I’ve been networking for 9 years now and there’s one thing that remains true to this day – networking is better with friends
If I think back to the very 1st networking meeting I went to, it was 4N Altrincham at the George & Dragon
I’d worked in Rock & Roll for many years and networking was something that wasn’t really called networking and simply meant having a beer at the back of the Night & Day Cafe
Networking was something “the suits” did and it felt alien to me, but a neighbour suggested I went as she was attending the same meeting for the very 1st time
I haven’t looked back and this world of networking really just means chatting to new people and getting to know people. And I still get to chat music, restaurants and sports as much as I do real business
It’s not that much different from chatting to someone new in the pub on a Friday night except at one point the new people you’ve met say I really need your help and they pay you for it. And you do the same as well because networking isn’t just about selling stuff – it’s about finding partners and suppliers that can help your business grow as well.
Long term your network become your friends as well. People you can turn to
Regardless of your business type – if you’ve never networked make it your resolution to do this year
If you are a serial networker – help your local event grow
Bring a friend from the following list
- Potential Client
- Startup Business
- Awol Networking Buddy (i.e someone you used to network with that you haven’t seen in months / years)
- Business Neighbour
- Social Media Contact
- Family Member
There are huge benefits to bringing a friend to a networking event
- You know someone before you’ve walked in the room
- The person you invite will thank you for it
- You’ll get double the exposure – trust me, one question that is always asked at networking is “how did you find out about the event”
- You’ll get double the referrals – another champion in your corner
- Their business grows = your business grows
There’s a saying in networking – it’s called Givers Gain
The more you give, the more you gain
You recommend restaurants, films, books and new bands to friends all the time
Why not take the logical step in business and recommend a friend comes along to your next networking meeting?
Altrincham HQ are celebrating 10 years this year and we’re running 10 events this year – join us at our next event. All the details are on Facebook
My other local networking group is SUBS Altrincham – come say hello
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Alex McCann is owner of Altrincham HQ – a social media management and training company based in Altrincham, Cheshire that has worked with 100s of local business developing their social media strategy. Alex has 350+ LinkedIn testimonials and is ranked number 1 for Social Media Marketing in the UK via independent customer reviews on Freeindex.