Networking Is A Great Way To Increase Business

By
Mortgage and Lending with George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages Connecticut NMLS #65149

Anyone who follows my blog knows one of my favorite things to do is to get out and Network.  I go to as many Business After Hour events as I possibly can, and try to get to as many community events as possible as well.  I have found in my 38 plus years in sales that nothing takes the place of what use to be referred to as getting out and "Pressing The Flesh".  Today "Pressing The Flesh" has been replaced by a much more politically correct word "Networking", and I am a firm believer Networking Is A Great Way To Increase Business.

Because of my strong belief in Networking, I try to blog about it from time to time to impress on others the importance of it.  When I do blog about Networking I like to share what has worked well for me in utilizing Networking as a way to increase my business.  It is important to keep in mind as you read my suggestions below, not all of these will be possible to do by everyone, and some will be specific to the point in life we are in.  I will explain this further in a minute.

Because I enjoy Networking, I have developed my skills through the years.  As a result there are a few things I have learned on how to be more effective and efficient at Networking which I will try to share, and hopefully convince others Networking Is A Great Way To Increase Business.  Basically I have six very basic and simple tips which I would like to share which anyone can do.

  • Join Several Groups, Organizations, And Appropriate Ways To Network With Them:  You not only need to be out in the community, you need to be in contact with various segments of the community as well.  The best way I have found to do this is to join, and be involved with different groups and organization within the community.  In other words don’t put all your eggs in one basket.  Some groups I feel are very effective are:
    • The Chambers of Commerce
    • Service Clubs like - The Rotary, Exchange, Kiwanis, Lions, and Elks
    • Country Clubs
    • A Church or Temple, etc.
    • PTO, PTA, or other School Organizations
    • Park & Rec Programs
    • Little League
    • Youth Soccer
    • Pop Warner Football
    • Youth Basketball
    • Boy/Girl Scouts
    • Dance
    • Performing Arts
    • Martial Arts Classes

These are just a few of the many Groups and Organization in most communities.  Most people I know who are good at networking, are also people who want to and enjoy being around others and helping them.  The more you do, the more of a connection you will make in the community.

As I mentioned earlier, It is important to keep in mind as you read my suggestions below, that not all of these will be possible to do by everyone, and some will be specific to the point in life we are in.  For example I no longer have young children in the house, so my involvement in Park & Rec Sports, Boy Scouts, PTO/PTA no longer apply to me, but they have formed relationships for me in the past which I still apply in my life today.

  • Develop Good Referral Sources:  These are other professionals or businesses, who are in other professions who you can refer others to, and who will in turn refer others to you.  For example for me it would be:
    • Realtors
    • Attorneys
    • Insurance Agents
    • Handyman
    • Home Inspectors
    • CPA's
    • Financial Advises
    • And believe it or not even other Loan Originators as well.

You also need to be ready at all times to refer these referral sources, by making sure you have their contact information handy at all times.  Carry some of their business cards with you, or have some of your business cards with these referral sources listed on the back.  Ask your referral sources to do the same for you, after all if you refer clients to them, they should refer clients to you.

  • Acknowledge Referral Sources Or Past Customers When They Refer A Client To You:   Pick up the phone and say thank you, or send a hand written note.  Neither of these things cost must, or take much time, but there effectiveness is priceless.
  • Learn What Is Appropriate And What Is Not For Each Group – A proper way to network within one group may not be appropriate for another.  Handing out business cards maybe appropriate at a Chamber event, or at service group like the Rotary, Exchange, and Kiwanis clubs, but not appropriate in a Church.
  • Networking Is Not About Being Pushy -  It is about developing relationships, and constantly working on improving those relationships. It is also not about seeing how many business cards you can pass out at each event.  Yes we need to be prepared to give our business to those we meet, but it needs to be done in the process of developing a relationship with them.  This brings me to my last point.
  • Develop Quality Relationships -  Quality Relationships are developed through bring value to those you are networking with.  This will not only result in receiving repeated referrals and business, it will also result in giving referrals to others as well.

Networking is something I have been sold on since my introduction into sales 38 plus years ago, and I am a firm believer that Networking Is A Great Way To Increase Business.  My belief in Networking is because of the results in increased business though out the years.  I am a firm believer that nothing replaces "Pressing The Flesh". 

 

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 Info about the author:

George Souto NMLS# 65149 is a Loan Originator who can assist you with all your #FHA, #CHFA, and #Conventional #mortgage needs in Connecticut. George resides in Middlesex County which includes #Middletown, #Middlefield, #Durham, #Cromwell, #Portland, #Higganum, #Haddam, #East Haddam,# Chester, #Deep River, and #Essex. George can be contacted at (860) 573-1308 or gsouto@mccuemortgage.com

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Re-Bloggged 4 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Debbie Gartner 08/24/2013 04:39 AM
  2. Brian Sharkey | Broker | GRI | South Florida's #1 Broker 08/24/2013 12:53 PM
  3. Lenn Harley 08/25/2013 03:30 AM
  4. Barbara Hensley 08/25/2013 05:14 AM
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Comments 55 New Comment

Show All Comments
Rainmaker
333,766
Brian Sharkey | Broker | GRI | South Florida's #1 Broker
SharkeyRE - #SouthFloridaBroker
SharkeyRE LLC

George, These are all great networking ideas, and I am going to bookmark this one for sure to make sure I hold myself accountable.  Thanks for posting.  Reblogged.   The best advice you gave was:

"Acknowledge Referral Sources Or Past Customers When They Refer A Client To You:   Pick up the phone and say thank you, or send a hand written note.  Neither of these things cost must, or take much time, but there effectiveness is priceless."

August 24, 2013 12:52 PM
Rainer
123,548
Dinah Stallworth
NATCHITOCHES, LA HOMES FOR SALE
Priority Real Estate LLC - 800.978.4847

George,

I agree, networking is an excellent way to generate business.   Thanks for the reminder, great post.

August 24, 2013 02:01 PM
Rainmaker
191,987
Jay & Michelle Lieberman
Creating Calm in the Buying and Selling Chaos
Keller Williams Realty - Westlake Village, CA

You are so right.  I need to network more than I do.  Great reminder post for me.  Thanks.

August 24, 2013 04:31 PM
Rainer
372,869
Bill Reddington
Destin Florida Real Estate
Re/max Southern Realty

Used to walk the beach everyday. Surprising the number of people you meet at sunrise. I have a tendancy to network with the vendors I use. All part of the sphere.

August 24, 2013 05:33 PM
Rainmaker
185,485
Claude Labbe
Realty for Your Busy Life
Real Living | At Home

Hi George,

A few more options:

* neighborhood associations (here in DC, our local neighborhood groups are always working to get something to happen or something to stop, but if the group is always working, then you are always working with them)

*BNI, which is a regimented referral network, for those who are serious...but it helped me get over being shy about myself

* I joined a pet therapy program (or rather, my dog did)....so I often hang with the other dogs and their owners

* I have a friend who's an avid bowler, and so, if I bowled, or played cards or stopped to be social for awhile, those would be other options to consider.

 

Many options, not alway enough time

August 24, 2013 07:07 PM
Rainmaker
980,469
Nick T Pappas
Madison & Huntsville Alabama Real Estate Resource
Assoc. Broker/Broker ABR, SFR, e-Pro, @Homes Realty Group, Huntsville AL

George, absolutely networking is very important and I'll stress one point you made about it and that is "it's not about being pushy".  Just get out there and meet people...I also always keep cards for service providers at hand.

August 24, 2013 08:29 PM
Ambassador
921,514
Ralph Gorgoglione
California Real Estate (800) 591-6121
John Aaroe Group

George, thanks for posting such an excellent blog. The value of networking truly can change the dynamics of increasing one's business... good discussion too about what types of community venues are relevant based on what stage of life one is in.

August 24, 2013 10:03 PM
Rainmaker
342,312
Pete X-Investment to Luxury, Huntington Beach, CA -GRI-MCNE 714.459.2017 OCLister.com
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide
X Group Real Estate Advocates
It's all about networking and how well one does it. Always look for unique networking opportunities to have that edge.
August 24, 2013 10:33 PM
Rainmaker
543,360
Wayne Johnson
San Antonio REALTOR, San Antonio Homes For Sale
Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS®

George-I like your statement that networking is not about being pushy. I've observed some approaching networking events same as high pressure selling. That doesn't work.

August 24, 2013 10:51 PM
Rainer
137,248
Jane Chaulklin-Schott
TeamConnect Luxury Homes - Orlando, Florida, 32836
TEAMCONNECT REALTY - (407) 394-9766
George ~ Networking is essentially vital to business success especially in a field such as real estate. It is all about meeting others and building relationships - an essential component. I have seen that in its natural setting, for example, Little League ball games, is one way it works well. Dashing from the office to your child's weekly game - name tag still in place - others get to know you as you get to know them. It is a weekly affair - consistent and in a casual way. Comes across quite sincere because it is. Also, one of my first brokers suggested keeping our name tag on during the day - especially grocery shopping or in our daily community life. George, good post, good suggestions, - great reminder.
August 25, 2013 02:19 AM
Rainer
16,024
Audrey Hardy
Realtor-Exit Realty Consultants
Exit Realty Consultants
That's a great starting list of networking events. There are a few there I'm going to have to try out.
August 25, 2013 04:11 AM
Ambassador
980,033
Debbie Reynolds
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent
Prudential PenFed Realty, "The Real Debbie Reynolds" Your Clarksville Real Estate Professional, 931-920-6730

George,I said this to my agents over and over. You have to get in front of people and build the relationships. It is a proven method of making connections for your future business.

August 25, 2013 05:13 AM
Rainmaker
1,201,260
Richie Alan Naggar Author PEARLS SERIES of books
on LIFE and LOVE plus Real Estate too!
People first then business! Ran Right Realty Riverside, Ca

As long as it is kept real, it remains inviting and productive...I have seen mixers where the people were present in body...not spirit

August 25, 2013 07:27 AM
Rainer
186,728
Frank Harper
Associate Broker, Realtor, GRI, SFR.
Rocky Mountain Real Estate

Netwoking is great....But don't forget why you are networking!

 

August 25, 2013 09:00 AM
Rainmaker
87,290
Debi McKamie
Carbajal Realty Inc.

Networking is great as long as we remain in the relationship building process.  It will not benefit you to treat networking events as a race to hand out the most business cards.

August 25, 2013 09:31 AM
Rainer
5,822
MyInBoxLeads.com
Building your Business One Lead at a Time
MyInBoxLeads.com
I agree 100% I belong to BNI Clark County Chapter and we have passed $2,000,000 in referral business since last October. It is a great group and GROWING!!!
August 25, 2013 12:15 PM
Ambassador
1,431,918
Jennifer Fivelsdal
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571

George I know networking is such a part of what you do.   It is one of the most effective way to be top of mind when people are looking for the service you offer.

Have a great week.

August 25, 2013 11:04 PM
Rainmaker
575,070
Patricia Feager, MBA, GRI, Cert Negotiations Expert, Military Relo Prof
The Little REALTOR® That Could
Keller Williams Realty

George,

As always, you provide excellent advice and friends you have many! Look how many reply to your posts on a regularr basis.

You're a great friend of many.

August 26, 2013 12:47 PM
Rainmaker
71,356
Deb McNeill
Fort Worth Real Estate
Flying M Team Small World Realty Fort Worth, Tx

I believe in networking, but I do want it to be authentic, as well. One of my nicest sales came from a gal I met in a writer's group.

It's not just showing up, shaking hands, and passing out cards, it's being active and involved in the group--that takes committment, effort, and passion.

Good post!

August 28, 2013 11:04 AM
Rainer
7,538
Beth Bromund

Thanks for the great tips!  I especially like "Networking is not about being pushy - it's about developing relationships."

Networking Is Not About Being Pushy -  It is about developing relationships - See more at: http://activerain.com/blogsview/3820276/networking-is-a-great-way-to-increase-business#sthash.osOmr1f2.dpuf
January 29, 2014 03:18 PM
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Ambassador
1,796,603

George Souto

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