In-Person Events are Better for Networking
[Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes and 29 seconds] We’re pretty sure you’ve noticed something while being out and about.
Most people aren’t wearing masks anymore. The social distancing signs are long gone. All in all, the world is returning to the way it looked before COVID. In fact, the Biden Administration has announced an end date in May for the public health emergency.
And with that, in-person events are starting to bounce back, and we couldn’t be more excited!
We certainly want to be sure everyone feels safe and comfortable. That’s our first priority. On our end, we’ve decided to begin hosting in-person events ourselves again, just like so many other organizations are—and we’re having an absolute ball putting those together!
While virtual events still have their benefits, we wanted to make it plain that in-person events are better for networking. Because, let’s face it, any kind of in-person event is a perfect opportunity to do some critical networking.
If you’re in the marketing industry in Columbus, Ohio, we hope you will attend our in-person opportunities.
Let’s talk about why.
You Can Have a Personal Conversation
Many of us have attended virtual events at some point in the last few years. Some people have their cameras on, while others have them off. And everyone is in their own little square, each a part of a larger grid.
(It can feel a little bit like the Brady Bunch…)
Sure, sometimes you can send someone a direct message. But that’s a far cry from standing next to someone, looking them in the eye, and getting to craft an important connection.
It’s no secret that relationships are paramount to achieving professional success, including the marketing industry here in Columbus, Ohio. Building those connections entails having personal discussions where two or more people can have a genuine conversation that flows naturally.
Past events have also revealed another truth: Networking isn’t just about making professional marketing connections that can lead to job interviews, new freelance clients, or set up other business deals.
People have also made long-lasting friendships! After all, we all have one thing in common: We’re all marketing professionals in Columbus, Ohio. And that base alone has allowed all sorts of people to discover additional shared interests and values as well.
That would be much harder to do, in any meaningful way, online!
It’s Easier to Make Introductions
Part of networking is introducing someone to a person they should connect with or having someone do the same kindness for you.
At networking events like the ones AMA Columbus will be holding, some conversations can take a turn like this:
“Hey, have you met Bob? We used to work together. I heard someone in his company is looking to hire a marketing copywriter. Come on, I’ll introduce you.”
Hands are shaken, and smiles are exchanged. Conversations develop, and common interests are discovered. It’s a natural progression that can positively impact careers and lives over time.
Now, think of the same thing trying to play out at a virtual event. It would just be someone connecting you to another person’s DM inbox. Sure, chats can happen. But those connections just aren’t the same, and the introductions just aren’t as effective. It’s not as fluid or natural.
You Can Read People’s Body Language
Whether you realize it or not, you communicate quite a bit through your body language. It can often offer a more genuine and impactful expression than the words you say.
When you’re at an in-person networking event, you can read the other person’s body language, which will help you determine if the conversation is going the way you’d like it to. If the person is smiling, seems relaxed, and positioning their body toward you with direct eye contact, you know they are happy to be there.
But other times, people’s body language will alert you that some change needs to be made. Maybe they’re uncomfortable for some reason, and you can read how you might switch things up to accommodate them. Or perhaps you’ll more quickly realize you’ve been barking up the wrong tree, so to speak.
This is next to impossible in a virtual setting. That’s why written communications like text messages, emails, and even social media can cause problems: There’s no tone of voice or body language to help guide you.
As you already know, a big part of marketing is knowing your audience. And in our Columbus-based networking events, you’re marketing … yourself!
It’s Great Practice for Job Interviews
Job interviews can dial up anxiety within a lot of people. They feel like they’re in the hot seat and may stumble when asked questions.
But with in-person networking, you can practice talking about yourself, asking good questions, and feeling more comfortable in your own skin over time. And that can only help you become better at job interviews when those opportunities arrive.
We hope you’ll come out to our in-person events. While most people don’t wear masks out in public anymore, we’ll all completely understand and support your decision to wear one if you so choose.
Between the ability to sit down and connect with someone, enjoy introductions, read people’s body language, and even prepare for job interviews … there are just too many advantages to in-person events as it relates to networking over those in a virtual space.
We hope you’ll keep an eye on our Events page for our latest offerings and that we see you soon at a future event!