Proven Email Template Included!
Networking can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right approach, it can be a fun and rewarding experience that will benefit your career in the short- and long-term. While networking is something that should be done regularly, it typically becomes a priority when you’re actively looking for a new position. It is, of course, a key component in any job search.
WHERE TO START | CREATE A SIMPLE PLAN
Make the most of your networking efforts by having a plan. First, research the key industry contacts, influencers and decision-makers you want to connect with. Create a spreadsheet for this information and use it to keep yourself accountable by tracking your outreach and results. You can also include a list of upcoming industry events that offer in-person networking opportunities.
Next, think about the messaging you want to use in your outreach (via LinkedIn or email). Create an email template you can customize for each contact. Use information gleaned from a person’s LinkedIn page, Twitter account, or company website bio. The more personalized your message, the better.
Lastly, strike the right tone – professional, but not too formal – think “business casual” for conversation – and light on business jargon.
YOUR SUCCESS WILL EQUAL THE EFFORT YOU PUT IN
With your plan in place, it really comes down to how much time and effort you put into networking. Yes, it can be discouraging if you don’t hear back from some (or many) of the people you contact. That said, we humans are wired to want to help others, so with the right approach and consistent, sustained efforts, you WILL start to see results.
Keep in mind it often takes time for networking efforts to produce a tangible result (e.g., landing a job offer). So, take the long view and know the time you’re investing will pay dividends, even if those returns may be months or years down the road.
A PROVEN OUTREACH TEMPLATE
There are a few key ingredients in an effective networking email:
- Personalize it and show you’ve done your homework on the recipient.
- Mention mutual connections if you have them.
- Keep business buzzwords to a minimum.
- Make it short and to the point. (As Emerson said, brevity is the soul of wit.)
- Be yourself (and genuine).
- Make a specific, time-based request. (e.g., Can I get 15 minutes of your time for a call?)
- If you don’t get a response after about five days, send a follow-up message. Everyone is busy, and inboxes are overflowing, so a lack of initial response doesn’t mean no.
Here is one of the best cold networking emails we have ever received (names changed & edited for brevity). It definitely elicited a response!
Happy Friday. I came across your name – and Vetted – through a couple of mutual connections: Sally Smith and Robert Jones.
Maybe more importantly, we share a mutual interest in Buffalo Tom, also one of my all-time favorite bands. I’ve probably seen them live 30+ times, so I’m certain we’ve been in the same room before.
But on to the matter at hand. I am exploring my next marketing leadership position and it seems you and your team at Vetted could be an asset in my search. Most recently, I led marketing and content strategy for Acme, Inc. Before that, I held marketing leadership roles at both startups and other established tech companies.
I’d love to connect and learn more about Vetted and your career journey, as well as share some Buffalo Tom stories. Do you have about 15 minutes for a call sometime in the coming days?
Take care, and have a great rest of your day.
All the best,