Steps to Offline Networking Success

The second in the pair of articles on Networking Success, this article will cover the basic steps in offline networking success. Offline networking is faster than online networking, but takes more from you in some ways. This list does not need to be completed all at once, in fact, some tasks are periodic. If your time is lmited, then work through the list a little at a time.

  1. Choose an offline venue – this may be an ongoing organization, or a one time event. A future article will go into this in more detail.
  2. Sign up, register, or join. Select what you can realistically afford – offline, a little money will get results, and more money will get more results. This means you can select a lower cost option – half size booth, limited membership, etc, and still gain from it while staying within your budget.
  3. Get to know the organizers – do this in an unselfish manner, offering to help, or just introducing yourself to them.
  4. Prepare good marketing materials – this is especially important for events. Print business cards, brochures if appropriate, get promos if you can afford them (choose wisely). Be prepared at all times when networking opportunities present, so that you can leave someone with something to remember you by.
  5. Get to know others around you – in a group, get to know the members. At an event, get to know the other vendors.
  6. Learn about what the venue offers. Take the time to invest in gaining the benefits. Go to meetings, work the events, put out your brochures, etc. Make the effort to USE the resources offered.
  7. Step outside your comfort zone, a little at a time. There is no need to do it all at once, just stretch a little each time. It gets easier with practice.
  8. Find ways to help people. Helpful people get more business.
  9. Remember, your goal is to build personal relationships that can help you succeed. Relationships come first, both for customers, and associates.

Assemble good resources, and choose good outlets, and it becomes more effective. It still takes time, but you’ll see results after you give it a sincere effort. Be willing to show up – and keep showing up. Set aside the time for regular appearances, and the benefits will come.

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