Do I need a networking group?
This is a fair business question and while we tend to want to answer yes very quickly, lets check the facts. While GBN, or Great Business Networking, has many members from various industries, backgrounds, and stages of business we have found that having a strong networking group can benefit almost all professionals if the members of their group are beneficial to them. What does that mean? Not all groups are the same. For example, a commercial financing professional or a commercial real estate agent would get far more leads in a group of only Business to Business professionals than a group of professionals that sell to consumers. Why? The individual referrals would typically be decision makers instead of friends or family of other groups.
So we feel that it is vital to have a networking group for all professionals. Here are some other facts to think about.. You may have already built a large book of business, so getting referrals may not necessarily help you at this time. But being in a networking group is so much more than that. A networking group can help you to have a reputable team of professionals to use as resources for your clients. By having that resource team in place you now have the ability to boost your value to your clients because they can count on you to help them with all of their needs.
Or perhaps you say you don’t have the time, you can spend your money and time elsewhere. We would beg to differ. With the low rates at Great Business Networking and fairly low time investment, your potential return on investment is drastically higher. Networking is vital to any businesses’ success and networking groups are generally the lowest cost of advertising you can do with the highest profit yields, not to mention the quality friendships you develop in the process.
A networking group can provide so much more value than just referrals. Networking groups are here to help you practice your 60 second commercial every week, to share innovative ideas with to see what could help your business the most, to practice presenting your services/products to a diverse background base, opportunities to learn about sales and business, and much more.
So, now that you know that there is more value to a networking group than JUST referrals and you know it’s useful to be in a group… how do you find the right group for you. First, you need to know what are the best referral partners for your business (Business to Consumer, Business to Business, Women, Veterans, etc). Second, you need to see what is available in your surrounding area and visit the groups. Lastly, if you cannot find a group that fits your needs or has a position open for you, contact us to learn how to start a group and develop your own networking team.
So, in summary…
Do you need a networking group? Yes.
Will the right networking group help your business? Yes, no doubt about it.
How do you get started? Search for groups near you or contact us if you need help starting a group of your own.
Lastly, networking is about building strong business friendships and helping each other be successful. So have fun and go into networking with a servant leadership mindset.
Article written by Alan Thompson. CEO of Great Business Networking.