Hi everybody, Julie here, the Sales Ace, bringing you a sales tip to help skyrocket your business.
This time, I'd like to follow on from what I started last week, talking to all of you out there who are in a front-line selling role, and we were talking about networking.
So last week I spoke about having a networking strategy: this week, I'm going to talk about places to network. There are formalized networking organizations that you can go to, wherever you are in the world. Check them out.
I live in Northamptonshire, and we're very lucky to have some really, really good groups. I personally belong to one called the Business Community, run by my friend Paul Green, which is a great little group.
I'm also a member of the Chamber of Commerce - I like to network there as well. And if I'm invited to other groups, I like to pop along to those to see what's happening and if there are any potentially great connections to be made.
The thing about networking, and if you're going to go to a networking group is that you need to find out what works for you. Normally, there are networking events in the mornings, afternoons and evenings. You've got to find which one works for you, at your time of day when you feel the most alert and productive.
There are other groups that are industry-specific, and it's great to find those, but the structures of each group may be very different.
You can go from really open speed networking events (Northamptonshire Chamber do a really good one - I’ve been to that a couple of times) through to some very formalized ones; BNI for example- that's got a great structure, it’s very formalized and that can work for some people, but it's about finding a networking group that works for you.
Now, there are also other places that you network whilst being out and about and speaking to people. I've networked with people while sitting in queues or waiting for trains, or even on the train sometimes.
So with that in mind, I always, always carry a business card. I’ve always got one in my handbag or in my briefcase. So that if the opportunity has arisen and I've had a conversation with somebody and they thought "oh, yeah, I'm really interested", or I'm interested in them, then I'll swap cards.
So that's other places to physically network.
LinkedIn, again, is another great networking tool. Obviously, that's more online and we don't get the face-to-face element. For me, going out and about and finding a group that actually works for you, is absolutely key.
So check it out in your local area and I'd be really, really interested for those of you that watch my videos, in the comments below, just let me know which ones you go to, and which ones you rate because then that's going to help people watching this video.
So that's it for this week. See you soon!