previous post, Personal Networking can benefit your Blog, I highlighted some benefits of face to face networking and where to find a local meet-up event.
Following on from this, I wish to share some tips that will help prepare you for one.
If you are new to this whole networking stuff, it may sound a bit daunting and intimidating at first -
meeting someone for the first time, talking about what you do,
what your business is about and so on…
I can still remember when I attended my first ever meet-up event,
on my way there I heard this little voice in my head saying -
“turn back you muppet… you gonna to look like an idiot…
you don’t even know anyone there…”
Nevertheless, I pursued on, kicking aside my fears.
I had one intention in mind, and that was to make new friends and learn something new.
There should be an overall motive when networking on any medium. If your motives are good, goodwill will follow.
And you never know, these relationships may end up being great business or personal opportunities.
Be An Ice Breaker
Now, with fear driven out and the right attitude in place,
you now have the freedom to mingle and instigate a conversation.
If you find a yourself standing alone – start introducing yourself to others.
Open the conversation by asking what they think of the meeting, what they blog about e.t.c
Although, with that said, 80% of my interactions had been instigated by others – They’ve beaten me to it
So, to do a quick recap:
- Banish your fears.
Personal interaction is bound to happen at some stage in your blog’s life-cycle. i.e. meeting fellow Bloggers, Advertisers e.t.c.
- Have the right attitude.
Your motive is really important here. People see through fake individuals who do nothing but promote and talk about themselves – Do more listening.
- Be an ice breaker
Start a conversation. Most of the time, your effort are always appreciate and valued.
It is important to prepare yourself when you attend a meet-up group.
One of the first questions regularly asked are “What do you do?”,
“What is your Business about” or “What do you blog about”.
I was asked this over and over again. After a couple of shaky answers, I soon got into the rhythm of it.
I would recommend reciting what your business is about within a 30 seconds time frame – Stick to this and you’ll be fine.
Last thing you and want to is over-sell yourself or bore them.
Spend equal time listening and talking. Also, always ask questions – It shows you are fully engaged in the conversation.
Have your business card handy and produce it at an appropriate time.
Don’t pull out your business card before you start talking or 5 seconds into introducing yourself.
I have had several instances when this has happened – not a good look.
I personally find it distracting – It becomes an awkward moment when I end up reading the business card instead of listening.
Rather, let the business card hand-over support the conversation not the other way round.
In your preparation, keep the following points in mind:
- Be able to explain what your blog/business is about in 30 secs.
- Engage yourself in the conversation.
- Arm yourself with business cards.
Don’t expect others to remember your your domain name – it is forgotten the moment you leave them.