The Importance of Face-to-Face Networking

With the increased use of social media, face to face meetings seem to be a ‘thing of the past’ to many of today’s marketers. In truth, just the opposite is the case. Today, because face to face meetings are rare, you can stand out by engaging clients one on one, in their own environment or at business events.

Here are some of the reasons you should be seeing clients and potential clients in person:

Immediate feedback –

It’s virtually impossible to gauge a customer’s reaction to your product or service via an email or Skype. You don’t get that immediate and direct reaction that you do in person. It’s also easy to misinterpret a person’s tone or demeanour through email. An abrupt response to your proposal may simply be the person’s style or they are having a bad day – but you think the proposal is dead. This makes it very easy to misconstrue someone’s intent or what they were saying. A face to face meeting lets you discuss things more openly in a 2-way conversation, something not possible via email, and to be frank, still difficult via the phone. Sometimes there is simply no substitute for face to face.

The personal touch –

Most of us simply come across better in person than online – email does not let your personality shine through. email is very generic and basically impersonal,
no matter how fancy your sig file might be. In person, especially in some industries, is always going to boost your sales.

Builds stronger relationships and long-term trust –

Human connection makes it easier to build trust and credibility. The old phrase ‘Putting a face to a name’ is so very true – there is some small part of most of us that never truly trusts the person that is only a sig file on the email as much as the person you are shaking hands with at the evening’s event. It’s always good to see how they connect with others as well – it tells you (and them) how they will interact with referrals you might send their way.

Avoid misunderstandings –

It is sometimes difficult to explain concepts via email, nuances get lost and the entire message can be misunderstood or misinterpreted, and things can quickly spiral out of control. Much easier to fix in person.

When you have face-to-face conversations, you have a better opportunity to explain your position to help people come to an agreement on things. You can specifically tailor your message to the audience of who you are speaking to instead of such a large group of people with wildly different points of view.

Using social media to network is great too, but it’s still important to get out there and make personal connections. Whether it be at local business events or you find ways to link up with your online connections, it’s going to be very important to create face-to-face meetings to strengthen those connections. These fellows met at events and help each other out every chance they get:

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