Networking vs. Successful Networking

For any real estate professional interested in advancing their career, networking is an important skill- a form of creating social connections. But it’s no secret that it takes practice to put effective networking into play.

The most overlooked factor of networking is that to really make the most of it, you first have to give. Networking isn’t only about what you get out of the connection, it’s also about what you give. This is one of the biggest reasons why many fail at networking events. If you look at it solely as a quick way to pick up new clients, you are missing out on the bigger picture.

Successful Networking

Successful networking is about meeting new people and offering just as much as you receive. If you constantly try to sell, you’ll be known as as a salesperson and chances are they won’t buy what you’re selling (even if they are in the market somewhere down the line). But if you are known as someone who is constantly giving (information, advice, referrals), you will start to gain a reputation as a trusted source and expert in your industry.

Be aware that we are all networking “at all times”. Look at every social interaction as a way to build your network of contacts and friends. Let this happen naturally: you never know when the person behind you in line at the grocery store is looking to purchase a new condo and looking for a trusty real estate broker to help them navigate the market.

Also, don’t be afraid to add everybody to your list of contacts. It may seem odd to try to add the local gym trainer to your professional network but some day they’ll probably be in the market for a new property. If you’re looking to shed some of that holiday weight or just want to get in shape for the New Year, you’ll be glad you have that person in your network as they may offer you a discount or preferred service. Make sure to have an efficient CRM software that allows you to keep detailed information of your new contacts.  Having the foresight to integrate everybody into your social network is forward thinking for success.

As mentioned before, don’t come on too aggressive when building your circle of influence. Networking should be viewed a social activity and your communication should reflect that. Making a connection should be like talking to an old friend. Trying to manufacture a relationship where one doesn’t exist is a recipe for failure. Creating a new contact is about listening to the other person and hearing what they have to say. They’ll appreciate the fact that you are willing to listen to them.

If you take this approach, building relationships and expanding your sphere of influence through successful networking will become natural. Practice the methods above and act in a professional manner. Keep an eye out for any new connections and relationships you can build and soon you will have a network that any real estate professional would envy.

Tell us your successful networking tips or stories in the comments below.

 

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