Organizing and then subsequently hosting a corporate networking event can be as stressful and challenging as it inevitably will be just as rewarding, as long as you take the time to ensure every proverbial box is tick.
With that being said, continue reading to discover five ways of helping your networking event be a huge and memorable success story.
1. Stick to Your Budget Carefully
A budget is always an important factor, both in a personal context and in a professional one. When hosting any kind of get together or big event, the temptation to throw caution to the wind and blow your budget is understandably large. Costs can even spiral up quickly if the event hasn’t been thought through carefully in the beginning.
However, any networking event you organize and host (no matter the size or location) is bound to incur at least a small cost to the organizers and therefore you should first only include elements you need, rather than optional extras which you feel will add just a superficial or aesthetic edge. These can be add later when you know that you have the money.
One way can make your networking event stand out from the crowd of others which your attendees have already experienced is to book live entertainment from such professionals as alivenetwork.com.
The world is your oyster when it comes to choosing the right style, sound and indeed duration of your live entertainment, with the following acting as a springboard for your ideas:
- Theatrical performances
- Stand-up comedy open mike sessions
- Magicians and performers
- Live music
- Tribute bands
- Free Bar
- Nibbles & Canapes
3. Location is Everything
You may well be looking to hold your networking evening in a hotel or hired event room close to your office or place of work. This is definitely the best suggestion, not least because you can rest assured that at least your own employees will be able to get there easily.
However, there are several other considerations when choosing the right location, such as ease of public transport in and around the area and whether or not there are inexpensive yet suitable hotels close to the event.
4. Event Promotion
Naturally, you should still look to promote your networking events via the normal and more traditional channels, such as staff meetings within your own department, companywide e-mail ‘round robin’ and notices in the rec rooms and other public areas of the workplace.
However, to attract experts in the industry and more importantly, to target the guest list in a way that encourages like-minded professionals who want to advance their own careers and companies, you should use social media platforms too – though strategically and be careful what you say. You want to target the right people, not have a free for all.
5. Always Follow-Up
After your successful networking event itself, it is absolutely imperative to follow-up, not only with your own employees and others within your company, but to each and every attendee as well.
LinkedIn is an excellent way of keeping the professional bonds created at your event going back in the ‘real world’ and alongside LinkedIn, you should also look to creating and dispatching post-networking event surveys to find out how you can do even better next time.