How to build lasting relationships with new networking connections
You’ve been to some events, met some new peers, and connected with potential clients. And you feel like you’ve made a great first impression. Now the real work starts, because to truly make the most out of these events, you have to cultivate these relationships. Here’s how to make sure you’re following through:
1. Add them on social
After the event—or even during it—remind people who you are by adding them to your social networks. Emily is a fan of connecting on multiple channels, not just the ones widely viewed as “professional networks”. For example, she finds Facebook and Instagram are great platforms to grow connections casually.
2. Reach out
When you follow up with new connections, make sure you provide them with some context. Sometimes it’s helpful to jog their memory. “I will connect with them on LinkedIn by sending them a message that reminds them of where we met,” says Glenn. “I make sure I’ve made enough notes about the people I’ve met during and after the event, so that I’ve retained their information and can relate it back to myself and them."
3. Connect the dots
Although everyone is looking to build their business, networking events can offer much more than that. The relationships you build can be important for both personal and professional growth. Santiago has started a practice of connecting people he’s connected with. “We’re investing a lot of time in creating multidisciplinary work groups or Zoom calls where we can catch up and cross-connect the people we know from different sources,” he says. “It’s always fun, and it creates unexpected synergies.”
While some like it better than others, there’s no question: networking is a necessary part of building your business and your brand. With these helpful tips and tricks in mind, you’ll be sure to make the most of it.