Building your virtual assistant business with networking is important, but in order to get the maximum benefit of networking, you need to do it right.
We’ve created a quick checklist for Dos & Don’t’s at networking events so that you can network with ease & confidence.
- Practice your thirty-second elevator pitch so you can get all the points out that you need to express to people in just thirty seconds. It should be second nature, so when you meet people on the fly you can tell them what you’re all about without feeling like you need to prepare to recite an essay. VA TOP TIP: Your 30-second pitch should include who you are, what you do & who you help!
- Social media is great, but so are face-to-face meetings. When your online contacts are in the area, plan time to meet face to face. Attend regular meet-ups in your area as well. Those face-to-face meetings are great for making connections. To see what’s happening in your local area go to www.meetup.com.
- Introduce yourself & when the other person tells you their name, repeat it. This helps the name stick in your mind.
- Always have your business cards handy. You really never know when you’re going to meet someone, so be sure you carry business cards with you at all times…yes even to the grocery store!
- If you make a promise, then be sure that you follow through on it. Follow up with the people that you meet. This is going to help you build & grow those relationships. Remember it’s all about nurturing.
- Keep in touch. Have regular meetings with your network, and be sure to offer them your assistance when asking for their help on something. If you’re having an event, then invite the people in your network too. Successful relationships are about giving more than you take.
- Ask for help. If you’re looking to expand your business, then you need people to help you get the word out. Make sure you ask your network to help you out with spreading the word on whatever you’re working on or whatever you need help with.
- Set goals. Having measurable goals in your networking will help keep you on track and get your business where you want it to be on a specific timeline.
- Be grateful. Saying thank you to your contacts will go a long way in showing your appreciation for what they have done for you.
- Find ways to give back to your network. This is a great way to show appreciation, but it also builds those relationships even stronger when you can help out those who have helped you. No one wants to feel used, so thatís why itís so important to give back.
- Hard sell. If it’s the first time meeting someone, then you should not do a hard sell on your product or service. Your main focus should be making the contact, getting to know the person and sharing your info.
- Steal the show by time talking about yourself. You should be asking questions to get to know them rather than telling them all about you. If you show interest in the other person, then they will be more interested in you too. Listen to hear. VA TOP TIP: It’s ok to make little notes when a person is telling you about them. No one expects you to memorize everyone’s story off by heart.
- Drink too much. Give yourself a two-drink maximum when you’re networking. It will make sure that you are coherent when you talk, and that you don’t say anything you later wish you hadn’t.
Other blog posts you will enjoy:
- 5 Ways To Network Locally As A VA
- Common Mistakes To Avoid When Networking On Social Media
- 10 Steps To Smart Networking That Will Get You Visible
What networking advice do you have for local events, leave a comment below so that other VA’s can learn from you?