Business networking for Consultant is one of the most effective marketing and prospecting method you can use to grow your business. But if done incorrectly, it can be harmful to your business.
Business networking is a lot more than giving out business cards. It is about building trust. For Consultant the networking is a lot more than meeting people. It is about connecting with the right people.
Business networking is a lot more than collecting phone numbers. It is about staying in touch, about listening, addressing needs and looking for opportunities all at the same time.
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It is how as a Consultant we approach relevant business networking sessions that makes it work for us. Networking is about being authentic and genuine, building relationships and trust, and helping others. Although increased sales is the end goal, don’t participate in business networking to sell.
Build relationships and sales will follow naturally. People have to trust you before they’ll do business with you or refer you. Relationship capital is an immensely valuable part of business success. Put your energy, intention and attention on business networking.
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Identify which networking events you should attend. Pick groups that’ll help you achieve your goals. Find venues that make sense for your business. When you register for an event, schedule it like a meeting.
Determine how often you should be networking. How many times in a week, month, or quarter? Visit as many groups as possible.
Attend events with a plan and always try to learn something new. Prepare yourself for the event. Develop open-ended questions to ignite a conversation. Bring business cards but don’t give your business card to everyone you meet. Give cards to those who ask you for it. Try to sit with strangers. Don’t forget to mingle.
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Keep track of people you meet. Keep in touch with them and deepen your emotional connection. Establish a mutual beneficial relationship with other business people and potential clients/ customers. Meet with the group members individually so you get to know them better and try to build quality connections. Consider other group members as resources. focus on the group; listen and think about how you can help them. Focus on giving. Build trust within the group.
In order for small businesses to grow, there is need to network with other businesses, be it for partnership or for other purposes. This said, the most convenient way to network is through the Internet. You need technicians to design, install and secure the network systems for you, so that you can easily keep in touch with your net workers from the comfort of your enterprise premises.
For the network on your computers to be up and candid, you have to carefully select the most convenient software that will not keep going on and off. To do so, there is need for you to inform yourself intensively by reading books that have to do with science and technology. You can also get more information about these software on the Internet.
To mention just a few of such, there are those that have been made specifically for small business use. VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol in other words, is a networking system that allows you to make telephone calls over the Internet. For more information on how it works, you can always acquire more information from the Internet.
There is also the issue of using web cameras, such that you are able to see the person you are communicating to on your screen if they are also on a camera at their station. This networking makes communication more lively and it makes your communication appear like a one on one basis. Some of the most preferred cameras are Samsung Jack, Panasonic Lumix DMC ZS3S and Boxee Alpha for windows.
Do not expect to receive benefits right away. Do volunteering work for network groups to stay visible and give back. As a responsible Consultant you must show up regularly and on time, show others how you deal with business meetings and associates. Give quality referrals and leads. If someone gives you a referral, follow up on it in a timely manner. Follow through quickly and efficiently on referrals you are given. Take a referral seriously.
Don’t spam on social networks. Use the platforms designed for Consultant to build relationships and expand your network.
Limit self-promotion. Don’t sell. Build relationships. Be as helpful as you can. Share relevant information with others as people love to learn new things. Participate in discussions. Let others know you’re real. Be approachable. Treat your online connections just as valuable as your offline connections.