If I don’t know you, haven’t spoken to you and yet get an impersonal sales email from you after you picked up my card at a networking event then I’m not likely to do business with you. Simples.

There’s no faster way of getting black listed on someone’s email and networking list than to start spamming attendees of an event. If you want my time and attention then speak to me and get to know what I might need/want before trying to sell to me.

Don’t get me wrong, if we didn’t get a chance to hook up at the meeting it doesn’t mean you can’t connect afterwards and the take it forward from there, just don’t do the hard sell as you won’t get a good response and will soon gain a reputation you don’t want.

Networking is a bout ‘farming’ – preparing the soil, planing the seed, nurturing it,watching it grow and then harvesting the crop. This may seem a little twee but it works. If you look at it from a perspective of getting what you can as quickly as possible and then getting out of there then you may make a few sales but they won’t be loyal. If you approach it from the farming angle and you spend time and effort nurturing your contacts and building strong business relationships then you will create a rock solid network that will grow with you and last the test of time.

I have contacts from when I first started in networking back in 2002 who I still work with today and many more that I’ve collected along the way. I’m proud to recommend them and know I can rely on them for my own and my customers’ needs. They are worth their weight in gold to me and are only there from having the right attitude from the start.

So consider what you want to gain from your networking adventures. Is is a quick fix and then you’re outta there? Or would you like to build a network of trusted colleagues who will be with you through thick and thin for many years to come?

I know which one has more value to me…

As always I’d love to hear your experiences and thoughts on this so please join in the conversation below…