Elevate Your Business Networking Game with This Helpful Advice

Networking will always be one of the most valuable tools for business success regardless if you’re a solo freelancer or an international corporation. The more people you know, the more opportunities you’ll have available to you, and that’s why it’s vital that you learn to up your networking game as early as possible to take advantage of those chances.

However, mastering the art of networking is no easy feat. While digital platforms and social media have revolutionized the way we connect with others, there’s something still so impactful and meaningful when it comes to face-to-face interactions. So much so that they’re probably the best way to open up new opportunities and meet new business contacts.

Whether you’re planning to attend a business event soon or are making an appearance at a trade show, here’s some helpful advice to up your networking game.

Dress to impress

Remember you’re going to be meeting other people in person. You’re not online talking through your display picture anymore! That means you need to look great and have good hygiene so that you’re not putting people off interacting with you. You have to look confident if you want people to remember you, so renting out a suit or getting into a nice dress is really worth the investment!

Make your interactions count

Make every interaction count! Remember that it’s about building meaningful relationships as much as it is about seeking new opportunities. Approach new interactions with enthusiasm and authenticity, try to listen more than you speak and ask questions where you’ll gain insights from the answer. Remember that interactions like this are a two-way street as well. As much as you’re trying to gain insights and opportunities, so are the people that you talk to. So when you speak to them, make sure to offer support and value to others as well.

First impressions are important

From dressing nice to having a luxury business card to offer, it’s important to focus on making a good first impression. The immediate impact and professionalism from those interactions will form the foundation of how people see and view you. It helps to build trust, influences their future decision-making, and also paves the way for future interactions. Making yourself memorable will lead to better future interactions and follow-ups after the event has concluded. Staying in the minds of others is a powerful way to build trust and it’ll lead to better opportunities in the future.

Follow up with your interactions

Interactions won’t lead to anything if you don’t follow up on them. Networking continues long after the event has concluded, so make sure to follow up with your new contacts. Express your gratitude, reinforce your connection, and personalize your messages to show that you’re genuinely interested in keeping in touch. Again, remember that these types of interactions are a two-way street, so you’ll want to provide value back to those people as they provide you value. This is especially important as a freelancer because it can help you secure future clients and contracts, especially if you showcase what you’re capable of.