33 Networking Tips, in 140 characters or less

Whether you are a featured speaker delivering a paradigm shifting presentation at a sold-out conference, or a small business owner attending a local industry mixer at a pub, networking at a professional event can be a daunting task. Networking doesn’t have to be a difficult experience though. In fact, networking should be thrilling because it is the key to making all of your dreams a reality.

In only eight words, Richard Branson summed up the value of networking: Succeeding in business is all about making connections. Make more connections, and improve your chances for success by integrating our 33 networking tips into your business plan. Each tip is expressed in only 140 characters or less so you can spend less time reading about networking, and more time building meaningful relationships.

1. During conversations, focus on the other person. Learn what makes them tick. Ask, listen, observe. @ChrisBrogan http://ethr.ee/1lg5mFw

2. When you first meet someone, use his or her name a few times to create a feeling of familiarity. @CIOonline http://ethr.ee/1n7ABxo

3. Don’t immediately send a LinkedIn invite to a new contact. Follow up that night, or the next day. @RealBusiness http://ethr.ee/XyWzn

4. When networking, inquire about passions, hobbies, and interests instead of asking “Where do you work?” @DaveKerpen http://ethr.ee/XzelXu

5. Don’t attend networking events with a list of things you want. Arrive with a list of things you can offer. @LearnVest http://ethr.ee/Xzb3DC

6. Need a reason to network? “Succeeding in business is all about making connections.” – Richard Branson @EntMagazine http://ethr.ee/1rVxsUm

7. Once you’ve made a new contact, ask what method of follow up they prefer: email, phone, LinkedIn, or other. @USnews http://ethr.ee/1rVzxj4

8. Adam Rifkin a respected networker in Silicon Valley suggests: Don’t rush relationships; trust takes time. @Bakadesuyo http://ethr.ee/1rVBgVC

9. Ben Franklin’s technique? Request a favor! Before someone will give to you, they must decide to like you. @TheWeek http://ethr.ee/1w783O7

10. Don’t focus on fear; focus on the joy of connecting with others. Tell yourself, “I like meeting people.” @FastCompany http://ethr.ee/XzaFFn

11. While at a conference, many people will go to the bar to relax. Do the same, even if you’re not drinking. @Forbes http://ethr.ee/1AwDSyA

12. If you’re staying overnight at a conference, invite a few other overnighters to dinner; pay the bill. @WSJ http://ethr.ee/Xzcge8

13. Be excited about networking; it “is a key driver behind higher salaries and career advancement.” @BusinessInsider http://ethr.ee/1AwFVCO

14. You will need a follow-up comment and a warm smile, but sometimes the best opening line is “Hi.” Try it. @HubSpot http://ethr.ee/Xzduq0

15. Want to network like a pro at conferences? Skip some sessions; stand in the hallway and be friendly. @GaryVee http://ethr.ee/1AwLCR9

16. Network on social media. To connect with people, promote their projects, and tag them in your posts. @SpeakerJeff http://ethr.ee/XzjjUc

17.  Interesting people easily make meaningful connections. Be able to talk about topics other than work. @HuffingtonPost http://ethr.ee/1AwTQsp

18.  Instead of constantly trying to network with leaders, seek out leadership roles and people will come to you. @CBSnews http://ethr.ee/XznSOw

19.  Jot down a few details about each new contact to maintain connections in your follow-up conversations. @Guardian http://ethr.ee/VEqp87

20. Don’t monopolize someone’s time. If you’re carrying the weight of a conversation, wrap it up and move on. @RaganComms http://ethr.ee/VEqOr5

21. Ditch the elevator pitch while networking. Network to make authentic connections, not sales. @KristiHedges http://ethr.ee/1lhCfBt

22. Put money into an “interesting people fund” to finance enriching networking and social experiences. @ReidHoffman http://ethr.ee/VErmNK

23. Take a friend with refined social skills to networking events to ease the awkwardness of breaking the ice. @Dailymuse http://ethr.ee/VEsK2R

24.  Don’t have the budget for a conference?  You can still network with attendees at the nearby shops and bars. @NYtimes http://ethr.ee/1lhAynH

25.  When in doubt, discuss the setting or the event. How? Do your homework about the event, and be observant. @RealSimple http://ethr.ee/1vhmjQf

26. “The business-building “gold” is not in collecting business cards but in the solid relationships you build.” @Forbes http://ethr.ee/1vhnwqs

27. Most people at events are in the same situation: they don’t know many people; they welcome icebreakers. @Steamfeedcom http://ethr.ee/1vhpc3i

28. Offer to help people. “The currency of real networking is not greed but generosity.” – Keith Ferrazzi @Ferrazzi http://ethr.ee/1rmRTxY

29. “If you want to go somewhere, it is best to find someone who has already been there.” @TheRealKiyosaki http://ethr.ee/1lhEchj

30. Amp up your LinkedIn presence. Share content and SlideShare decks, join groups, leverage @mentions, etc. @PameLump http://ethr.ee/1w91HxJ

31. Follow up with new contacts. Be helpful, generous, and considerate when reconnecting after events. @ArtOfManliness http://ethr.ee/1w93Edx

32. Guy Kawasaki defines good networking as always thinking “yes.” This is less risky than it sounds. @Heyguey http://ethr.ee/1w94lDt

33. Apply to be a speaker at conferences. Networking is easier if everyone at the event knows your name. @Ethos3 http://ethr.ee/1rVvYcI

We hope these tips will help you work the room like a pro at your next networking event.

And if you’re the featured speaker at the event, contact us today to learn how you can make connections from the stage with a stunning presentation designed by Ethos3.

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