As a marketing specialist, I love networking and making connections and it’s something every entrepreneur and business owner needs to do well. There is so much to share with you on the subject but let’s start off with one of the basics.
Firstly, you need a kick-ass networking list, often that is created over time but you have to start somewhere. So treat yourself to a great pad or iPad and write at the top, on a clean sheet or screen, in big letters MY NETWORKING LIST. Now we are ready to get active.
Write down everyone you know and to make it easier categorise people into groups e.g. school, university, first job, family, co-workers from that dreadful place I used to work at where we slogged our guts for hours.
Take a few days to do this as your brain starts to whir up into action and get into the zone of remembering little Angela from pre-school
Once you have exhausted your list categorise your nearest and dearest in groups. Kathy McAfee in her book Networking Ahead calls this the Value Chain.
Awesome people you know well who could invest in your services or buy your products. Add into this category family and friends as well as those who have worked with you like ex-colleagues and suppliers.
Fabulous people you know well, will speak well of you and can connect you to other people but do not want to purchase your services. Don’t you just love this group?
Great people you have met once or a few times but at playtors this stage you are unable to decide whether they are someone who can and wants to purchase your services/products.
Finally, people you would like to have in your awesome network but you do not know.
Now that you have your lists it is time to strip out the duds. Yep they’re the ones that cannot help you. Of course this doesn’t mean you are not going to interact with those people but you are just recognising that you should be spending minimal time with them trying to progress your networking goals through them.
Once you have your categories you can decide how best engage with each group.
Look out for my next post on tips for engagement.
Have a great day everyone and if you are watching or taking part in the Olympics – Go TEAM GB!!!!