Please… Stop Going to Networking Events!

Date September 10, 2008

Last week I spent a day making my fourth contact with people I met at a networking event the previous month. It was a great event filled with what seemed to be highly motivated professionals who truly wanted to grow their business and referrals. The strange thing is 90% of the people have yet to make a single contact with me. Should I take this personally? Maybe I present myself in a bad way or don’t say the right things. Could it be that most people simply don’t followup after a networking event? The question that comes to mind is why would you go to a networking event, meet 20 new contacts, and not followup? What is the point of that?

It reminds me of a conversation I had recently with Bob Civello owner of Smarter Small Business. I met Bob at the same networking event I was following up on from last month. He made an off handed remark at a later meeting about the lack of any followup after networking events. Bob estimated in the last two years he has attended over 50 business expos, tradeshows, and networking events. Bob has shook hands with over 2,000 people at these events. With that many people I would think at least half of them did some kind of followup. I mean how hard is it to followup with an email or a phone call?  I outlined my followup process in my post 7 Steps to Follow Up Success.

Sadly the rest of the story is only 14 people did any kind of followup. 14 out of 2,000! If you are one of the 1,986 people my hope is you are reading this! The part to really think about here is at this point Robert has so much value on followup that he is very open to meeting with anyone who engages him after the event. He knows if a new contact actually follows up they are well worth adding to his network. Imagine how easy it would be to stand out to Robert… Simply picking up the phone or sending an email would give you the opportunity to connect, make a true new contact, and create a new referral source.

I think most businesses and sales professionals want to stand out from their competition. It seems with Roberts experience it could be as simple as just picking up the phone and reconnecting.

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4 Responses to “Please… Stop Going to Networking Events!”

  1. ezineaerticles » Blog Archive » Please… Stop Going to Networking Events! said:

    [...] Original alan [...]

  2. Casey Eberhart said:

    This is a great post. I really find people are not really sure why they go to a networking event in the first place. Cracks me up thinking that only 14 out of 2000 did anything. Kinda scary how much business people just leave on the table.

  3. Eric Canja said:

    What a great post…

    In this industry – A LOT OF PEOPLE – miss the most important aspect of networking…

    It is about building relationships…

    Speaking of – the other person posting sounds really familiar – if that is the SAME Casey Eberhart that put on a TER in LA earlier this year… we are somewhat connected…

    And by the look and feel of this blog…

    You and I may have a connection…

    Again, great post.

  4. Does it make sense to blog? | said:

    [...] is a time sink. Show up often enough and you start to see the same old people again and again.  I read an article recently from a guy who advocates networking events and he claims he went to 50 events, shook 2000 hands and [...]

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