Virtual networking events allow contractors and companies to connect and share ideas and materials from all over. These six tips from Black Diamond Networks will help you make the most of virtual networking events, from before the event begins to after it ends.
1. Spread the word about the virtual networking event
Virtual networking events are a great place to find connections, even before the event starts. Share about the event on LinkedIn and your other networks to help spread the word, increase attendance, and connect with other attendees.
The event host may have set up a specific hashtag or group to help event attendees find each other. Ensure you also follow the event host on available channels to get updates about the virtual networking event.
2. Review the virtual networking event agenda
Usually, the virtual networking event agenda will be released long before the event’s dates. Remember to look at two important things: what’s happening, and who’s attending.
Review the virtual networking event schedule to prioritize your time during the event. Often, multiple exhibits and workshops will be happening simultaneously, so you will want to identify the ones you want to attend.
Checking who will be in attendance – companies, speakers, and other individuals – will also give you a sense of who you should connect with and talk to before, during, and after the event.
3. Update your resume before the virtual networking event
The event may provide you the opportunity to send your resume to a company or recruiter. Rather than scrambling to update your resume at or after the event, invest some time updating it beforehand so you are prepared to send it out quickly. Speed is essential in this fast-paced world!
Virtual networking events offer you the opportunity to learn about open positions and what’s new at companies, but it’s also a place where you can showcase what’s new with you. Updating your resume is a crucial piece of that, so ensure you prepare this beforehand.
4. Minimize distractions during the virtual networking event
Minimizing distractions will help you make the most of your time during the virtual networking event. This could include blocking off your calendar so you don’t have any meetings that conflict with the event schedule. If your emails, phone calls, and texts aren’t time-sensitive, try to put off reviewing or responding to them until later.
If possible, “attend” the virtual networking event in a place with few distractions, like a private room instead of a coffee shop. Taking notes during presentations can help you focus and retain information, such as hearing about exciting opportunities and connecting with the right people.
5. Find ways to stand out during the virtual networking event
It can be challenging to stand out during virtual networking events. Here are a few ways to distinguish yourself and be memorable:
- Have a quick introduction prepared for breakout rooms or other situations.
- Use the chat functionality if available to connect with other attendees.
- Ask questions, whether you prepare them before or think of them on the go.
- Share interesting information you learn during the event and connect with other attendees on platforms like Twitter or LinkedIn.
Using these tips to stand out during virtual networking events may help others remember you. If they’re especially interested in your comments and questions, they may follow up with you, which also takes some of the pressure off you after the event.
6. Follow up with speakers, companies, and peers from the event
Virtual networking events usually record presentations or send supplementary materials to attendees afterward. If there were any events that you couldn’t attend, you might even be able to get those recordings.
Since the primary purpose of virtual networking events is to network, following up is a necessary next step after the event. Connect with presenters, fellow attendees, and companies on LinkedIn or send out emails and resumes to the people with whom you connected. This time is also perfect for clarifying any leftover questions or seeking further information.
Navigating virtual networking events can sometimes be challenging because they look, feel, and proceed differently from in-person events. However, the pandemic has shown us how important virtual networking events are for contractors looking for connections and new opportunities. Use these six tips to get the most out of your next virtual networking event.
Do you have more questions about attending virtual events, finding new opportunities, and connecting with the right people? Your experts at Black Diamond can help! Get in touch with us anytime.