Sending an email is one thing, but maintaining a networking relationship is a whole other kettle of fish. Imposter syndrome gets in the way and it’s also very tempting to cut ties as soon as things didn’t work out the way you wanted them to the first time around.
However, coming out of lockdown, it’s important that we maintain as many networking relationships as possible in order to secure potential work in the long run.
Here are some Dos and Don’ts when it comes to networking and following up with potential clients.
Keep up passive contact on social media
Like their photos, react to their stories and comment on their videos. Small gestures such as these show regular engagement and will keep your name fresh in the minds of potential clients.
Email as soon as
Once a potential client offers their contact details to you, try and get in contact as soon as you can. The fresher you are in their memory, the more likely they’ll prioritise you.
Clients are busy people and just because they didn’t respond it doesn’t mean that they aren’t a fan of your work. Keep trying to connect – within reason – and the client will admire your persistence.
Make it look one-sided
If it’s clear that you’re reaching out to a client simply because their advice and work will benefit you, the likelihood of winning work is slim. The ‘You, Me, Us’ email format is a great way to subtly demonstrate that a networking relationship will benefit and enrichen both parties. Start by demonstrating your knowledge of the client, then your own experience and skills and how the two will marry well.
Cut off the relationship because you didn’t get what you wanted the first time round
It’s so easy to want to write someone off, especially if they’ve ignored three emails in a row but really try to avoid cutting them off altogether. You never know where a lead may lead; for example, that client you emailed three times may get back to after six months about potential work. You just never know where contacts may take you.