Today, I’d like to discuss what networking has done for BlueberryCloud along with a few tips helpful to any entrepreneur that has decided to incorporate networking in to their marketing strategy.
Our strategies are very simple when it comes to growth. We believe in consistent, steady growth.
Whether it’s trying to grow a business or play a game of Monopoly:
I constantly evaluate the objective, moving parts and rules of the game; using all three to inform every decision I make. That said, I can be very honest in saying I don’t feel comfortable in scenarios that require quick decisions to be made.
Our marketing strategies are very simple and we don’t do anything overly innovative or revolutionary.
One of our not-so-revolutionary ideas is to build on our brand in the local community through a handful of in-person initiatives; one of these initiatives being networking.
Before I go through the benefits we’ve found, I’ll say that we attend networking events set up by http://www.meetup.com, North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce, BNI, Craigslist and the bar.
What Networking has Done for BlueberryCloud.
- Created new relationships and subsequently, increased BlueberryCloud awareness,
- Greatly improved my ability to comfortably speak about BlueberryCloud to strangers (awesome for our cold calling strategies),
- Learning from the successes and failures of other entrepreneurs (at no charge),
- Landed us new deals have snowballed in to more and more deals.
On to the tips for those of your interested in networking but haven’t yet.
The Attendee Mindset
It’s important to note that I never walk in to a networking event hoping to land a deal – you’re setting yourself up to fail. That said, I walk in, looking to walk away with at least two things with every networking event:
- Multiple memorable conversations with fellow entrepreneurs
- New knowledge that will prove to be helpful with my future entrepreneurial lifestyle
This mindset increases my comfort when networking, I am more personable and approachable and I always walk away with a point in the Win column which adds success and builds on confidence.
How to approach unknowns?
Just do it.
It’s hard to ignore your inner fears of rejection and it’s something most people need a lifetime’s worth of working on.
But, you should ask yourself, would you rather be remembered as the person who awkwardly hung around in the back of the room? Or would you rather be remembered as the person who showed guts, approached a group of individuals he/she didn’t know and engaged in a conversation?
Obviously, the latter is more difficult, but it’s a step in the right direction.
What to do after?
Presumably, if you spoke to fellow entrepreneurs, you collected several of their business cards.
Without looking at the business cards, try and recall the names and professions of the people you spoke too.
Afterwards, confirm your recollection with the business cards you collected and repair your memory where necessary.
Finally, and most importantly, add all of the collected contact information to our networking database. This list may prove to be extremely valuable in the future.
That’s it folks! Write / email us with your comments, opinions, hate mail etc – we’ll take it all!