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Five Networking Mistakes That Can Cost You Clients
Networking events are one of the best ways to find potential clients for our company. Many entrepreneurs hate these types of events because they don't see their use: basically they lose a day of work and come home with a stack of cards from people who want them to buy something (along with the same thing you want!).
With the economy going, a business day (or even a half day) is a lot of time to waste if you don't have a concrete plan for the event.
5 Networking Mistakes
Next we present you 5 common mistakes that we often commit and that prevent us from getting better prospects and sales.
wrong choice of event
Not having cards on hand
Not dressing properly
lack of punctuality
Wrong choice of event
One of the most common mistakes is sign us up for the wrong event. For example, if you are a web designer and you sign up for an event where the main event is the presentation of new software for website or blog design, it is very likely that you will learn a lot but it is unlikely that you will find a client in the audience.
Insteadit could be very positive if you attended a networking event at the local chamber of commerce where you will have the opportunity to chat with some local businessmen and present your services to them.
The first time we met With a potential client we want to leave a good impression of both ourselves and our business.
In networking meetings, as in general in any event, we have very little time to explain to people the nature of our work, the benefits of working with us, etc.
That's why it's important that before attending one of these events we have prepared our presentation: short, focused on the needs of the potential client and the results or benefits that they will achieve if they hire us. You have to talk to people about benefits, not features.
Not having cards or promotional material on hand
Before attending any professional event we have to prepare enough business cards and promotional material (brochures, flyers, etc). If the day comes and we see that we run out of cards, we can always go to one of those businesses that make cards in 2 hours, or we can have a file prepared with a series of cards ready to be reproduced on a good quality color printer.
There is nothing worse that writing our data on a napkin and handing it to the potential client indicates that we are not preparing to attend an event that is designed precisely to develop professional contacts and we are not communicating a very professional idea.
Not dressing according to the situation
The image does matter. There are very nice clothes but frankly they are not appropriate for a business meeting, as potential as it may be.
In some events there is a pre-established dress code, although we do not like it, accepting the proposed etiquette says that we know how to abide by the rules and we are reliable, very important characteristics for business.
Of course the dress varies according to the event and the type of professionwhile we expect a more formal dress from a legal professional or a financial consultant, we can expect a more relaxed style from an architecture or design professional, to name a few examples.
I never understood that mania of football coaches who show up to matches in suit and tie...
In short, it is necessary to select the most appropriate clothing for each event.
There are people who never arrive on time for an appointment, meeting, event. As "nice" as the absent-minded may be, in the professional world being late is simply unacceptable. Being punctual is part of the respect we owe to other people. It shows that we respect your time and that we are able to meet the deadlines.
The 5 most common mistakes of companies in social networks
1. DO NOT CITE YOUR SOURCES.
When you use content from other pages or images that you have found on the web, never forget to cite the author. The fact that the photographs are circulating on Google does not mean that they are free of image rights. Try to use your own photos, or paid photos if necessary. Try to be original. There are free photography websites for this type of thing, but choose well because it often happens that later you see that there are a lot of companies using the same photo, and it is not the best for marketing. Never publicly use paid photo demos. They are of poor quality and it is not legal.
2. DO NOT COMMENT ON SHARED CONTENT.
When you put a photo, joke or news that you have seen on another page, comment on it. If you don't, it will appear that you are dedicated to sharing without even reading the information you are offering to your customers beforehand. It gives a careless and cold image.
3. EXCEEDING PERSONAL OPINIONS.
It is one thing to comment on the news or update your status, and another to tell your life or give your version of what is happening in the world without thinking that you are on a company page. That's why you have your personal profile. It is not that you cannot make a personal comment, but thinking about what is said and how it is said. It is your company and you are its image. Try to make that image positive.
4. BOMB WITH PUBLICATIONS.
We have talked about the fact that content from other pages is often shared. Well, don't abuse it. Try to generate valuable content, close to your sector. If you post every hour, people will get tired and end up banning you because it's annoying. There is no time for one piece of content to reach people when you are publishing another and another… Each social network has its rules. On Facebook this is penalized. You must thoroughly know each site where you are present and how it works. That way you will reach more people in the long run. Success is not in who has more followers, because with payment methods it is relatively easy to achieve. The important thing is the value that your followers have, that they stay, that they listen to you and that they collaborate.
5. DO NOT INTERACT WITH YOUR FOLLOWERS.
This is one of the biggest mistakes, because that is really why you are present on social networks. You are here to be known, you are here to help position your website or because it is what is required, yes. But most importantly, you are there to listen, to learn the habits of your potential clients and to attend to their criticisms and requests. It is another way to do market research, to understand how you should direct your marketing and sales strategies. You have to respect the opinions and suggestions of users and always try to answer them, with education and respect. Both to give thanks and to refute accusations. It is a 24 hour customer service. Ask for their opinion about your services or your publications, ask for FAV, RT, “like”, share… that they feel part of your brand.
There are tons more tips for getting the most out of networking, but these 5 tips are simple to understand and implement right now.
And to finishWhat "bonuses” I am going to leave 2 more errors raised: not turning off the cell phone and continuously interrupting the conversation and, of course, not following up on contacts.
Networking meetings can be a real gold mine if we know how to take advantage of them.
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