Get the most out of your networking events with these top tips. Our Buzz events are designed to be easy and relaxed with no booking, no membership and no scary speeches. However, if you’re new to networking you might feel better if you know a little more about what to expect.
What to bring with you
The bare minimum is needed for Buzz networking, though some other groups require a little more preparation and paraphernalia.
Business cards or leaflets.
A pen – just in case you need to make a note on someone’s card.
Your diary – to book in a meeting if necessary.
Smile – all important. It’ll relax you and those around you. Remember networking is FUN!
Not that you need to prepare yourself too much, but having a few conversation starters and questions up your sleeve can help you feel a little bit more ready for an event and reduce any nerves you’re feeling.
Questions are a great way to start a conversation. You can change these to suit your style a little more.
Have you been here before?
How do you find this event?
Do you do a lot of networking?
So what do you do?
Something to think about is how you’re going to answer those questions yourself. Especially “What do you do?” If you’ve got a little time before the meeting, thinking about an elevator pitch might be a good start. Read our blog on how to create yours here
Parking: Just so you’re not stressing on the way to the event, look up the best place to park and make sure you’ve got the correct times and address.
Paying on the door: Also, if there is a fee for attending, then try to bring the correct change. A lot of groups are unable to take card payments as that increases the costs to customers, so cash is generally preferable.
In the meeting
Positive attitude: Remember that networking is supposed to be fun and people don’t just go to events to find new business – they also attend in order to keep up with local knowledge, expand their contact base and develop existing relationships, so a positive, friendly attitude is important to make a great first impression. You don’t need to have “the gift of the gab” or be the life and soul of the party to do well at networking. In fact, because of the one to one / one to a couple of people nature of business events, you might find them more comfortable if you’re a little shy.
At our Buzz events, we always make sure you’re introduced to a couple of nice people so no one is walking into a room full of strangers and left trying to strike up a conversation.
If it’s your first ever networking event do tell the organiser – they’ll make sure they introduce you to some great people who will take extra care of you!
Set a goal: A good goal to have is to have at least 3 or 4 conversations with new people and to aim to make 2 one to ones outside of the meeting.
A one to one is basically a coffee and a chat with someone who you might be able to share contacts with or might possibly be able to refer business to you.
While networking can seem a little daunting when you first start out, you should find them really useful for making new contacts and discovering more potential business.
All our upcoming events are listed here and Google is a great place to find other events near you.