Business networking is more than just a clever tactic that most businesses use to draw in more clientele. For many small businesses that rely upon word of mouth, proper networking skills are completely necessary for the continued success and even existence of the company. Business networking is the fundamental act of referring business to other businesses, and in the process doing the same for you. Understanding how to give quality referrals is an art form in itself, and something that is extremely important in business networking matters. The old adage of, “I’ll scratch your back, if you scratch mine”, has never applied to anything more than to business networking.
Business networking, however, takes many forms, and you just might not realize how common it is. Whether a business is cold calling some of its clients on the phone, or meeting other business professionals for dinner or lunch, the networking is always taking place. Successful networking leads to referral business, new business ideas, and can help you to learn from other professionals in your field. Many businesses choose to become part of networking organizations such as different local chambers of commerce in their selected area. These organizations are excellent ways for business owners to participate in business advocacy and lobbying efforts, and offer a way for business owners to cooperate for their own protection. They often have meet and greet sessions where business leaders can meet together to discuss certain business topics that might be affecting them, the current business climate in their area, and formulate collective plans for the future.
Some say that up to 70 % of new companies get their business through word of mouth. Networking allows you the opportunity to formally introduce yourself and your business, to other business professionals in your area, to not only get to know them, but to get to know the services they offer as well. If business leaders can meet you and can trust you, they will have no problem sending business your way, and no problem receiving some from you. This is all part of the relationship building process that is so vital to successful business networking. It is a relationship built on trust and mutual interest. Continue Reading