Enhance Your Business To Business Networking Events
Here are 12 great ways to enhance your business to business networking events so that they remain interesting and are of value to your attendees. Not all might be appropriate to your type of group or event but it is always worth trying out new ideas so that your events remain fresh and enjoyable. Remember business to business networking is about relationship building and whilst some of these ideas might not focus on talking about business they do serve to help the rapport-building process necessary to build good relationships.
Always ensure that your event comprises a variety of activities – this will help to keep interest and help engage each attendee.
- Opportunity for Formal Introductions
Whilst not everyone likes to stand up in front of an audience this is a great way to ensure a group is made aware of whom everyone is. If the event is small enough then everyone may have the chance to speak for 60 seconds (don’t allow this to overrun as everyone else will lose interest). If the event is larger then a business card draw can be done for say 5 people to take this opportunity. Giving attendees a template to work to can help to ensure their introduction is succinct and focused.
- Speakers Of Value
This is a great opportunity for somebody to share with others their knowledge, skills or experience which demonstrates their expertise and raises awareness of what they can offer. However, what is crucial is that any speaker should truly give something of value to their audience – free tips, information, advice or raised awareness which they can then take away. It should not be a sales pitch. The best talks I have seen have been interactive and lasted no longer than 15 minutes in a 2 hour business to business networking session.
- Learning Points
A learning point could be a two or three minute gem of wisdom shared by an attendee. It serves a similar purpose to a speaker slot, just shorter.
- Sponsored Business Card Prize Draws
Invite attendees to ‘sponsor’ an event by donating a prize, ideally relevant to their business. Each attendee has the opportunity to win the prize by entering their business card in the draw. Allow the sponsor to talk for a couple of minutes about their business.
Having table quizzes is a great way of breaking the ice between people seated at the same table and starts the process of rapport building essential for business to business networking.
- Referrals Section
Introducing a slot in the meeting where attendees are encouraged to announce any business or referrals they would like to pass to another present provides a business focus to the event. Many formal networking clubs or ‘referral organisations’ have this as an integral part their meetings.
- Speed Networking
If you want to encourage attendees to mingle more effectively then introducing speed networking as part of your event is a good way of achieving this.
- Good News
Announcing any good news that has arisen from your events is a great motivator for those attending.
- Sharing Something Different
Instead of speaking about each other’s business ask attendees to share with each other something unusual about themselves.
- Introduce Each Other
For smaller groups attendees can pair up to find enough out about someone they don’t know so they can then introduce them to the rest of the group. This really does force individuals to really listen and understand each other.
- Things in Common
Ask participants to find as many things as possible they have in common with the people they are seated or grouped with. Offer a prize for the winning group.
- Rotate Seating
Take control of seating plans and ensure that attendees are seated with different people at subsequent events. Computer software can aid this process.
Reasons To Run A Business Leads Networking Group
Advice For Running Successful Business Networking Events
Planning Your Local Business Networking Event Or Club
Preparation For A Thriving Business Networking Club
Growing Your Business Contacts Networking Group
Business Networking Membership Fees
Consider Why Not To Run Business Networking Events
More About Running Successful Business Networking Events, Clubs And Groups
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