How to Network at In-Person Events

How To Network Effectively At In-Person Events?

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Posted on March 22, 2023

In-person events can be an excellent opportunity to network and meet new people – a virtual job fair, a workshop, or a casual product launch event.

But how do you make sure that you are networking effectively? 

It’s all about being proactive and making the most of the opportunities presented to you. 

While there is ample networking scope for B2C brands, B2B businesses often face networking challenges as their content and business goals don’t drive majority engagement from their ideal audience.

Let’s begin with some tips to help you network at in-person events: 

  • Be approachable

Smile and make eye contact with people you meet. This will make them more likely to open up and start a conversation. 

  • Be prepared

Have a few conversation starters ready, and ensure you can create a well-written elevator pitch. This will help you stand out and make a good impression.

  • Be valuable

Please don’tdon’t make people feel like they are wasting their time talking to you and not deriving anything of value. Be sure to add value to your conversation but don’tdon’t push too much for “”praise”” in return. 

Once you meet all these criteria, you can network effectively at in-person events, approach good leads, convert them faster, and retain them longer – and that’sthat’s the core of your customer satisfaction strategy. 

These strategies often involve customer feedback, website surveys, and service initiatives tailored to meet the customer’scustomer’s needs. Using customer satisfaction strategies, your brand can maintain a loyal customer base and increase overall customer retention.

Research The Event

If you want to network effectively at an in-person event, it is essential to research what the event is about beforehand. 

For example, if it’sit’s a book launch, you need a brief idea about the book’sbook’s subject and the author’sauthor’s life history and background. 

A brief idea about the event you will attend keeps you informed about its timeline and subjects and enables you to interact with the other attendees seamlessly.

If you still need to figure out how to research, search for instructional videos regarding the event’sevent’s topic because videos are easy.

Arrive Early

It’s always a good idea to arrive early for in-person events as it gives you an edge over the others. We are not asking you to come an hour earlier, but at least be among the first ten or fifteen people to attend the event.

A significant part of networking happens when the event is less crowded, and the best part – you get noticed by those few people.

This can be your golden chance to engage effectively – by introducing yourself to them, telling them what you do, and adding them to your LinkedIn connections or your email lists. Once we build a relationship with them, it is easier to start a conversation with them again.

Don’t Sell

Before going to the event, remember that you’re not going there as a salesperson but as a guest. No matter how great you are at cold pitching and sales strategies, it’s not the place.

It’s a place to hone your networking skills – and once you have built a great network, selling wouldn’t be much of a hassle.

If you toss sales jargon and talk about how you skyrocketed one client’s growth – it won’t take too long for the others to spot you. 

Once others get your clingy salesperson vibe, they will hardly be interested in having genuine conversations with you anymore.

So, beware –  switch off your salesperson mode before coming to an event!

Prepare An Intro

How do you stand out among the rest when there are so many people at the event? That’s where your intro comes into play and sets you apart from the crowd. 

Whether your goal is to get good prospects or build a good professional relationship, it hardly matters – a good introduction is the key to your success at in-person events like these.

We suggest preparing an introduction that discusses who you are, what you do, and your interests. 

For example, “Hello, my name is [Name], and I’m a [profession]. I’ve been in this industry for [time period]. I’m passionate about [hobby] and [hobby], and I’m always looking for ways to develop my skills in these areas further. I also enjoy [interest] in my spare time and am always open to meeting new people and learning new things!

But here’s the drill – even if you manage to give quite a good introduction, most of them will likely look you up online before connecting with you. 

How would you ensure that they get a positive vibe about you online? Well, you can invest in one of the best reputation management tools. With the right reputation management tool, you can control your online reputation and ensure that people have the best possible impression of you. These tools can help you monitor what is being said about you online and allow you to quickly respond to any negative feedback and turn around the sentiment.

But it’s not enough if your audience engages with your brand and still needs to learn about your company’s existence. If you want to encourage word-of-mouth marketing for your company, your audience must engage with your brand as diligently as they engage with you. But for that to happen, your audience must easily recognize your brand.

Do you know what people first notice in a brand? 

Its founder? No. 

Is it a motto? No.

Is it a logo? Yes!

The logo of your brand first comes to your audience’s notice. Your brand logo is an integral part of your online reputation because it is the visual representation of your brand that people will remember when they come across it. It is the first thing people will see when interacting with your brand online. Ensure your brand’s logo is easily recognizable and interactive so that it can leave a lasting impression on your audience.

Keep Conversation Starters Ready

Do you know what the most embarrassing thing at in-person events is? Well, the awkward silence and not having anything to talk about.

That’s why we are asking you to keep some conversation starters ready.

Here’s how you can get some conversation starters ready in no time:

  1. Ask open-ended questions

Asking open-ended questions allows the other person to provide more detail and information in their response, which can help keep the conversation going. Examples include: “What do you like to do in your free time?” or “What was the last book you read?”

  1. Ask about their current interests.

Asking someone about their current interests can help spark a conversation and provide insight into their passion. Examples include: “What project are you working on at the moment?” or “What’s your brand’s go-to hiring tracking system?”

  1. Talk about current events.

Talking about current events can be a great way to start a conversation. Examples include: “What do you think about the news today?” or “Do you follow any politics?”

  1. Bring up a shared experience.

Bringing up a shared experience can be a great conversation starter. Examples include: “Did you see the game last night?” or “Did you go to the same school as me?”

  1. Talk about your passions.

Talking about your passions can be a great way to start a conversation. Examples include: “I’m interested in photography – what do you think of it?” or “I’m a huge fan of hiking – what about you?”

Listen Actively

Being a good speaker is excellent, but are you a good listener too? To ensure effective networking, it is essential first to practice active listening.

Often, it’s natural to be eager to speak while communicating with another person. But listening to what they are trying to say is essential if you want to build solid and long-lasting relationships.

Listening actively makes it easy to understand other individuals’ needs and goals and tailor your response accordingly. Moreover, it also paves the path for mutual respect and understanding, which is at the heart of good networking.

Exit Conversations Gracefully

As much as having conversations is a work of art, exiting an exchange is no less than a skill as well. While ending a conversation, you must ensure the other individual doesn’t feel ignored. 

Start by thanking the person for the conversation and for their time. If you have enjoyed the chat, express that. If the discussion has come to a natural end, you could say, “Well, it was great talking to you. I’ll look around but catch up with you later.”

You can explain if you need to leave the conversation for a specific reason. For example, you could say, “I’m sorry, but I need to go and check on something. It was nice talking to you.”

Or suggest meeting up later during the event or exchanging contact details. However, if it’s time to go, you could say, “Take care; it was great talking to you,” and then move on.


The whole point of following all the above steps goes into vain if you don’t follow up with those people from the events later. Without following up, it’s impossible to build strong business relationships. 

However, please don’t do it too fast, which might make you look too clingy, or don’t do it too late; otherwise, they might forget you completely.

Once you have them in your network, assess whether they can be your ideal customer, and start prospecting. However, prospecting is challenging because it involves multiple follow-ups with your prospect. The problem is that you need more time to remember and send follow-up messages- right, repeatedly? That’s where social media automation tools come into play, allowing you to schedule your follow-up messages for multiple prospects simultaneously. So, even if you are busy working, your chances are still being followed up!


By researching the event in advance, creating a plan of action, and preparing your elevator intro, you can make the most out of the in-person events. 

By following the tips above, you can make the most of any in-person event and maximize your opportunities for success. 

When done right, networking can be a powerful tool that can open up a world of new possibilities!

© InEvent, Inc. 2024