When you start a new business one of the key things on your to do list will be to get your business name out there and start getting customers (and cash!) in. A common method of doing this is by attending networking events. Sadly all to often people go to networking a few times, get disappointed that they haven’t got any leads and leave never to return.
Networking is more of a long game where you will only reap benefits if you keep going month after month. Here we have listed 5 benefits of networking showing why you should keep going to those monthly networking breakfasts and evening events:
Knowledge & Advice
If you don’t get any referrals or clients initially from networking all is not lost. Most networking events have guest speakers who are experts in their field. This will help you get valuable advice for free that you can impact in your day to day business.
Everyone likes to be thought of as an expert. When you go to a networking event you will meet people from all different types of industries. They will simply love to prove to you their industry knowledge by giving you lots of in depth technical help to questions you might have.
This is especially useful for new businesses owners who are new to the world of marketing, law, logistics and other business areas.
At the end of a networking meeting you will leave the room with your pockets stuffed full or business cards. Make sure you keep them and connect with each person on Linkedin, you never know when they might come in handy.
These connections can open doors for you in the future even if you don’t know how yet.
Confidence & self-improvement
At networking events you are there representing your business. Many event put time aside for each attendee to give a quick little pitch for your business. Going every week and speaking to a room of people about your business will help you improve your confidence and also hone your marketing skills.
Don’t expect to walk away from your first networking session with sales but if you keep going, make a positive impact and get to know people eventually you will generate some leads.
Networking does take time and to see results you need to be committed and attend the same event regularly. It’s not suited to all types of business, so for example if you run an online store its not really worth your time.
When deciding whether you should go think about the return on investment. Going to a networking event costs money to attend and fuel costs to get there. Then add in the cost of your time. Does the return you get from going more than compensate for the costs? Here a tip – the return isn’t always financial.
If you happen to see us at any networking events – come up and say hi! We are always looking to meet new people.