Networking has always been the best way to find a job, get recommendations, and increase the buzz about any business. Networking has been going on long before the advent of computers. The golf course, after-hours business functions, and more have always been the traditional ways in which business men and women get together to be social and get to know each other. It’s a great way to build relationships outside of the business but in a way that improves the business.
Through networking online and offline you can increase your business opportunities in many ways, such as:
* It Gets You More Referrals – A referral is considered a “hot” lead. This is someone who has already likely been sold on your business products and or services. All you have to do is provide the referral with the information they want, follow up, and close the deal.
* Builds Trust – Trust is one of the foundations of business. People are more likely to want to do business with someone they trust. Networking events give others an opportunity to see you outside of your element and in a new way. Seeing you as a human being will build the trust, as you work toward building relationships that last regardless of what they can do for you.
* Word of Mouth Skyrockets – A well-honed networker has higher word-of-mouth buzz than others because they have demonstrated, through their actions, that they are a resource to others. It doesn’t matter what you sell; if you are vocal about your business, but also helpful and provide advice freely, you’ll be the first person people think about when they need to offer someone a referral.
* Increases Career Satisfaction – When you are happier, it shows when you present your opportunity to others. If you are not happy and don’t understand why you are doing something, it shows too. By practicing presenting your ideas and business to others at networking events, online and off, you will gain confidence in your abilities and it will show through.
* Provides a Great Market Education – When you are more knowledgeable about your market, you will create more opportunities for yourself and your business. Networking with peers is great for referrals and comrades, but networking with your audience also provides an education in your market that you cannot get any other way, if you’re listening.
* Improves Communication Abilities – The more you network with others, the better you’ll get at communicating with others. The better you are at communicating, the more people will like and trust you. The more people like and trust you, the more business you will get.
* Forces You to Be Ready – Just the act of going to a networking event forces you out of your comfort zone and makes you study your business, your audience, and understand what type of education you need to succeed. It gets you outside of your bubble in a way that nothing else can.
* Gives You the Ability to Test Prior to Production – When you network with honest people, especially your peers, you can try out ideas before putting them into practice. You can see what their reaction is before you waste too much time and money.
Networking is one of the best ways to increase opportunities for you and your business. It always has been how work got done, and always will be. Isn’t it time you networked?