Written by Jing Yi Gao on April 18, 2017
If you haven’t had a chance, take a look at Episode 1 to catch up with The Savage Networker series.
How often have you spent an extreme amount of time and effort networking only to drop the ball completely when it comes to following up? You aren’t alone, it’s actually the norm. If you want to be a savage networker, you must master all aspects of networking. This includes the most important part, following up. You have to create relationships with the people you have synergy with at an event. Follow these 5 steps and you will set the tone for massive growth in your business.
The first step actually begins while you are actively networking. When you meet someone who you know you can collaborate with in the future, take a few moments after you have connected to make a note about the discussion that took place. Choose keywords that will prompt you to remember the most important talking points that will be useful in future discussions.
Within 48 hours of the event conclusion, send emails to everyone you created notes for. Let them know how awesome it was connecting with them and that you really enjoyed the conversation you struck up. This is where the notes that you created are important. You can reference them to highlight specific topics that came up between the two of you. Add a few new points to carry the conversation forward and entice the desire for more dialogue. In addition, this is where you begin to add value to the relationship by mentioning a connection that may be useful or providing some information that you know would be valuable to them. The bottom line is simple. You are using this opportunity to take a huge step forward to building a strong and lasting relationship with your new connections.
Here in Socio, we love using tools that make our lives easier. I use Contactually as my personal CRM system and it helps a lot! CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management, so by definition, a CRM is a platform that helps you manage your relationships with everyone in your network. Keeping in touch with people you have met is critical! Using these cutting-edge technologies and tools, you can automate the follow-up process and make sure that you never miss an opportunity again. Here is a list of personal CRMs that we like!
The most important aspect of follow up is to create a win-win scenario for the relationships you are building. All good relationships require rapport, trust, patience, and commitment. A great way to initiate trust in the beginning is by consistently being reliable and showing respect. This means that you follow up within 24 to 48 hours on all inquiries, provide referrals that can actually lead to business, and keep every commitment that you make.
When the time is appropriate, invite your new colleague to meet face to face. This can be as simple as getting together over coffee. However, if you want to truly follow up like a savage networker, think about the passions and interests that your new contact has and how you can cater to them. Plan a visit to a museum, golf outing, or a day at the racetrack, based on what you have learned that your connection enjoys. This will show them that you truly value the relationship and are willing to go the extra mile to make it work.
It is true that networking effectively is a dance, much like the tango. You want to show strength and be in control, yet always aware of your partner’s presence and position yourself to support and showcase them to the best of your ability. A true networker knows that the value in adding new people to your network is not just making the next sale, but building a long term relationship that takes both parties to the next level.
To succeed in your networking effort you have to step up your game and bring huge value to your connections. You nail these 5 steps and you’ll see your business grow by leaps and bounds.
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