The real networking happens with the follow-up
By Lucy Rosen
Networking events are a great way to expand your professional network and meet new people. However, the true value of networking events lies in the follow-up.
Following up with someone you meet at a networking event is essential for building a strong professional relationship. By connecting on LinkedIn, sending a personalized email, referencing something from your conversation, proposing a specific next step, being respectful of their time and following up in a timely manner, you can make a lasting impression and set the stage for future collaborations and opportunities.
Here are some best practices for following up:
Connect on LinkedIn
One of the easiest, most effective ways to follow up is to connect on LinkedIn. This allows you to keep in touch and stay up to date on each other’s professional accomplishments and interests.
Send a personalized email
Personalized email is a great way to show that you value your new connection. In your email be sure to mention where you met, and express interest in staying in touch.
Reference your conversation
In following up it’s helpful to reference something from your conversation that will remind the person of you and the context in which you met. This could be a shared interest, a professional accomplishment or something else that stood out from your conversation.
Propose a next step
Keep the momentum going by proposing a specific next step in your follow-up. This could be as simple as scheduling a coffee meeting, attending another networking event or collaborating on a project.
Be respectful of their time
Remember the person you’re following up with has a busy schedule. Be respectful of their time, and keep your follow-up message concise.
Follow up in a timely manner
Maximize the impact of your follow-up by reaching out within 24-48 hours
of the networking event.