Fact: Most people will simply never get anything out of networking. BUT help is at hand. Although it can take a while to become a master at networking, it only takes a few quick corrections to stop repelling people from you. Here are four of the main reasons people fail miserably at this crucial game.
Reason #1: Your Pitch Sucks
It's simply mind-blowing how few people even practice their pitch let alone put some effort into crafting a compelling impactful one.
Most of the time when you ask people "So what do you do?" most start off with some variation of "Ahh weeeelll you see" followed by an incredibly long explanation that could put you to sleep even if you just had 3 espressos. OR they simply state their profession. Like "I'm an accountant". I'm are standing there thinking: "and you think you are the only accountant here ??? PLEASE tell me why I should buy from YOU and not the other ones here. Your pitch has to be short, succinct and separate itself from the competition.
If you are not different, the listener will simply tune out or at the very least they will not remember you the next time they are looking for your type of product of service.
Reason #2: You are a blabber mouth
Please understand... we are not going to like you if you have the verbal runs. It's so fascinating that while most people don't like others that talk a lot, they think they themselves need to talk a lot to be interesting. Here is a tip that will make a massive difference in your life and business: Don't try to be interesting ... be INTERESTED.
When you listen like they are important or interesting.. guess what? They will FEEL important and you have just become their "super hero", because it's been a long time since anyone else bothered listening to them. Especially in the first minute or so or when you give your pitch it has to be one or MAXIMUM two sentences. Then stop to see if they ask more about what you are talking about, or simply turn your focus on them. Ask a question about their business or product. And by the way, if you talk a lot you will not only send a clear signal that you are an ego-maniac, but we also tend to perceive serial-talkers as being nervous and having low self confidence. Stop talking so much and start listening... it's one of the fastest ways to not shoot yourself in the foot.
Reason #3: You network in different groups all the time
Small business owners seems to have this idea that they need to get their name out to a big audience, hence they run around to as many events as they can. For small businesses it's not about exposure... it's about IMPACT.
Because their focus is spread thin, the people they meet will only see them once ever, or maybe once every 6 months. Therefore they will lose the battle of trust to someone they see once a month or every other month. Yep, you better realize that the battle of business today is won largely by the person/organization that is best at building trust.
Trust doesn't happen after meeting someone once. When people see you the second time they will recognize you and the third time they will start to trust you. So running around to a lot of different groups is simply wasting your time.
Reason #4: You don't follow up or do it the wrong way
Have I said it before? Trust takes time. Think about the last time you bought a product by a brand you have never heard about before from a stranger. Ok that would probably be NEVER or if you did it was a cheap impulse buy. Honestly think of it, we simply don't buy anything significant from strangers UNLESS what they are selling is a brand that we already trust. SELL YOU first... Sell them on starting a relationship with you, because they will not start to really listen to what your product or service is about until they know, like and trust YOU. Unless you follow up it's really mostly a waste of time and money.
That's it for now. Follow these simple rules and you will stop sucking at networking almost overnight. Until next time... give it ALL you've got.