At the moment, we’re happily preparing for the CAA Education Expo to be held April 30th at the Santa Clara Convention Center (come see us in booth 614!) and as always, it gets us thinking about how these events can work for us in terms of building our business through networking. We love to attend events and are always promoting doing so to both our clients and candidates. When you attend an event, you likely not only get to learn something new about your industry (as events are typically educational in one way or anther) but you also get the opportunity to really engage with the people on your ‘target list’ -those individuals who are either potential customers or have access to potential customers.
Long story short, I wrote about the importance of industry events (and how to find them) some time ago and wanted to pull it out of the archives before the summer event season gets going in order to encourage each of you to get out there and network!
Industry events are an important part of one’s growth in their line of work. While it can be difficult to schedule in an event with all your other duties, the rewards you can receive (such as meeting industry leaders, acquiring new knowledge that can improve your skills, and/or promoting your company) have the potential to move you higher up the business ladder.
We often hear that it’s ‘Not What You Know, But Who You Know.’ If this is occasionally true (because let’s not discount the fact that a strong skill-set will get you far!) then networking with the community of your industry can prove to be beneficial to you if you are looking to move into a new position, or simply want to make new contacts in order to promote your business. At the very least, you can demonstrate your knowledge and advertise your expertise with the people who can contribute to the growth of profession or business.
And speaking of expertise, what better way to increase all the knowledge you already possess than to attend functions that give you the all the latest, up-to-date information available in your trade? And, not only are many events designed to inform you, topics that includes increasing your business are often presented in a workshop manner in which you’ll not only been given examples of how a particular tool has been proven effective, but also the way in which you can utilize it to your own advantage!
Networking is also a great form of advertising your company. We all know that branding is only effective if our target audience is exposed to it, and therefore meeting with potential consumers is paramount. But use it not only as an opportunity to spread the word about your company but also as a way to build a relationship with your consumers. You may notice familiar faces at these events as you begin to attend them regularly. Use this as your chance to get to know people on a more personal level; it can only increase your chances of being relied upon when they have a need!
Wondering how to get started? The first place you should go is the Associations that are relevant to your industry. In our case, it’s property management and therefore we belong to, and attend events by, the Rental Housing Association (RHA) of Sacramento, California Apartment Association (CAA), and many more, and the events they have held, such as trade shows and luncheons, have proved an invaluable source of information and opportunities to network.
Another great place to get associated with your industry’s community is LinkedIn Groups. Simply by joining a few relevant groups can open the door to expanding your brand and skills tremendously. You’ll receive emails about current topics of discussion, invites to events, as well as the opportunity to reach out individually to these people, great for the follow-up message after meeting them at a luncheon!
If you’re looking for opportunities to strengthen your relevance to your business community, and we all should be, then attending events should be at the top of your list! The knowledge you’ll gain, as well as the people you meet, can only serve to boost your business or marketability!
Happy Event Browsing!
Jessie Williams, Marketing Coordinator