7 Tips for Effective Networking

Looking for a way to make connections, meet potential clients and find great talent? Then follow these 7 tips:

  1. Get out there. You can’t network effectively from behind your desk. Every month in the SOI newsletter, we provide a list of upcoming events in the Bay Area. If you have yet to attend one, pick an event from the list below and register today.
  2. Move out of your comfort zone. Diversify your network by attending events and joining groups outside of your industry. If you stick with your own industry exclusively, you may find more competitors than potential customers.
  3. Plan what you’ll say. This is especially important if you’re shy. Think of three key selling points about your business, and work out what you’ll say about them. Then practice.
  4. Get involved. Once you’ve found organizations you want to join, or events you want to attend, get involved, and start building relationships.
  5. Reciprocate. Remember that for networking to be effective, you need to help others in your network. Hear of a job that would be perfect for the technical writer you work with? Then make the appropriate introductions.
  6. Follow up. To build your network, you need to follow up. If you make a good connection at a networking event, contact that person the following week. If you fail to follow up, you’ll waste your time attending events.
  7. Be patient. Don’t feel disheartened if you do not land a huge client on your first attempt. Keep at it. Building business relationships takes time. But networking does pay off.