Networking events are one of the most effective ways to promote your name, company and business ethos, as well as making important and often incredibly beneficial connections with others in the industry.
So, with this in mind, whether you have been invited to a particular networking event in the near future, or are arranging one yourself, then continue reading to learn how to stand out at a corporate networking event.
1. Be Enthusiastic & Stay Engaged
Although this first point seems particularly obvious, it is still important to keep at the proverbial forefront of your mind.
As soon as you enter the event, make sure to keep your mobile phone in your handbag or pocket and not be tempted to check your phone if you are feeling uncomfortable or you are not currently being engaged in conversation. If you do find yourself in this situation, instead look around the room for a group who are chatting and introduce yourself; the aim of the game is to network, not to update your social media status.
2. Research The Event Beforehand
Whether you have been told by a manager or other senior figure in the company that you are essentially required to attend the networking event, or you have opted to attend yourself to promote your business and/or yourself, either way it is strongly advisable to research the particular event beforehand.
Additionally and even more usefully, if you can get your hands on the guest list of the event, you can physically check who you would most like to connect and converse with, as a kind of professional shopping list.
3. Hand Out Merchandise
One of the absolute best ways to stand out at a networking event is to contact an established and reputable promotional supplier, such as anthembranding.com, beforehand who can manufacture and produce high quality products emblazoned with your brand name and logo.
After the networking event you can continue to promote your brand with such products, with one of the main benefits of official merchandise being that your brand and brand identity is taken into other people’s homes.
4. Engage In Meaningful Conversation
You will hopefully already be fully aware of the importance of making and maintaining eye contact, as well as the importance of a firm yet friendly handshake, when meeting new people in a professional context. However, both these things together are still not enough to really make a lasting impression.
Although it can be more than handy to keep a few classic conversation starters in your arsenal, the following topics and questions may help to cement your position in the conversation:
- Have you been to an event of this kind in the past?
- Tell me about your business?
- Have you met anyone today who you feel would be of particular benefit to your company?
- What do you enjoy the most about your particular line of work?
- What’s the best possible piece of business advice you have ever been given?