Professional networking has become an important staple in today's business world. Gone are the days of gathering business cards and putting them in a Rolodex to save them until a favor is needed. Networking now involves staying connected via social media, exchanging information, promoting products and services, and searching for career opportunities.
Social platforms like LinkedIn and professional industry groups frequently host networking events that allows members to connect with key influencers to expand their business and pitch new ideas. But with the popularity of social platforms, networking as we know it has evolved into a more integrated approach.
In the past, networking events had a conventional setting where attendees chatted in between breaks with no opportunity to make connections. Events are now more interactive and sought after by professionals and recent graduates looking to build their professional network and reach the pinnacle of success.
Why is this? LinkedIn influencers and college professors stress how vital networking is to one's career. Individuals understand the importance of connecting with their industry peers and reps from prospective companies that will provide them with insight, knowledge and the resources they need.
For this reason, as an event organizer it is important to host networking events to serve participants better.
Top Five Reasons Event Organizers Should Plan Networking Events
1. Brand building and market positioning
Professionals seek networking events that can expand their network with reputable connections such as executives and talent recruiters that can increase their business and propel their career.
Hosting an event that will allow attendees to make connections that matter, is key to your positioning in the marketplace.
An engaging atmosphere with a format providing ample face to face time is a sure way to have a successful networking event that will be well sought after.
2. Increase attendee retention and prospects
A well planned networking event will result in the best PR — word of mouth.
Satisfied attendees share their experiences via word of mouth. They will inform their personal and professional networks on how beneficial attending your event was, which will lead to receiving more prospects to attend your next event.
Guests will see the value of attending your events and will accept future invitations.
3. Repeat and maximize reach
Hosting a great networking events will give you the opportunity to showcase it as an annual event, which in turn will build your brand as one that offers the best event networking experience.
Organizing your events to connect specific groups and industries can position your event as the go to networking event of the year. This can attract a targeted network for more powerful collaborations.
4. Allow opportunity for B2B partnerships
Maximizing your reach can lead to B2B partnerships for your events. Hosting industry specific events can open the door to partner with brands that cater to your target audience. For example, a large IT firm could take notice of the large attendee base for a networking event you host for IT professionals. The firm sees your event as a great opportunity to increase their brand visibility by partnering with you to host your annual event.
Partnerships are also great for decreasing event production costs.
5. Create new business opportunities
Now that the word is out that you host the best networking events ever, you could be hired to produce networking events for companies. Many firms hire consultants to plan turnkey events, taking the leg work out of planning.
Hosting professional networking events has many benefits for event organizers. In addition to building brand awareness, expanding your reach, and positioning your event as the who's who of networking events in the industry, you provide professionals with the opportunity to connect with other like-minded individuals that can advance their career and be a valuable resource.Share on: