It has been some time since I’ve written and specifically about networking. I tried to get a post out yesterday but it sounded so angry and complaint-driven that I bailed on it.
The thing about networking that I’m learning is that it isn’t overnight. No matter my motives of helping people in their business or whatever else, people don’t trust people the way they did before. I also feel that social media has fucked up the way society communicates with each other, but that is a story for another day.
The Networking Event Last Week
I went to a networking event last Wednesday. It was in the morning, I was nervous as any kid starting in a new school for the first time and I just didn’t know what to expect. I greeted a couple of people, some people were eating breakfast and I was curious to see how it was going to go. One guy talked my ear off about being focused and dropping everything else in order to learn and get better about my business. He had so much passion that I knew I was at the right place. The speaker didn’t show up and they played it off well.
Then. The part everyone seemed to be there for was to talk about their business and gather up business cards. I was excited because this bunch of people seemed different. So I listened about what they had to say about their businesses on a one-on-one level and chimed in about mine when I was asked. As my wife tells me, the “Talk to Me” face took over, and I was the last person to leave. This one guy kept talking about how he was going to take over the world and about changing the game and whatever else. He was just long winded and I was ready to get out of there.
Again. It seemed like it was the same story, just a different day. I sent out a couple of emails, some people responded, many didn’t and I was off to feeling depressed again.
Networking will take time. Tons of time. Besides, since I don’t have any real business or somebody they feel who can help them, people are not going to show me any love. It’s fucked up saying that and it hurts inside, but being real about the circumstances is extremely refreshing.
So, the people I do connect with, I will continue to help them in any which way. I will refer people who can probably help them. I will go out of my way to see if they can get work from someone who I feel who needs it. And more than anything, develop good sounding friendships.
In the Meantime…
I’m focusing on two areas that my business needs plenty of work: marketing and selling. In the next 6 months to a year, I will turn my attention on the MASTERING of marketing and sales. If this is done to the diligence and discipline, I’m going to be a serious badass businessman.
This challenge is right up there with my writing everyday that I started a couple of years ago. That means, with the already hour I’m spending everyday writing, I will also be devoting atleast an hour to marketing and sales material.
The reason why I’m doing this is because in business, marketing is king in order to get your product sold to the people who need it. You can be the very best in your craft, but if no one knows about the solution you are solving for their problems, then you are fucked. I will of course have to continue to get better in photography, but that can take a backseat. The marketing is what is going to get me away from my job and creating a real life for me and my family.
From time to time I will be talking about different case studies that I’m doing for my own business and also helping other people with their endeavors. This is going to be so so much fun.
Also, this is the biggest challenge yet for me. The main reason is because I’m not only going to be reading an insane amount of books on marketing and sales. I’m actually going to be implementing what I learn. This is going to be the key to me learning. Just rapid failure and learning and getting better. I’m going to be a changed person and I also hope to use this learning as part of my business model.