One of our members at The Janitorial Store offered the following advice about networking:
The 5 biggest mistakes that are made at networking events:
- Trying to promote and state your business solutions to everyone at the event. Listen to what others are saying and find those whom you can help.
- Having nothing planned to say (work on your elevator speech).
- Treating the event like a social event (it is business!).
- Showing up late for the event.
- Passing out business cards to everyone you meet, instead of to only those who ask for them.
If you can bring a friend, introduce them and their business & solutions to others (and they can do the same for you); don't hang out at the snack table, and listen more than you speak. Try to find people who need to be connected to others.
It always helps to get testimonials, and if the person giving the testimonial is attending the same event, all the better for you! Many professionals suggest that these 3rd party endorsements are the best form of advertising.