How to Use Networking Events to Build, Maintain and Grow Your Business
By Bill Achola
In the year 1996, a young student named James Thomas Fallon left his college education to move to Los Angeles and pursue a career in comedy. He had a knack for humor, a talent for impressions, and one skill that set him apart from every other struggling performer.
He could connect well with people.
Fast forward a few years, Jimmy Fallon was hosting NBC’s The Tonight Show which is the highest opportunity any comedian could ever get. Fallon was, and still is, talented beyond doubt. But his insane success story was not driven by talent alone.
Comedy, just like any other entertainment field, is a business. And being successful in that business depends on how well you can market yourself and how well you can connect with the people who matter.
In his book Smartcuts, based on his conversations with the Tonight Show host, the author Shane Snow claims that a lot of Fallon’s success as a businessman promoting a product (himself) was the result of his amazing ability to create relationships with some of the most influential people in his industry.
What Jimmy Fallon was and is so good at doing is known, in business terms, as networking. And before we move on to discuss the impact of networking on businesses, we should know what exactly we mean when we talk about business networking.
What is networking?
In the simplest of terms, networking might be referred to as the lowest-cost marketing method many businesses can employ. Business networking can be defined as a process in which you might leverage your existing business connections to develop sales and business opportunities. That’s not it. You can also use networking events for affiliate marketing, collaboration and joint ventures.
So, in effect, it’s a process of building and fostering new relationships through introductions and referrals. It’s not about what you know about the business. It’s about who you know in the business.
When it comes to networking, the medium you utilize is almost as important as, if not more so than, the nature of the process. Business networking can be conducted through networking events involving face-to-face meetings, formal or informal gatherings and communication mediums like phone and email.
However, the single most influential medium of networking these days is social media. And that should be our focus of attention. Let’s consider a prominent business networking website, LinkedIn, as an example.
Business networking and LinkedIn
Facebook and many other social networking websites were established with a simple purpose – to do what it said on the banner, to bring people together socially. It wasn’t long before people discovered that if you can use social media to connect socially, you can also do it to connect professionally.
And, lo and behold, LinkedIn was born.
As a business person, if there’s one thing you should absolutely excel at, it is knowing how to use LinkedIn to build powerful influence. When you think of LinkedIn, you imagine establishing a strong network by creating new Go to the full article.
Source:: Juff Bullas Blog