Real Estate Networking During Off-hours
Real estate networking during off-hours. What? Off-hours? Who the heck has any time off in this business?
Well, you should make the time. Working 24/7 isn’t healthy. Your body and your brain need time off. In fact, maybe you can find time for yourself at an after-hours networking event.
OK, but that’s not really taking time off, is it? True, but off-hours networking isn’t the same thing as the daily grind of prospecting for new clients or hauling buyers around to house showings. And it’s less intense than a typical networking activity, such as a conference.
You can chill out and relax while networking. Good for your brain AND your business!
Here are a few tips for successful off-hours networking.
Find an event that fits
The first thing most people think of when they hear off-hours networking is happy hour. And that’s certainly a popular activity. But it’s not the only opportunity out there. Think school events, sporting activities, dinner parties, etc. If hanging out at a happy hour isn’t your thing, then don’t do it. Find an event that fits your interests. Check your local chamber of commerce for ideas. Many of them offer after-hours networking events.
Polish your elevator pitch
An elevator pitch is a short speech (less than 60 seconds) about who you are and what you do. The name reflects the scenario of meeting a stranger in an elevator and having a conversation that will leave a meaningful impression. So it needs to be short, clear and impactful. It shouldn’t cover everything. You want to leave openings for further conversation.
Wear a name tag
I know, I know. Everyone hates name tags. But they sure beat trying to remember everyone’s name. And they offer a way to open a conversation. It’s pretty easy to walk up to someone, stick out your hand and say, “Hello Sue, I’m Jay. What do you do for a living?” People perk up and pay attention when you say their name. They listen more closely. So use it. Here’s a tip: Wear your name tag on your right side — it’s easier to read when your right hand is extended for a handshake.
Drink in moderation
Some of you will partake in the happy hour scene. And that’s perfectly fine. Just pay attention to how much alcohol you’re consuming. Reputations have been destroyed from people having a little too much to drink.
Mix and mingle
After-hour networking events are generally more casual than formal events and conferences. The atmosphere lends itself well to wandering about and mingling with various attendees, so take advantage of it!
You can’t work all day and all night. An off-hour event is both a chance to relax and meet new people. Focus on having a good time and enjoying yourself, instead of finding new clients. The new friends you make may very well turn into business at some point.