The digital age has certainly changed the way that people think about networking. It’s true that online networking sites are powerful tools and that you should be using them. However, it’s also important to know how to make in-person connections so that you can build strong ties with key contacts. Take a look at the following tips for making in-person connections in the digital age.
Research Potential Connections
It can actually be very smart to take the time to research potential connections that you would like to make. If you know of a few people in the industry that you’d like to meet, then doing a little bit of research might make it easier to break the ice. You can learn about a few key things and will have more to talk about that way. It’s just smart to do this when you have certain connections in mind so that you can make things work.
Attend Live Networking Events
Attending live networking events is a key part of meeting people offline. If you want to meet other professionals in your industry, then you should always keep an eye out for live events in your area. Depending on the circumstances, it might even be beneficial to travel a bit to attend specific networking events. You need to take advantage of these networking events so that you can build your list of contacts.
It’s also smart to try to arrive early so that you can make the most of the events. Arriving late limits your ability to interact with others and being one of the first people there shows initiative. You might be able to make very useful connections if you use this method. Just keep your eyes open and look for live events that will benefit you.
Go Out to Lunch with People
You also need to maintain your connections after you have made them. Follow up with contacts and invite them out to lunch every so often if it’s practical to do so. If your connections live or work close enough to your location, then it can be very helpful to build in-person bonds. When in-person interactions aren’t possible, it can be positive to at least exchange messages from time to time.