If truth be told, business networking is an extremely valuable way to develop your knowledge, gain knowledge from the success of others, get new clients and tell others about your business.
Many successful entrepreneurs got to where they are now because of the help they got from others along the way. A strong professional network enables you attain goals that you’d never achieve on your own. Solutions to apparently unfeasible issues, to word-of-mouth recommendation that goes a long was in growing your customer base, business networking is unarguable the best tool.
Business networking is the most effective technique to create referrals and build a sustainable and successful business. Referrals attained networking are mostly experts of the industry and in most cases even pre-qualified.
Following up on these referrals/leads and turning them into clients makes your business goals easier to achieve. Leads from networking are often much resourceful than those forms of marketing. Growth in business from networking is the chief benefit, however, there are many more as well.
Here are 6 different benefits for entrepreneurs of getting involved in networking:
Raising your Profile
The most rewarding benefit of networking is being visible and getting noticed. It is important to attend business and social events regularly as that make your face known. One great way is to participate in advisory committees, expos and conferences. Put in the time and energy to make it happen through your constant and concerted efforts.
Your presence and visibility is likely to get you more leads and referrals as your face and name will pop up in the heads of fellow businessmen when they need the product or service you offer.
Offer your Help First
Often we go to a networking event to seek immediate answers of our problems or challenges from others. That’s not the smart way to go about it. It is better to ask questions and find out how you can add value to others challenges, instead of the other way around. Be sure of what you can bring to the table, and proactively share tips to be helpful. Once you start extending help, it's much more likely to be reciprocated.
In business more than ‘WHAT’ it is ‘WHO’ you know that matters. For creating a truly successful business, you must have a great resource of appropriate connections in your set of connections that can be explored when needed.
Networking ensures and establishes a great foundation of connections, and unquestionably opens the room to connect with highly influential people that otherwise would be difficult for you to find or interact with.
It’s not just your direct contacts either – they will have a prior network which you can benefit from as well.
Become a Resource on Social Media
Using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn is a great way to network for entrepreneurs. Go ahead to comment on and engage with appropriate industry content to build trust among fellow followers. This also help you generate inbound networking — exchanges will help others find and reach out to you. Eventually you will need to spend less time having to actively seek more contacts.
Do Some Basic Press Outreach
A significant element of networking as an entrepreneur is to make relationships with local media. These people can help your business by narrating your story on a larger scale. Read the local city ... dailies and watch the local bulletins. This will keep you updated about your community, and help you identify the reporters who will take interest in your business news. Once you have created a contact list of media personnel, send emails introducing yourself and appreciating their work. Once it is time for you to share your business news, the established familiarity will be extremely gainful.
An enthused group of entrepreneurs engenders abundance of opportunities! Prospects like joint ventures, client leads, partnerships, speaking and writing opportunities, business or asset sales - the list is exhaustive, and opportunities endless.
However, you must be aware of the right opportunities and not jump into every opportunity that comes your way. The opportunities that you avail should be in line with your business, or you might end up spinning your wheels pursuing opportunities while getting nowhere.
Business networking has the potential to benefit your business in unthinkable ways. Go ahead and give it a shot.