Is your business connecting and networking with others both on and offline? If you’re not then you could be missing out on a number of benefits, including the opportunity to expand your network, gain new clients, form partnerships, build your reputation, access shared resources and learn from others, to name a few.
Throughout this blog we’ll explore how the means in which people are choosing to connect are shifting again and reveal our top tips for effective communication in those on and offline settings.
Online connections certainly have their place. Online meetings or networking events can be convenient, especially if you are time poor or needing to connect and communicate with someone that is in an entirely different part of the world to yourself.
Connecting online can also be beneficial to businesses that want to offer their customers a quick and easy means of contacting them, think social media messenger tools or online chats.
If you’re someone that isn’t overly confident, you might feel more comfortable showing up to an online meeting as opposed to an in-person meeting or event, because you feel like you have some sort of shield in front protecting you.
When connecting online you often tap into a bigger audience than you potentially could through an offline connection.
And, if you’re someone that needs to meet with a lot of people, connecting online can sometimes be the most cost-effective option, you’re cutting down on travel expenses and perhaps operating to a greater efficiency because you have more time in your day to fit in a greater number of business meetings or online events.
Despite the many benefits that connecting online can offer, if we flash back to 2020 and the only way we could connect with people was through a screen…it led to a lot of Zoom Fatigue. (I’m sure we’re not alone in saying we experienced this). We missed being able to shake someone’s hand, we missed being able to look into someone’s eyes, we missed that in person connection.
In person meetings and networking events just hit differently to those that are held on screen, they offer many benefits that cannot be replicated through technology alone. At Carrick Creative we believe that in person meetings can lead to stronger relationships, allowing a strong rapport to develop. And when it comes to trust, it’s likely that you’ll find it easier to trust someone that you have met in person than you have through an online connection, especially when it comes down to making important business decisions.
If you’re simply connecting in an online setting, you could be missing out on important things, like reading body language, facial expressions or even tone of voice. Not only can these be harder to pick up on, in some instances they can be entirely misunderstood.
And of course, in-person meetings or events normally lead to a greater engagement rate, as it’s a lot easier to get distracted or lose your focus when you are hiding behind a screen, compared to when that person is right there in front of you.
The Shift to Offline Meetings
Despite the many benefits that we’ve mentioned above when it comes to offline meetings, at Carrick we’ve realised that really people have missed that real human connection, both within our team and with our valued clients.
People are excited to get out of the office or excited to change their scenery for a few hours. People are craving human connection and offline meetings are beginning to rise again.
Whether you are choosing to connect with others in an on or offline setting, it is important to recognise that things like Networking or Online Meetings can of course have a profound positive impact on your business, so it is important that you are connecting and communicating with others in some capacity.
How to communicate effectively
Effective communication is crucial for the success of any business, so we’re sharing our top tips for great communication.
- Be clear and concise with your message. Use simple language and terminology that your audience will understand. If you use overcomplicated terms, you could risk confusing your audience and losing their attention or interest in what you have to say/ offer.
- Remember to listen. Part of communication success involves listening and paying attention to what the other person is saying. Use this as an opportunity to ask questions and demonstrate that you are taking an interest in what they are saying.
- Consider your body language. Use a friendly and professional tone, maintain good eye contact and open body language to show that you are engaged in the conversation.
- Always be respectful. Avoid getting angry or confrontational even if someone says something that you don’t agree with. In business, you are always going to come up against some objections and it’s how you handle these objections that often has an incredible impact.
- Don’t forget to follow up. Whether you have communicated in an online or offline capacity, make sure you keep in touch and follow up on any meetings/ conversations so that you are able to continue to build that all important rapport.