Entering a room full of people can be daunting and finding the right people can be a real challenge but, engaging them when you do, is perhaps the hardest of all.
So here are 3 things you can do that will make you more successful when attending networking events.
1. Ask for the attendee list.
These days most organisers will send it over if you request it; some send it as a matter of course anyway.
This enables you to research the attendees and decide who you want to meet.
2. Ask for an introduction.
Very often the event organisers have little to do after the event has begun and are delighted to help if they can. Ask them to introduce you.
Just say “I wonder if you could help me. I’d like to speak with <<?>> but don’t know what they look like. Could you introduce me please?”
They will or they won’t. It’s a great help if they will but even if they won’t, you can’t be worse off.
3. Have a “reason to engage”
This is the one most people don’t do and yet it’s the most powerful of the 3.
Have in your mind a social event, an upcoming webinar or seminar or some research you’ve done and written into a white paper.
Engage your target in conversation and steer the conversation round to your reason to engage. They bite, you win!
I did this at a recent luncheon I attended and got 3 people I was interested in to attend a webinar we were running on self-produced business videos.
Key Message: Don’t try too hard to sell at networking events. Instead focus on adding real value, preferably in an interactive way like a seminar or webinar.