1. Perfect your elevator pitch! ~ You have 60 seconds to make a lasting impression and one that leaves them wanting to know more. Having your elevator pitch ready to go, makes all the difference in the world. Remember, this is information that you would share with a perfect stranger, when you first meet them. Keep it short, concise and pique their interest to want to know more and ask questions.
2. Join a referral group ~ Exclusive referral networking groups give you the opportunity to make true connection with build deep relationships. It’s like having a best friend in business and hiring a team or outside sales force to represent you in the community. These are the people we call on when we need help or a connection.
3. Be intentional with open networking events ~ When going to an open networking event, don’t just throw around as many business cards as you can and hope to get business. Target 5 quality contacts and connections to start a conversation. Then take it to the next step by following up and getting together at another time.
4. Build Relationships ~ People do business with who they know, like, and trust. This is a proven fact. We all refer to a great restaurant or the amazing hair stylist. Building those relationships by getting to know each other is crucial in trusting to refer business, you want to be sure your referral is well taken care of. Take the time to get to know each and find out what a good referral would be for each other, otherwise you could be sending each other the wrong clients.
5. Appearance does matter ~ We’ve all heard the saying, “Dress for the position you want, not the one you have.” There are 11 common assumptions most people make within the first 30-seconds of meeting someone and 93% of first impressions are made in the first 4 minutes; 7% from verbal interactions, 38% from your tone of voice and 55% from your appearance. Making a good first impression is so important, if you want to be taken seriously.
6. Listen ~ You’ve heard the saying, “You have two ears and one mouth.” Use them proportionately. Don’t hijack the conversation. The conversation should not be all about you and what you want. It should almost be a mini interview. Show true genuine interest in OTHERS and find out how you can help them in business. They will certainly return the favor!