In the journalistic spirit of ‘throwback thursday,’ aka #tbt I share with you my blog post originally published March 29, 2013.
If you’ve been in some time as an independent contractor or solopreneur for any company, you may have had your try at attending networking events. People go to these things to drum up business and get to know people and eventually hope to sell their products or services.
Wednesday, is my networking day. I have been going to this group regularly and truly have been enjoying it. Last week, I won the slot to present for 8 minutes. In the 8 minutes, we can talk about anything we want. From what I have seen, the default is an 8 min commercial of one’s business. In a nutshell, 8 minutes of shameless plug 🙂
As I prepped my PowerPoint in the days prior to my 8 minute talk (I’ve heard people hate PowerPoint), I thought, how can I not make this suck? Then it came to me: I was going to provide value.
The past month, every week, they have heard my 30 second commercial. They know what I do, they know what I sell. So oh joy! or oh bore, 8 minutes of that this week? I should just play them one of my YouTube videos and sit down.
But this is my 8 min chance to sell me, so what should I do? I’m expected to talk about me, but should I?I did do what they expected but not much… and with a twist.
I briefly introduced me, presented my company’s founder and mission statement, one of our fundraiser results, the products, and why I do what I do.
Then I transitioned to what I have learned the past year and how I was able to make changes that they too can make to grow their business. I saw the attention focus on me and people were more interested in listening. Was I just imagining this. Maybe. I had their attention and I brought value to them because it was something that can help them and not just me telling them to buy from me. I brought them value (to them instead of to me and my products.
The next time you are to asked to talk about you for anything more than 30 seconds at a networking event, I highly recommend you bring your value, not just product. Your business and the people around you will appreciate you.