As business people, we all know the potential downfall putting all your eggs in one basket (AKA having one client or customer make up too large of a percentage of your company’s income). Does the same hold true for networking?
Some organizations stipulate exclusivity as a part of the terms for being in their networking group. And that does make sense on some levels. After all, you do want members to pass leads and referrals to each other. Yet what if the networking group members in your sphere of influence don’t pass you leads or referrals right away? What if after a few referrals, the leads stop?
At My Pinnacle Network, we feel networking should resemble a marketing plan. The more successful plans include a mix of things—PR, advertising, social media, e-mail marketing, etc. All those tools promote your business and typically complement the other—e.g. posting your press release on your Facebook page and tweeting coverage. Your networking efforts are the same.
It’s great to make a networking group your primary leads/referral vehicle. But that should not preclude you from attending other networking events, being a member of a chamber or informal networking with people you knew from previous work and business efforts—even if it conflicts with professions of members of your networking group. The reality is utilizing multiple networking vehicles makes you more valuable to members of your primary networking group?
Why, you might ask? By putting your networking eggs in several baskets, the more likely you are to meet people who you can be leads/referrals for your business and the people in your primary networking group.