Six Types of Networking Events That Can Grow Your Business

Posted on October 1, 2013. Filed under: Business, Business Development, Marketing, Networking, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |


Networking is an integral part of growing your small business, but most people don’t take the time to make a networking plan.  I recently hosted a tele-seminar for Independent Ladies Club called Master How to Develop a Powerful, Diverse Network with guest speaker Coach Kimberly.  She shared the reason why networking works is the connections you make, which leads to the relationship you create, and the relationships can help you to grow your business.  Therefore, it helps to be very strategic in your networking activities and knowing what types of networking events you would like to attend and who specifically you are looking to meet at these events.  Here are six types of networking events that can help you to grow your business:

  1. Casual Contact Networking–  This type of networking involves networking with individuals in a casual setting.  This could be things like a local chamber after hour events, a happy hour, etc.  The goal at these types of events is to make connections with individuals in a more relaxed “non-business” type of atmosphere.
  2. Strong Contact Networking–  This type of networking is an involvement in a networking group whose sole purpose is to pass business referrals to other members of the group.  Examples of this type of networking includes Business Networking International (BNI), PowerCore, and Chamber Lead groups to name a few.  Your goal with this type of networking is to create trusting relationships with the individuals in the group, which will increase their trust level in you and your services and they will  feel more comfortable to consistently refer business to you.
  3. Community Service–  Being involved in your local community can really help you and your business to be more visible and can be considered a form of networking in which you and your company are giving back and in return you can get new business. Although giving back may not lead to direct business, the exposure for you and your business almost always leads to indirect business in some way.
  4. Professional Associations–  This type of networking is good to create strategic alliances with other people within your industry.  Many people specialize in a particular area of a profession, so if they have a client in need of services that they don’t offer, they can refer the business to you.  Someone from your professional association could be a good fit to refer business back and fourth.  In addition, going to professional associations specifically designed for people in your target market is another great way to network and also reach potential prospects.
  5. Social/Business Groups–  As the saying goes, a lot of business transactions actually happen at social events.  Therefore, attending events that are social is a great way to develop relationships and make those business connections.
  6. Women/Men Organizations–  Being involved in clubs and organizations specifically designed for women or men can help you to create relationship with individuals who could be a great referral source.

What types of networking events do you attend and does it help to grow your business?


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2 Responses to “Six Types of Networking Events That Can Grow Your Business”

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Business networking is one of the most underused facilities available to small businesses. The idea of like minded business men and women from the same industry giving each other a boost any way possible is one that should be fully taken advantage of.

I agree claire! Other business owners tend to be very supportive of each other and a networking environment enhances that supportive environment.

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