The point of networking is to meet new people you can work with to grow your business. That means that what you get out of a networking event doesn’t just stay within the time frame of the event. It goes beyond it. To ensure you are more successful at getting your new connections to connect with you after networking, it’s best to prime them during the event.
Two Ways to Prime for an After Networking Event Connection
Priming means getting ready. You can get connections ready to connect with you following a networking event by preparing them for you to reach out them. For example, you may say something like, “I’ve enjoyed our conversation. We need to pick this back up sometime this week. How about I get your phone number and call you tomorrow to set up a meeting?” As you can see, in this example, you priming the connection. You are telling the person you want to connect with him or her after the event, you are asking for a way to connect with the person and you’re even give the person a time. Now, since many people say they are going to call and never do, many people won’t take you seriously. That’s a good thing though. When you do call, they will be impressed with following through on your commitment.
Telling the person you are going to connect during the event isn’t the only way to prime. You can actually take it one step further. Instead of saying, “I’m going to call you.” why not set up a meeting. For example, you can say, “This has been a great conversation. I think we can do great thing for each other in growing our businesses. How about we meet at the sushi bar tomorrow at 6 to continue our discussion?” When you do this you are establishing a connection for after the networking event. The next step is to ask for the person’s phone number. You can then follow up with a reminder phone call.
Some of you might think this is coming on too strong. Yes, it may seem like that for some of you, but for others, you may feel that this is what you do to actively move your business towards a goal. It’s not something you have to do with every single person you meet, but for those that you really want to add to your networking rolodex, it’s effective.
Why not try this at your next networking event? All you need to do is step out of your comfort zone and establish a meeting or set up a call. You can do it. It will be great.
Have you ever done this before? What happened? What other tips do you have for priming people for a connection?
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