Always be Prepared – Mentally
Your mind set should be on helping others, getting to know their business and building a relationship with them.
Practice Makes Perfect
Create and practice your “elevator pitch” – a 1 minute explanation of you and what you do. Networking can be more effective if you tell a story. For example instead of saying “I can assist you with XYZ” instead try “when I was assisting this customer with this problem we were able to do ________ which resulted in _________.” This can be much more effective.
Don’t Leave Networking to Chance
Know who you are and who your target market is. Create a list of the type of people you are targeting. This will allow you to let others know your ideal clients so they can make appropriate referrals. Don’t overlook someone that does the same job as you. If you are both in design for instance… you may learn something new from that person or find you have complimentary strength to build a partnership.
Sharing information will go a long way toward building your credibility – so don’t be afraid to share a website, article, report or phone number.