What is Networking?
Networking is an essential activity for most businesses. Essentially, networking is word of mouth; the most powerful marketing tool at our disposal. But it isn’t a quick fix...it is an exchange of information - ideally leading to referrals. Before we let you loose on our valuable clients and contacts, we need to feel reassured that you are trustworthy and offer credible expertise or products.
Face-to-face or Online Networking?
Online networking can offer speed, wide geographical coverage and flexibility – all big benefits. Face-to-Face has a huge advantage: rapport. The famous sales expression “people buy from people first” is true. It is difficult to convey your full enthusiasm in 140 characters.
Which Networking Group is for me?
Time, cost, location and format are important but there is one issue which divides us every time. Does the size of the group matter? Many people think that a large group is the answer. Not always. How many ‘useful’ conversations will you have during a meeting? Three? Four?
The reality is that a smaller group can offer powerful benefits:
- Stronger bonds. You’ll get to know people – and their businesses – quickly rather than simply collecting business cards
- Quality leads. Members genuinely want to help when they can instead of feeling under pressure to find opportunities.
- Support. With rapport comes a sharing of help and advice based upon experience.
- Honesty. There is generally less bluster and bravado in a smaller group. People are more open and informative.
Each networking group has its advantages, according to your own style. Please don’t fall into the trap of thinking that bigger is better.
Look for strong relationships plus the rapport of the group. Remember – what you get out of any networking channel depends upon what you put into it.
Networking in Herts or Beds?
We recommend you try SG1 Business Club in Stevenage.
Discover for yourself how relaxed and powerful a small group can be… especially one which is completely independent and ‘not for profit’.
If you would like advice about which groups would work for you or help with managing your online networking, please contacts us.