The Value of Being Connected

How many times have you felt stuck on something, turned to the ever dependable Google search, but still found yourself at a dead end? When it comes to many of the most important things in life — career changes, family emergencies, vendor selection — the internet either comes up with no answers or too many to sift. In those moments, it’s not so much what you know as who you know.

Have you ever noticed that when you’re talking with someone successful, whether a friend or mentor, how they seem to offer introductions more frequently than they give advice? More often than not, the full value of being connected becomes clear to us only after we realize that if we just “knew a guy,” we have a path out of our difficult situation.

This is all the more important for those of us who rely on our personal networks to create value in our businesses, whether as a network marketer, a real estate professional, financial advisor, or a local business owner. Let’s have a closer look at what it means to be connected and why it’s so valuable in today’s business world:

Starting Conversations

Think about your daily activities — whether it’s grocery shopping, take public transportation, or grabbing something to eat in a restaurant. Within that span of time, how many people do you come within close proximity to, but start a conversation with none of them? The ability to start a conversation naturally and carry it further with ease is what distinguishes those great conversationalists who are the best connectors. Sometimes it seems like you either have to be a natural at it or forget about it, but starting conversations is a skill you can acquire and practice.

The key to successfully opening up conversations is to ask the right questions. But the key to successfully sustaining a conversation, other than being polite and respectful, is being prepared to listen. Natural networkers know that every connection can be valuable at some point, even if it may not be clear up front. You could be in different industries, with no overlap in your business activities — but this connection might still open some doors you need in the future.

Being the Person to Call

Building an extensive network of valuable connections will have another interesting effect: you’ll become that one person everyone thinks of when they are struggling to solve a problems. By making the right connections, your influence and the trust people have in you will grow, making you a valued resource. As the connector, you will be valuable to any organization you decide to work for since your ability to connect people to what they need will enable you to call in favors when you need them. Not only will this give you the opportunity to help others, but it also means people will being more opportunities to you.

Mapping Your Contacts

We’re living in an increasingly faster-paced world and often fall prey to disconnect in both our personal and business lives. Conversation with the goal of connecting with someone has almost become a lost art, lost in the struggle to appear successful and be perceived as an influencer.

When you’re building your network of contacts effectively, you’ll strive to listen, remember and take care of whoever you’re connecting with. By paying attention to what matters to them, you ensure that they will pay attention to what matters to you.

 

Being well-connected in this day and age has become somewhat of a lost art, despite the technologies that are available to us. Whenever you make the time to hear someone out and connect, log it into the Contact Mapping app and let it help you nurture that relationship. Join free for a month and witness its life-changing effects for yourself.

How to Capitalize on New Relationships after A Conference

There’s always that one person at conferences. That one person everyone seems to know and is clamoring to talk to. This person makes people laugh, makes people feel good about themselves. However this person didn’t come to be by being a self-involved salesperson. They became that way by simply practicing basic humanity. 

Conferences create an excellent networking environment where people expect to mingle and forge new relationships. Approaching someone to talk to them isn’t awkward or difficult once you get used to the conference atmosphere.

However, after the event has ended and you have plenty of business cards and conversations mixing up in your head, the spirit of connecting might begin to fade. Especially if you’re prone to forgetting faces, names or facts, capitalizing on new relationships after a conference might be a nightmare for you. If that’s the case, these tips might help:

Write Details Down

When you are meeting dozens of people in a short time span in a conference setting, it's easy to feel like important details go in one ear and out the other. We all know that feeling of someone telling you their name and you forgetting it within seconds. The feeling of panic and embarrassment sets in as you realize you've completely blanked it out.

Most people can’t remember every single detail that came up in a conversation even if it was relatively recent. In a conference setting, where you’ll hopefully talk with plenty of people, it’s even less reasonable to expect to remember everything. However, this information is what you’ll be using to forge the relationship, so you need every detail you can remember.

A good habit to develop is writing down the key details about the person you met immediately after the conversation. These notes will certainly help you when you’re trying to follow-up and think of what you might write that would establish the positive rapport again.

Set Follow-Up Reminders

“Hey! I just wanted to check in and see how your daughter’s art show went? I remember you telling me she was really nervous.”

A call for something that seems so small and unrelated to a professional relationship speaks volumes. It shows a genuine interest in the other person as opposed to just using them for business purposes. However, if time gets away from you and you don’t follow up, you can miss the opportunity to create these meaningful touchpoints.

A new connection won’t be valuable to you if you forget to follow up and develop the relationship further. It’s safe to say that everyone knows this and has the best intention of following up right away. Unfortunately it happens frequently that many still fail to follow up. But why is that?

Since the recommended time frame for follow-ups is within a week from the event, some things can easily slip through the cracks. Under the burden of returning to your other day-to-day obligations, you might forget what you wanted to follow up about, or who you wanted to follow up with. It is why setting up a reminder to go along with your notes can be all it takes to ensure that you follow up when you’re supposed to. What’s more, you’ll know what to write or say.

Aim to Be Helpful

We’ve all been on the receiving end of a sales pitch as soon as we have said “hello,” and it’s never a nice feeling. However, it isn’t much better to be hit with a pitch a week into knowing someone, either. Developing a good business relationship is impossible if it’s evident to the other person that you’re only looking after your interests.

Aim to be helpful to your new connection instead. That might be as simple as sharing some content that you think might be appreciated or offering to help them make a needed connection. If you’re useful and valuable to them, they’ll want to return the favor.

Making the most out of your conference connections becomes much easier if you develop the right networking habits. Nurturing a relationship after a conference is very similar to the evolution of a new friendship. The difference is, a budding friendship is more natural and intuitive. You remember details about your new friend’s life because you are interested and care; you send text messages because you want to talk to them; and you help them because you care about them.

Capitalizing on a new relationship after a conference is the same. The only difference is it feels less natural because you are doing it for a business purpose. If you treat your professional relationships with the same attention and care as personal relationships, these tips will come more naturally than if you perceive them as merely “business interactions”. In case you need help building and sticking to them, Contact Mapping is an app that might help. Join free for a month and start building your high-quality contact network.

5 Ways to Capture the Attention of Everyone You Meet at a Conference

A conference is a busy place, and networking opportunities are what makes the experience of attending one so worth it. However, meeting so many new people can also be overwhelming, especially if not wholly prepared.

When we’re networking in the fast lane, it can be hard to make meaningful connections and ensure that people remember you. What’s more, it can also be hard for you to remember most details about them! To help you network more effectively, here are five ways to capture the attention of everyone you meet at a conference:

1) Have a Purpose for Attending

Not all conference attendees are there with a defined purpose. Of course, most of them want to listen and learn, if nothing else — but you can get so much more out of a conference if you step up your game. And if you ensure that your purpose also gives you an excellent way to break the ice and learn something about the people you’re connecting with, you will stand out from the crowd. It will ensure they’ll remember you.

2) Approach People to Create Content

Creating content while you’re attending the conference is one of the ways to give yourself a mission that will require interaction. The best part is that you can be creative with it: conduct a survey, take photos, interview other attendees. Find a way to make your material applicable and useful to your industry, and that might open the way to new contacts.

3) Be a Valuable Contact

Meaningful networking can’t happen without an exchange of values and ideas, or at least a promise of it in the future. If you want to ensure you’re the person to contact for everyone you meet, start by listening well and remembering the details of the conversation.

You are trying to remember all the details while at a conference. It might be easier said than done; unless you have the help of a great tool. Contact Mapping app allows you to easily record new contacts and the most important things you’ve learned about them right after a conversation. It will be a valuable ally in your efforts to improve your networking skills.

4) Focus on Them

You won’t get very far in a conference setting if all you do is talk and worry about yourself. Once you shift your focus to other people and try to make them feel more comfortable around you, you’ll notice that you can establish positive rapport more often. Other than natural conversationalists, not many people get this right, but it’s a skill that you can learn.

5) Ask Relevant Questions

Whether it’s during a session Q&A segment or in conversation with a group of other people, it’s a good idea to ask questions whose answers will help other people as well. Usually, those questions are relatively simple, and their basic level ensures that others can chime in. If you have any issues where answers would help you, it’s better to save them for a one-on-one conversation with the speaker after the session.

Networking effectively at a conference can mean the difference between leaving with information versus leaving with a lot of opportunity. Making sure you capture the attention of everyone you meet can be a challenge. But like any other challenge, you can overcome this one with practice, preparation, and useful tools. If you want to try out the Contact Mapping app, join free for a month and experience all its benefits yourself.


How To Overcome Your Fear And Make The Most Of Any Networking Event

How To Overcome Your Fear And Make The Most Of Any Networking Event

Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, many of us find large networking events to be overwhelming. Often we walk away feeling as though we didn’t get much out of the event. Below are the secrets that have taken me from avoiding networking events to (almost 😀) looking forward to them!