Get an email script for following up after a business networking event with potential ideal clients and leads you want to do business with.
What’s the comeback for when I met a promising lead at an event and I need to follow up?
When I was young, especially throughout my college experience, I heard two phrases repeated relentlessly by every well-meaning adult who wanted to dispense their wisdom and share their secrets to success.
- 80% of life is simply showing up. Do that and you’ll already be ahead of everyone else.
- 80% of success is about who you know. Doors to new opportunities don’t open for strangers.
At the time, I’d listen, smile, walk away, and roll my eyes. Later, after starting my business, I realized they were all right. No one can hire you, buy from you, or learn from you if they don’t know you exist. That means that making sales, landing clients, earning referrals, and finding success all rely on visibility, networking, and relationships.
Networking and building strong relationships are how I built my business.
The people I already knew got me through my first year in business and helped me replace my full-time salary in six months. To keep growing though, I needed to expand my network and I needed more people to know me, trust me, hire me, and refer people to me.
So I did the work and put in the networking time.
- I joined multiple professional business networking groups and paid to attend the monthly lunches, dinners, and events.
- I joined free and paid Meetup groups and showed up ready to help others every time — week after week, month after month.
- I volunteered to help with events and also joined leadership teams, helped plan events, and spearheaded committees.
I invested time, money, and energy into building credibility, trust, and meaningful relationships and it paid off big time.
That doesn’t happen from just showing up.
It happens as a result of good follow-up after meeting someone or interacting with someone at an event. It comes from taking the time and initiative to reach out, send a personal note, and show someone that they mattered. It comes from going the extra mile.
The good news is that following up with a prospective client isn’t that difficult when you’re working from a template or script!
Use this email script to follow up with a hot lead after a conference, seminar, workshop, retreat, or networking event.
Mentioning not only the event but how you met and an experience you shared or something you discussed, immediately personalizes the interaction and makes your follow-up more meaningful. Keeping the focus on the lead, what they do, and how you can help, ensures your message doesn’t come off as too salesy.
It was fabulous meeting you at [EVENT NAME]. I’m so happy [HOW YOU MET] and [A BENEFIT OF THE MEETING].
Thank you for helping make the event a great experience!
If there is anything I can do to support you with [WHAT YOU DO], please let me know.
I have more than 20 years of experience helping clients just like you [ACHIEVE THIS RESULT] so they can [ENJOY THIS BENEFIT], and I would love the opportunity to explore how I can support you and make [WHAT IS IMPACTED BY YOUR WORK] easier.
Again, it was wonderful to meet you and I look forward to staying in touch!
This script is just one you’ll find in Confident Comebacks, a collection of professional client service scripts that will help you quickly and confidently craft firm, fair, friendly responses to sticky client situations.
A Warning About Networking
There are three things you must understand for networking and follow-up to work for you.
First, you can’t approach networking or follow-up with a selfish attitude.
You can’t walk into a room focused on what you’ll get from everyone else and you can’t show up with the intent to push your services and close a sale on the spot. Don’t be that pushy, icky person everyone is avoiding or trying to get away from.
Instead, focus on being present, listening to understand, and looking for opportunities to give, share, and help. That energy will create far better results and help you connect with others on a deeper level.
Second, not all networking is the same.
You need to know what outcomes you’re looking for from your networking efforts and track the results. Hanging out with business friends at a networking event is not strategic networking that will grow your business!
- If networking to find partners and potential hires, you need to seek out networking events within your own industry — events people who do the same thing you do attend.
- If networking to gain new clients, you may need to test different networking groups to find those that your ideal clients attend.
- Over time, as your business evolves or you start to look for larger clients, you may also outgrow networking groups and need to find new places to network.
Third, all follow-up does not carry the same weight.
A quick LinkedIn connection request and note or social media follow isn’t the same as a personal email. And a personal email isn’t as meaningful as a handwritten note sent via snail mail. The ways you follow up, the number of times you follow up, and what you say in your follow up will depend on the connection made, the discussions had, and the potential of the relationship.