How to Follow Up After A Network Event
Networking is essential to climbing any career ladder in any profession. It is also vital if you are looking to turning your side hustle into a lucrative business and even increasing revenue for your current enterprise. Read my previous post on Four Reasons Why You Should Network if you’re still not sold on it.
Attending a networking event is the first step toward meeting new people but the real work in relationship building happens after the event ends.
Relationship building isn’t a one-off. It’s a process that takes time plus effort because it involves establishing trust and likability from both parties. It is not about what the person can do for you. However, if done effectively it can raise awareness around your personal and professional goals, it can serve as a conduit to connect you with others you may not otherwise have access to and it can result in new friendships.
Here are three easy ways to follow up after a networking event.
Make the first move. 💻
A day or two after the event send an email message asking for an in-person meeting. An easy trick is to write something memorable on the back of their business card and mention it in the email. This shows that you were paying attention during your conversation and are a great listener. Also, during your conversation at the networking event, if you mentioned a resource you planned to share-- do that. I always mention my blog and add the link to that email communication.
But first coffee. ☕️
Your initial in-person meeting is a great time to elaborate further on your previous conversation as well as learn more about the other person. Immediately after the event, make an email connection and set up a coffee meeting as soon as both your schedules are amenable. Coffee meetings are great because you can do them before work. Coffee is more affordable than lunch. If the meeting is overly awkward you can leave as soon as you’re done with your drink. If it’s going well order another cup.
Be social. 👩🏾💻
After your in-person meeting (assuming it goes well) connect via social media. This is a great way to stay in touch without being overly burdensome. For industry connections, LinkedIn makes the most sense. For other connections follow that person on the appropriate social media platforms and ask that they do the same.
Bonus: Connecting with High Profile People. 👩🏾⚖️
Send an email to the keynote speaker prior to attending the event if you want to connect. During the event introduce yourself and follow up on the conversation from the email. At the end of the event, send another email to set up your coffee meeting. The high profile speaker is more likely to agree to meet because you’ve already established some rapport.
List some of your networking tips below; especially my fellow introverts.