The last time you went to a networking meeting, What did you have to show for it? A massive deck of business cards? Sure, it looks impressive but how can you turn those cards into something that will work for you?
You’ve gone through the first stage of the networking process, now it’s on to the second stage—reaping the rewards. All sales happen in the follow-up AND it takes more touches than you think.
Did you know, 80% of sales happen after the 5th touch with the client and it can take up to 21 touches before someone decides to buy. And guess what? Most people stop after the third try.
Learning to connect at a networking event is great BUT it is equally important to learn follow-up skills that keep you growing your contact list.
Here are four to get you started:
- Link up on LinkedIn
Send all your event contacts an invitation to connect on LinkedIn. Make sure to use the ‘send a note’ button from their personal profile. Make it all about them and learning more about their business with this first follow-up.
- Connect via email
Be sure to reference anything you talked about with your new connections to refresh their memory. You may not hear back right away but remember just because a contact doesn’t connect back immediately, it doesn’t mean they’re not interested. Everyone else, like you, are busy, so stay pleasantly persistent and you’ll be sure to stay top-of-mind.
- Check-in Regularly
Additionally, be sure to remind yourself to reconnect with your contact each month or every quarter (a tickler file works best for this). They might not be interested in your products or services right now, but things are constantly changing in the marketplace. Bonus: Make sure to say Happy Birthday and congratulate for work anniversaries on Social Media.
- Schedule a Call
Suggest a 20-minute phone/zoom call that will be of mutual benefit to both of you– although you’ll want to focus on how the call will help them. You can discuss products, services, trends, or anything else that might benefit your connection. Do your research for this chat so your contact knows you did your homework and are genuinely interested in seeing how you can help one another.
Choose from the suggestions above or combine some of them to develop your own follow-up strategies. It is important to tell them how you will be following up. When you tell them what to expect it makes it real for both of you. You will be more likely to follow up because you told them that you will, and they are going to be more receptive to the follow up because they know it’s coming.
Oh, and the best part, they will often share the best way for you to follow up with them so they will be even more receptive. Never let a networking event go to waste again.
Remember, the sale is in the follow-up.
Be filled to overflowing,
P.S. Need help getting organized with your follow-up? a.k.a., Tickler File? Or with other strategies to stay ‘top of mind’ with your prospects? Click HERE to connect with me for a FREE 30-minute Clarity Session.