Some Realtors® love conferences, and others just want to crawl in a hole and hide from everyone. Still, you probably end up going to them at least occasionally.
The good news is that going to a conference can be a great opportunity to build your business, practice your prospecting techniques, and make important networking connections.
And it’s doesn’t even require you to be smarmy or desperate!
Discover how to make the most of your next conference below.
Practice Starting Conversations
Talking to prospects can be very intimidating, and it can be hard to even start conversations with strangers in public.
A conference gives you the perfect opportunity to practice striking up conversations in a low-stress environment. There are tons of people you could talk to, and the chances are good you’ll never see them again if you mess up. So go for it!
Even better, make friends with another Realtor® and roleplay prospecting conversations. Sometimes getting feedback on your elevator pitch from another professional can be very enlightening, and giving feedback helps you hone your own presentation as well!
Set Networking Goals
Meeting people and handing out high-quality business cards is an important part of networking at any event. However, it’s even better if you come with specific goals in mind.
Is there a skill you want to learn? Target breakout sessions aimed at that topic, and get to know the speakers and presenters. Introduce yourself and ask if you can stay in touch after the event to ask questions and continue to learn.
Are you working on recruiting new agents to a brokerage? Practice talking about the benefits you have and look for Realtors® who aren’t happy with their current arrangement, or newer agents who may not have a brokerage yet.
Or, you can simply make a list of folks you know will be at the event that you want to meet. You can either approach them after their presentation or ask for an introduction from another contact or friend.
No matter what, you want to make a great first impression. Practice your smile, your handshake, and make sure you have a great business card ready to hand out!
Practice Remembering Names
Some agents have a knack for names, but many do not. If you’re in the forgetful category, use the conference as a chance to practice remembering names.
Repeating the name can help, and so can making an association between an attribute the person has and something else you know about. You can also take their business card and immediately after the conversation write down an identifying detail and an interesting fact.
When you make a specific intention to remember names, you’ll immediately have an easier time. Writing is another great way to remember, and pairing an interesting fact with that person will give your mind a hook to hold onto.
When you can meet people and remember their names, you’ll be able to make better connections with prospects and build trust more quickly. That can’t help but build your business!
Follow Up After the Event
All the networking in the world won’t matter if you don’t keep the ball rolling when you get home. Send an email right after the event reminding your new connection of your name and how you met.
From there, connect with them on social media and keep up via email as well. Drop them a useful article, an interesting tidbit, a referral, or ask a question. Anything you can do to authentically keep in touch!
Once you develop new connections, you may see them at another conference or event. This will give you someone you connect with while you continue to build new relationships!
Ready to get the ball rolling on your networking and prospecting efforts? Update your business cards today!
What tips do you have for folks attending conferences or events? Share in the comments!
This article originally shared on PrinterBees' Real Estate Marketing Magazine.