Developing Relationships is the Key to Networking

Do not think about business networking in Atlanta as a numbers game. You may connect with hundreds of businesspeople at corporate events or other gatherings, but that doesn’t mean anything if you don’t establish relationships with any of them.

If you get to know at least one or two people by talking with them personally and learning more about them, then you would have established high-quality business connections. Forming just two connections like this is a better way to network than handing out business cards to hundreds of people and never talking to them.

Deep communication is a way to establish trust between you and the other businessperson. You don’t need to talk too much about your personal life, but you can humanize yourself in the conversation by talking briefly about your family, where you’re from, and so on. If the businessperson can see you as a regular person, then they can relate to you on a personal level. Trust is the main ingredient in gaining their business.

The mistake that most new entrepreneurs and businesspeople make is they always try to sell all the time. Business networking does not mean throwing advertisements, and promotional material in people’s faces 24/7. A true businessperson or consumer doesn’t see that as a sign of professionalism.

The way you win over the trust of someone is by not making it look like you’re desperate to sell. They must want to purchase from you without any pressure put on them. You can pull this off if you develop trust with them and present a professional image in their eyes. That is why developing relationships is crucial because it doesn’t involve anything about sales or referrals. It only involves getting to know each other and sharing contact information.

As time goes on, they may contact you in the future to inquire about your company’s products or services. Since they already have a relationship with you, then it is easier for them to choose your company over one of your competitors. There are no guarantees that your connection will call you, but that is part of the networking game. You must keep establishing relationships with new connections and see what happens.

Therefore, you should always attend a networking event without any expectations. Then you won’t feel compelled to be pushy or salesy with anyone. Instead, you can have a relaxed demeanor as you talk with people. That is how they will trust you more.


Professional Attire Can Boost Your Networking Results

We all love casual Fridays at the office, but that doesn’t mean you should get in the habit of being causal. If you are an entrepreneur or a professional businessperson, then you must present yourself professionally whenever you meet another businessperson or customer. Only someone like Mark Zuckerberg can get away with wearing jeans and a T-shirt to social gatherings. For those of us who’re not billionaires, we must work harder to make a good impression.

If you’re a man, then get in the habit of wearing suits and ties. You may prefer to wear polo shirts and khakis, but those are not the clothes of a leader. Those are the clothes of an employee who works for a leader. Business professionals only want to invest their time and money with someone who is presentable and knowledgeable. The brand image is a vital factor in making connections with just about any stakeholder in your business. You must sustain that image with your attire.

As for businesswomen, they have a few more apparel options to choose from. The most popular choice for businesswomen seems to be pantsuits these days. A pantsuit is like the female version of a suit and tie on men. The only difference is that women don’t need to wear any ties around their necks. They can just wear a dress shirt, pants, and a jacket. Sometimes they’ll wear a dress over it if they’re attending a formal event, but either is fine for networking purposes.

Business networking in Atlanta always starts with the wardrobe. However, it doesn’t only matter for local meetups. You must also think about your wardrobe when you photograph yourself for social media too. A lot of younger entrepreneurs have social media accounts where they post up personal videos and photographs of themselves for fun. The problem with that is it can affect your business networking capabilities if other businesspeople find this content. They might think you’re a scammer because of your unprofessional content.

So, it is advised that you remove any content of yourself on the internet, which shows you in a less than flattering light. Try to cast an image of professionalism on the internet by taking high-resolution pictures and videos of yourself wearing business attire. Make sure the lighting is perfect and that you look presentable in front of the camera. If you can pull this off, then networking online will be a piece of cake.