8 Smart Tips for Amazing Networking Success!

One of the most effective ways to get yourself out there in the world is to network! We must get away from the computer and put ourselves out there in front of people. It is an amazing way to meet new people and for others to get to know who we really are. And if you are in business, hopefully you will gain lots of new clients!  But I have heard so many people say that the networking events they are attending are just not working for them. There is a frustration level out there by many about how much time it takes to get out there to network, the financial cost to be part of networking groups and events and then not receive any return on investment.  

I hear you! With any sort of networking events, the people that are attending need to have the right intentions for being there. Networking needs to be about authentically connecting and developing relationships! When you do that, those that you meet are not just people with business cards. It’s going beyond the small talk. It’s about really wanting to get to know other people. It’s about getting the ‘like, trust and respect factor’ before doing business together and that’s just smart business! Check out these ways that I network that have effectively worked for me. Hopefully some of my tips will resonate with you and bring your networking to a whole new level of success!

 8 ‘Smart’ Tips for Amazing Networking Success!

  1. Be Approachable – When attending functions, be approachable! What does that mean specifically? Don’t have your head buried in your cellphone texting and not being really present. Put the phone away, look friendly and make eye contact with people to capture their initial attention.
  2. Be a Great Listener – When meeting someone at a networking event, do you automatically break into your elevator speech of what you do? I positively challenge you to stop doing that. Focus in on that other person you are meeting. First be really interested in what the other person has to say. Let them know you care about what they have to say. For quality people, they will appreciate that and want to reciprocate.
  3. Don’t Get Lost In A Crowd of People – If you want to stand out at an event, don’t get lost in the crowd of people. If there is a large group of people, interact with them, but move out to an area where you can still be seen and able to have meaningful conversations. Connections
  4. Limit the Amount of Time Talking With One Person – During a networking event, be respectful of everyone you are talking with, but also remember your goal is trying to make at least a few meaningful connections. Don’t let one person take up your entire evening. After having a meaningful conversation, politely move forward on connecting with a few other people.
  5. Talk About a Common Interest – When talking with someone that you meet at a business event, try to make the conversation a little personal. You want to be memorable. What do I mean by that? People tend to remember people by some sort of discussion that resonated with them. The conversation could be about sports, health or fitness or maybe about kids. It’s awesome to have something in that conversation that someone could easily remember.
  6. Write Down a Few Notes – You know how it is when you leave an event and you can’t remember important details of what someone said to you! Do what you can to jot a few notes down on the back of a person’s business card so you will keep details of that connection fresh on your mind.
  7. Do Effective Follow-up – After an event, do you sometimes not connect with a person that was a great contact? Do awesome follow-up. Send a really cool note and if it’s someone you truly want to get to know better, invite that person out for a cup of coffee or lunch. Again, networking is about authentically keeping that connection going.
  8. Keep Connected – When you meet really awesome people at an event, you may not need their services at the time and they may not need yours. However,  that connection might be very important in the future. Keep connected. Send a note once in a while to see how they’re doing. Send an article that might interest them. Keep the connection going!

Just like many  things in life, effective networking takes time. But the tips I have outlined above is for long term connections, not just trying to get a quick acquaintance.

What are some of the tips above that most resonate with you that you already do or are going to start doing during your next networking event? What are some other tips you have to effectively network? I’d love to hear from you!

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Cynthia Bazin is absolutely passionate about YOUR success and happiness. If you are ready and committed to change your life and take charge of your life, contact Cynthia today to start a conversation! She wants to be your mentor!  She will get you laser-focused on the important things in life! Cynthia@smartchic.me  |  https://smartchic.me

Also, be part of Cynthia’s circle. The SmartChic Inner Circle! 365 days of Mentoring, Support, Advice, Networking and an amazing community! https://smartchic.me/inner-circle

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2016-11-11T11:55:57+00:00By |Inspirational Articles|24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Dayanna Valenciano-Luna January 15, 2015 at 2:45 pm - Reply

    Networking is one of today’s greatest tools to truly connect with meaningful individuals. And although is hard sometimes to break loose from our shell and open up to others it is truly rewarding when you feel you’ve reach out of our comfort zone and connect, truly connect with the world.

    I’ve had my fare share of networking events, and it always feel intimidating at first but once I start the conversations it amazed me how much I’ve learned from others!

    Great article Cynthia as always!! 🙂

    • SmartChic January 16, 2015 at 6:03 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much Dayanna for your comments. Yes, I can definitely see how people can find networking a little intimidating at first. The key is really to just listen to the other person and find some sort of common ground among each other then communication can flow that much easier. Thanks for always being so supportive. Have a great day!

  2. Jane January 15, 2015 at 2:46 pm - Reply

    Great advice, Cynthia! I am often invited to networking lunches. I’ve never tried the notes on the back of a business card. It sounds like a great idea. I am especially partial to #7 and #8. If you weren’t doing that, I wouldn’t be doing that, and look at all the really positive people I would miss out on getting to know.

    • SmartChic January 16, 2015 at 6:05 pm - Reply

      Thank you Jane for your comments. Someone told me about putting notes on the back of a business card a while back and I’ve been doing it ever since and it works great! You always want to try to remember the details of that awesome connection.

  3. Stephanie January 15, 2015 at 3:02 pm - Reply

    What a great reminder! It’s so easy to stay trapped behind our desk and computer all day. Getting out and being social face-to-face can be so refreshing and rewarding.

    • SmartChic January 16, 2015 at 6:07 pm - Reply

      Thanks so much Stephanie for the comments! Yes it can be easy to get comfortable behind our computers. But there is nothing like face to face conversation! I look forward to doing some networking events with you this year!

  4. Tal Shnall January 15, 2015 at 3:03 pm - Reply

    Cynthia! great advice! if anyone is truly lived this, it would be you my friend! You truly know how to build relationships and add value to others. Networking is no longer about business cards. It’s about growing and developing professional relationships! I like these tips alot. Keep it up Smart Chic! You Rock!!!

    • SmartChic January 16, 2015 at 6:09 pm - Reply

      Tal, thank you so much for your comments. You my friend are also EXCELLENT at building connections, which is the key to effective networking. Networking is definitely not about swapping business cards. It is about building awesome professional relationships. Thanks for always being awesome!

  5. Nicole January 15, 2015 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    That is something that I need to get back into. Thank you for the great reminder.
    It is intimidating at first but love all the great tips you give in this article. Can’t wait to try #3, #4 and #5. Another amazing ‘SmartChic’ tips. 🙂

    • SmartChic January 16, 2015 at 6:12 pm - Reply

      Thank you Nicole for the awesome shout out and comments. That is great that you have found my tips helpful. These are great for both face-to-face networking and when meeting people on your HOA’s online. The key is to develop lasting authentic connections. I appreciate you my friend.

  6. Hi Cynthia,
    I LOVE your #1 and #2. Approachable starts it all and #2 is the way to connect and build trust. I would add that listening doesn’t always mean complete silence. Some people find it easier to interact with people who interact with them. If the connection is dynamically positive with give and take, don’t silence yourself.

    Kudos … great post.
    Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

  7. Tony Adams January 15, 2015 at 7:09 pm - Reply

    Hi Cynthia,
    I’ve always felt anxious about attending formal networking events and instead, have used other random occurrences (business meetings, seminars, training sessions etc.) as opportunities to build connections.
    So I confess that I approached your list from that perspective.

    What really interest me is that your list resonates, regardless of the event. Wherever we may be, whoever the audience, these 8 tips still hold true.

    How exciting! No, really…! So many people put their blinkers on when we mention the term “networking” because they think of something like “speed dating with business cards”. In fact, your tips are universal and mean that we can get better networking outcomes and build relationships from all those other networking opportunities that pop up during our day.

    BTW my favourites are #2 and #3 🙂

  8. Giovanni Gaudelli January 15, 2015 at 8:46 pm - Reply

    You’re right Cynthia we must get out there in the “real” world and connect with people. These are all great tips, but I particularly like #2, #5 and #7. By listening we can more easily identify common interests which lead to more meaningful conversations which in turn will make it more compelling for both parties to want to keep in touch. I can also relate to #8. The Universe works in mysterious ways and is full of surprises. You never know when and where the next opportunity is going to come from! Awesome advice, Cynthia! Thank you! 🙂

  9. Terri B January 15, 2015 at 9:14 pm - Reply

    Great advice Cynthia! Networking can be a vital tool for success in many businesses. It’s so easy to get caught up in work mode and forget networking with others can energize and motivate ua. Great post!

  10. Marianne January 16, 2015 at 3:34 am - Reply

    Wonderful information Cynthia! Being a good listener is hugely important, too many people just have an agenda and people can pick that up a mile off. Good listening is a skill and is very fulfilling anyway, from a human connection point of view, networking or not…
    Great article as usual!

  11. Chantal January 16, 2015 at 5:54 am - Reply

    Great tips Cynthia! I would also add when you are speaking with someone, give them your undivided attention. Don’t scan the room looking for someone ‘better’ to be speaking with. It can also be helpful to have a few ice-breaker questions ready. i.e. What was the last movie you saw? If you are visiting a new city ask about places to see or eat.

  12. Terri Klass January 16, 2015 at 6:27 am - Reply

    Networking is a really tough thing to do for many of us. I love your tips, especially #7. The follow-up is what separates the real professionals from others. I find that I will look up people’s twitter and facebook and google plus accounts to connect on line. Even if we are nervous, we need to keep the follow-up going.

    Thanks Cyndy!

  13. Deb Scott January 16, 2015 at 6:51 am - Reply

    I love getting your articles in my inbox and read them as quickly as possible because I know they are always filled with awesome ideas as you walk your talk! 🙂

  14. Tracy Cotton January 16, 2015 at 10:41 am - Reply

    I love this! I also really agree with Chantal’s comment about keeping focus on one person at a time. If I am at a networking event I also try to introduce people – even people I have just met. Which also helps because it helps me to circulate when I can move away from two people who are now talking that I connected!

    A couple more tips on #7 and #8 – follow up IMMEDIATELY. Don’t let days go by before you send a note, an email or call. Also go ahead and track them down on social media – that’s a great way to keep interacting even if you aren’t able to meet right away. (of course don’t be stalker-esque but let them know you like to use social media to stay in touch) Also “give” something to someone you are particularly interested in becoming more connected. For instance send them an email with a link to an article you think would help them or make sure and read their blogs, retweet them etc. Again you don’t have to be like a fly hovering but staying in their radar this way will help strengthen the connections.

    As always Cynthia you are right on time with your advice!

  15. Sean Mahon January 16, 2015 at 11:05 am - Reply

    Hi Cynthia,! A great post as usual and also some excellent comments and responses in replywhich I really think ‘nail it’. As you rightly say the success of ANY form of networking, whether it be at a formal networking event, or the more informal everyday type of networking that Tony Adams talks about, is very much based on authenticity of intent in my view. But even with the most authentic of intents it’s also vital to follow up and keep connected exactly as you suggest above. I would also urge those that aren’t making the most of targeted social media activity to also consider developing an appropriate strategy for their chosen social media platform(s) to further aid networking opportunities well beyond the boundaries of their immediate geographical location. I personally use Google Hangouts a lot for this very purpose and have been privileged to develop many excellent contacts in different countries by following your 8 ‘Smart Tips’ and applying them to social media just as I would at a networking event. Thanks for a useful and thought-provoking post!

  16. Debbie January 16, 2015 at 8:38 pm - Reply

    Hi Cynthia!

    Wonderful post. I can relate to all eight tips. I think of the eight, I most resonate with #2. Being a great listener is key to building rapport and relationships. After all, the most successful networker isn’t the one that leaves the even with the most cards, but the one that leaves with the most meaningful connections that blossom into a long-term relationships. A person may not be a potential client, but they could end up being a wonderful connector and resource. The way to find out is by listening and finding common interests. Of course you find #5 by listening and paying attention to the conversation.

    You’re right, even the best connection requires 6, 7, & 8 to develop into a professional relationship. It’s about following up, building and maintaining a relationship that over the long term can become mutually beneficial.

    I think your tips are equally effective whether applied to actual in person networking events or online as well. But you’re so right, we do need to step away from the computer more and meet people in real life. After all, it is people that make decision and purchases. And the people that we surround ourselves with that add meaning to our lives, both personally and in business!

  17. Jandis Price January 17, 2015 at 6:40 pm - Reply

    Kudos to My Favorite Smart Chic on another AWESOME Post! Nice List of Networking Tips! I try to do #7, but could do a better job at all of them. #8 really resonated most with me and reminded me to make staying connected a priority.

    Thanks for All You Do to Bring Out The BEST in Us! <3

  18. Michelle Glover January 18, 2015 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    Love this article, Cynthia!! Great tips! Thanks for sharing. May I share this one on BWE?:))

  19. Franca Adamus January 19, 2015 at 10:09 am - Reply

    Cynthia, love your blog as always! Very helpful Smart Tips! I will definitely start doing #4 and #8.
    Thank you so much for sharing this with us and have a FAB week!

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