For salespeople, networking involves interacting with connections and prospects to build relationships, exchange advice and insights, make new contacts, demonstrate expertise, and uncover potential opportunities. Networking occurs through events, associations, conferences, social media, and fortuitous encounters.
Done right, networking expands sales reach through referrals and warm introductions. It depends on the mutual give and take of authentic relationship building, not just closing immediate deals. Following up consistently and providing value to connections expands networks over time.
Approaching networking strategically with clear goals and measurably contributes to sales success. However, hard selling too aggressively risks damaging established relationships. The best networkers focus on forging long term professional bonds.