Networking – More than just selling!

One of the biggest mistakes that I see when networking is the Sales Guy that goes around the room trying to get everyone to buy his product right now, that’s not what it’s about.  I’ve talked about Networking Do’s and Don’ts in the past, and one of the points that I’d like to expand on is one of the don’ts “Sell, Sell, Sell”.

Think about it this way, if you’re a friend of someone on facebook, or following them on Twitter, whatever avenue you use, if they were to constantly be talking about their product, how awesome it is and that it’s “on sale, this week only!”, and essentially droning on and on solely about their awesome product you would tune them out pretty quick if not block them, right?  Not dissimilar to ending up on a email list when we go to buy a sweater at a local store and end up getting bombarded with 2 for 1 offers.  No one likes feeling like they’re being advertised to all the time.  Same thing in person!

If you want to get business through networking you have to think of it like a relationship, not simply another place to blast your sales message.  Would you refer someone to the insurance guy that comes up to you in a networking event droning on about how you need insurance and are you covered with this that and the other thing?  Or would you refer someone to a guy that takes the time to learn about you, perhaps meets with you for coffee, doesn’t shove his product in your face but really takes time to learn about your company and your needs before even thinking about talking insurance?  Relationships lead to trust which lead to a higher likelihood of referrals, and STRONGER referrals.

Sure, sometimes you luck out and the first time you meet someone they may be looking for your exact product or service, but most of the time you need to establish a relationship with people so they know you and trust you with either their business or their friend or business associate.  Their reputation is being put on the line when the recommend/refer someone, so they want to be able to trust who they’re referring to.

So the next time you’re networking think about that – think relationship building instead of “Sell, Sell, Sell” and who knows, maybe you’ll walk out with a connection that will refer you clients for a lifetime instead of a one contract client!

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This entry was posted by Anna Kouwenberg on Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011 at 4:46 pm and is filed under Networking. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

3 Comments

  1. Earl Thomas says:

    Hi Anna,

    I agree it is about building positive relationships. Positive creates more positive and we don’t need negative
    networking that only looks for results. Results will come in time though I know it is hard to be patient. But it is quality I am looking for and I am sure with your positive attitude you will have success.

    • Anna says:

      Hello Earl, thanks for the comment. Couldn’t agree more – we need more positive people out there! Thanks for your input and compliment!

  2. So true Anna, and you can see em coming!

    Plus when you head out to networking events and your head is in the space of building new relationships the events are so much more fun!