You’ve probably all had the “used car salesman” experience at networking groups. You meet a new person, and doing the normal protocol, you politely ask them what they do. They immediately launch into a passionate pitch about how wonderful their product or service is, and implies that you’ll be dead next week if you don’t buy it. You don’t ask them anymore questions, hoping the conversation will end so you can move on.
This probably sounds a bit judgmental. It’s not meant to be. I know it’s hard to understand the difference between networking and selling. It can come from feeling passionate about your offerings , but if you tell everyone too much it can feel like a sales pitch rather than relationship building.
Here are a few tips that can help even the best networker be better.
1. Play ping pong. Get to know the other person. If you both do that, it will be more like a ping pong game without it getting stuck with one person holding onto the ball too long.
2. Move around the room. Think of yourself as a spider building a web and each person you meet helps the web to grow more beautiful.
3. Ask for business cards. If someone pointedly asks you about your products, then contact them later to see if they want more information. Even if someone says they’re interested they won’t really be able to focus right then.
Networking is about building connections, making contacts and finding possible strategic partners. Once you have done that well, the selling process is half done without you focusing on it all.
Helping you clear your focus and grow your business.