In the series, the complete guide to business networking, I’ve been posting tips on Linkedin and also made some videos on the same topic. Here is another one – how to follow up after a networking event.
You meet new people at networking events and the time spent getting to know them is worthwhile only when you follow up after you are done at the event. Here are a few quick tips to do it right:
1. Should you follow up: Yes! Maybe not with everyone who handed you their card. but definitely with the ones you clicked and or have common interests to take forward.
2. How should you do it: It really depends on your rapport. I think the best way to do it would be through an email. Whatsapp could feel a little personal, although Whatsapp is now where people are most found. So maybe casually check if they are comfortable with Whatsapp.
3. Email soon: Send an email within 2-3 days of the event reminding them of the meeting and how you liked meeting them
4. End with a CTA: If you have common interests, mention meeting up sometime. Don’t be direct with your propositions about business or your products. Suggest catching up and see where it goes.
Depending on your equation with the person, you can send one or two reminders.
If that works, great! If it doesn’t probably it wasn’t meant to be.
Here are a few things you shouldn’t do:
1. Don’t spam people with your product brochures as soon as you are done. Something similar happened to me once. I met a lady at an event and it was all cordial. But she started calling me to push her product. I kept stalling her politely initially. And then I had to give up taking her calls. I know that was rude, but there was no way to escape her incessant calling otherwise.
2. Don’t get too personal and start whatsapping. Others may not be comfortable with that. This also is from personal experience. Especially when people message with no regard to the time of the day (or night)
3. Add them to your Whatsapp groups: This is a new phenomenon that I have noticed lately. People exchange cards during the event and then take the conversation to a large Whatsapp group. It’s like they are looking for people to grow their groups. You amy not even catch up with them again once they are lost in the crowd. So first, build some rapport. Figure out if they are a good fit for the group and are okay with being added to it.
Whether it is an interview or a networking event, following up after is important to explore opportunities.
Here’s a post with 6 tips on following up the right way