Hope you’ve had a good couple of weeks and have recovered from the Jubilee! I’m just getting back to work after the half term break and I’m now very aware that it’s only 6 weeks till the summer holidays so lot’s to crack on with.

You know that I’m a big fan of social media and that I feel being active on at least one platform should be part of any freelance trainer’s marketing strategy. However, in this digital age where you can have so much fun making friends and business connections online it can be easy to fall into the trap of neglecting face to face networking. As good as social media is there really is no substitute for meeting people in the flesh!

One of the questions I get asked a lot is ‘Where do I find networking events and how do I know if they are any good?’ Your definition of ‘good’ depends on what you are expecting to get out of it in the first place. Far too many people, in my opinion expect to get immediate business from a networking event and give up if they don’t get it. This is not only totally unrealistic, it goes against the whole spirit of networking which is all about meeting people and building relationships with them. No-one is going to buy anything from you unless they know, like and trust you – and that process takes time.

Here are some tips to help you find networking events:

  1. Ask other people in your network for recommendations. Using your Linked In connections for this is a good idea as you can filter them by location and just send a message out to all your contacts in your area.
  2. Keep a keen eye out for mentions of events on Twitter. Event information is regularly posted by organisers but what is even better is that people will mention events that they are at or have just attended and tell you if they are good or not!
  3. Use the Events tab on Linked In – many people I find don’t even know it’s there. It’s on the More section of the tabs across the landing page. Once you click on Events it will suggest Events you might be interested in based on your profile of Professional Training and Coaching.
  4. Have a look at these sites:
    • Find Networking Events – events by town/city/region/events for women
    • Meet Up – fabulous local groups on just about any topic
    • Twtvite –  Meet your followers/organise and attend Tweet Ups!
    • CIPD Networking
    • Networking Events

Have fun with your Networking!

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