How to gain quality leads from networking events without being 'that guy'

How to Gain Quality Leads from Networking Events without Being ‘THAT Guy’

When you market yourself and your business at networking events, there seems to be some confusion as to how to do this.

It sounds strange but many people find it challenging, but let me share this little topic with you, because I think I can shed some light on what to do at networking-type events as a network marketer.

And, really, not just as a network marketer, but as a human being building their business, to set yourself apart and be successful with that event.

In other words, to come away from that event with some good leads and how to follow through on them, to establish new customers, and to build new relationships, and potentially new reps. So, here it is.

Networking events

First of all, what do I mean when I’m talking about networking events? Okay, networking events, if you’re not aware, your local Chamber of Commerce always has some kind of networking events going on. For example, there’s a lot of different business organizations that have open networking events, people from all kinds of different businesses or backgrounds can show up to meet other people to potentially do business with. Those are the standard kind.

Networking events, if you’re not aware, your local Chamber of Commerce always has some kind of networking events going on. For example, there’s a lot of different business organizations that have open networking events, people from all kinds of different businesses or backgrounds can show up to meet other people to potentially do business with. Those are the standard kind.

Those are the standard kind.

Another type of networking event I’m a big fan of is Meetup groups.

Now if you don’t know what Meetup is, you go to Meetup.com it’s essentially a website, where people of all kinds of different special interests can create groups that they can physically get together for activities.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be directly business related. You can find business related, marketing related, even network marketing related meetup groups, but you can also find meetup groups that have nothing to do with business but have something to do with maybe a specific topic or area of personal interest or hobby of yourself. That works, too.

I encourage that, it may be a little bit less weird, but when you’re talking about business network events, here’s the thing with those that’s kind of cool. You have to realize, that the people who are going to a business, a networking event that’s business related, they’re going there because they are looking for something, because they have a want or desire something, maybe more leads or more business.

They’re looking to improve their bottom line in some way, shape, or form, and they’re looking to meet the people who can either help them do that and potentially become a customer.

Solutions to your frustrations

Okay, so you’re dealing with a market that’s looking for solutions. They may not be looking for exactly what you have to offer, but they’re they are looking for solutions. Now when you go to any kind of a networking event, here’s what most people do and do wrong.

What most people do is, and I don’t mean just in network marketing. I mean in general. What most people do at these networking events is they go there. They hang around like a bunch of vultures, or hang around with their own little clique that they’re with, and don’t really engage with other people.

Their point of conversation is to, “How fast can I pitch you on what I do?”  Then they do their pitch. Maybe they get a business card from you or from somebody, and then they never, ever, ever follow up.

Very, very rarely does anybody ever follow up and actually make a phone call with somebody that they met at an event like this.

Lose the pitch, connect with people

Here’s how you do this and set yourself apart. You go there and your goal is to say as little as possible. What? Your goal is to go there, and ask questions, and meet people, and let them talk. When we talked in a live video not long ago about asking questions of like, “Why do you say that?

Talking about areas of interest. Truly, sincerely being interested in the other person to find out what they’re looking for, what they want, what drives them, where do their kids go to school? What kind of activities are they involved in? Get to know somebody, and you say as little as possible. “Great meeting you.”

Grab the business and leave the event. That’s right.

You don’t make your pitch at the event. You don’t try to prospect somebody at the event. That’s what all the amateurs do. You don’t do any of that. You actually show sincere interest in people. You collect as many cards as you can from your conversations.

It is essentially the art of making a connection and being the one person that cares about your clients. Not just another sales person.

Make your name known and be different

You go back home, and then in the next couple days, you start calling those people that you have met. That’s when you say, “Hey, it was great meeting you at the event. I remember we were talking. You were telling me about X, Y, Z.”

First of all, you’re setting yourself way apart from everybody else, because nobody follows up.

Second of all, it’s a much more comfortable atmosphere. Remember, at the event, that person is 100% thinking about what they’re there for in their current business, “What can they sell you?”

If you’re trying to pitch them on something, they’ve got their walls up. They’re thoughts usually are “I’m not buying. I’m selling.” Now if you call them later, at a later time, you’ve not only set yourself apart as more professional, that’s doing a correct

Now if you call them later, at a later time, you’ve not only set yourself apart as more professional, that’s doing a correct follow-up, but now, you’re controlling the conversation a little bit more to where you can ask a question, find out if they’re open. “Hey, I remember we were talking about a couple of different things.”

You may actually have in your conversation, found a real, want, need or dream that you can connect your product or your opportunity to.

I highly recommend that when you go to these kinds of events, bottom line is, don’t throw your pitch out there.

Be the person that sets themselves apart, that connects with people.

That actually has an interest in people and isn’t the person out there trying to spearfish everyone in the room. But, is trying to actually connect with people.

What that does is, believe me, if you do that with confidence and you do that with some swagger, then there is going to be some mystique about you. They are going to be really curious about who you are and what you do.

Lead them on to want you

You need to go in there with some confidence, you’re dressed well, and you’re not trying to pitch to everybody, but you’re actually showing sincere interest in other people, and then call them later.

You can trust me on this. I’ve made the mistake of being ‘that guy’, just like everybody else at an event like that, and it doesn’t work. What works is meeting people, showing interest, getting some information, taking even a couple of notes, in your head. Then, when you step away from a conversation, maybe jotting something down on the business card you got from them, so you remember later when you call them up. You call them and you reconnect that conversation you had.

What works is meeting people, showing interest, getting some information, taking even a couple of mental notes. Then, when you step away from a conversation, maybe jotting something down on the business card you got from them, so you remember later when you call them up. You call them and you reconnect that conversation you had.

You call and say, “Hey, I remember talking with you. You’re in real estate. I know you’re looking to make some things happen, I may or may not be a fit, but I enjoyed talking with you, and I’ll tell you what. Would you be open to a side project if it wouldn’t interfere with what you’re already doing? I may not be able to help you with real estate right now, although I will keep my ears open for you, but if I had a side project that we could work on together that could create some additional income, and I could show you step-by-step how to do it, would that be something you’re open to?

It’s a real simple approach and it’s going to be much more successful if you save that until after you’ve had that initial conversation meeting them at the event.

Essentially you’ve made the connection and you’ve gotten the clients interest. This is a great way to get connected and be on top of your game all day every day.

The above post was extracted from this LIVE session:

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About the Author Jason

Jason is a 3rd generation network marketer and founder of Network Marketing Accelerator. He and his family are collaboratively responsible for generating a multiple 7-figure income in their network marketing businesses. A coach and mentor to hundreds of successful business owners across multiple verticals, Jason is also a co-founder of OuterBox Solutions, a premier eCommerce Web Design firm.