Soft Sell = Hard Sell

27th February 2013

By Chris Gape

And I’m fine with it that way.  More people should embrace it.  What I can’t abide is people standing up and pleading.  It’s so car boot.

When you host or attend a networking event, approach it as you would a night out looking to catch the eye of that special girl or guy. No, not by expecting 4th base before last orders, but by going with the flow, making connections, having a chat, getting to know the people around you.

Yes, you want to tell to them what you do. You want to know what they do too. But good networking works best by creating relationships with people who may want to use you in the future or be used by you – enough with the night out analogy.

It’s true though. People buy people, especially in PR but in so many other sectors too. 

We’ve had great success by running elitist lunch clubs for MDs and Chief Execs where they know they won’t have a business card welded into their palm within a heartbeat of shaking a hand. But what’s good for board directors is good for everyone else too.

It’s so simple.  You make people like you first. 

So, once you’ve sidled up to someone, ensure it make it a two way conversation.  Be interested and interesting.  Don’t switch off the moment you find out they already have a solicitor, banker or baker – yes, I’m talking to you and you and you.  They might fall out with them and because you didn’t talk about yourself constantly and seemed genuinely interested in them at that networking jolly a few months back, they may give you a call.

And don’t look past them.  So rude.

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