As the founder of the Appleton REIA (Real Estate Investors Association) and a huge proponent of ALL local REIA’s, I know firsthand how important networking is when it comes to growing your real estate investing career.
But just showing up as these events is one thing - knowing how to fully take advantage of the opportunities of real estate networking events is another thing altogether. Even if you are a real estate investing newbie, here are 10 tips to help you network like a pro!
1. Put Your Phone Away
We all have business we could be attending to, but let your voicemail (or staff if you have it) do the work while you are at the event. You are there to network, so concentrate on that and not on taking calls.
2. Paid Events Are Where It’s At
If you want to deal with more serious people, try to attend more serious events. And people who pay to visit an event or are paid members are usually more serious in general.
3. Agents Aren’t Your Priority
If you are a real estate agent, don’t be afraid to say hi to other agents - just don’t spend a ton of time interacting, because, frankly, you aren’t there to meet other agents, right?
4. Take Cards Whenever Possible
Concentrate on taking business cards, not giving them. There’s a subtle difference here, but you can have a great networking event without even giving out any cards.
5. Show Initiative
Make sure to follow up with your contacts immediately. A quick call and an mutual permission to stay in touch is a great way to start a mutually beneficial relationship.
6. Log Contacts Immediately
You don’t want to lose track of a contact, so make sure to put them into your computer, phone, or contact management program immediately!
7. Meet New People - Not Old
You’ll end up seeing many of the same people if you go to events on a regular basis, but come to a mutual agreement with these people that you are there to meet new people and not there for catchup/social hour. You can always meet for social time later on.
8. Create Your Own Events
Sure, we’re getting a little advanced here, but creating your own events down the road should be a goal! As you become an expert, you will have expertise to offer - so don’t be afraid to set the goal of becoming enough of an authority to start teaching others what you are doing yourself, and your contacts will grow exponentially as a result.
9. Be a Team Player
If you are the type of person who is always looking to help others, you’ll go a long way. Don’t be the person who is just out for themselves! If you are looking out for others and trying to create win-win situations, you will certainly develop a positive reputation that will follow you wherever you go!
10. Drink Less, Have Fun More!
Many of these events have a “mixer” element to them and serve alcohol. But keep it light and don’t overdo the drinking - you can always indulge after.
At the same time, make sure you are having FUN while you network. The truth is, people gravitate to people who bring a little fun into their lives, and your attitude will shine through and the more you enjoy yourself, the more others will want to do business with you!
In the Appleton, Wisconsin, Area? Visit us at www.appletonreia.com!