Last week I mentioned that I went to the USA for two conventions. I also visited Los Angeles and surroundings in June this year.
Since I’m from Belgium, my network in the USA is not that large (yet), especially when visiting one specific place. But still I was able to meet many people face to face.
So how did I manage to do this? Via my online networks.
This was my strategy:
1) Define my goals on the trips. It was a business trip and not a holiday.
2) Search in my online networks (www.ecademy.com, www.linkedin.com, www.openbc.com, www.ryze.com) who lives in the neighbourhood of the place I was going to visit
3) Search in my online networks who might be interested in going to the same events
4) Write an e-mail to let them know I was coming over, clearly explain my goals and ask them who they know that would be interesting for me to meet (and also would be interested to meet me). Also ask what you can do for them.
5) Post the same message in forums on the online networks
6) To all the people who responded: ask to write one e-mail to connect me with the person they thought of
7) After receiving the “connection e-mail”: make an appointment with this person to meet each other in person
This approach works fantastic. Try it yourself !
One of the side effects of this approach was that the people I was able to meet, sometimes organised small networking events with other people and/or introduced me to their contacts. So it works exponentially. One of the magics of networking 😉
Have a great networking day !
PS: you will not be able to meet everybody or some people you initially contacted won’t be able to help you. Don’t consider this as a waste of time. You took the initiative to connect and everybody appreciates that.