I've been doing this for some time now and have connected with some people that aren't A list but also aren't me in a sense (someone that hasn't made it yet. What do you feel is the best way to network in order to make dream reality.
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Hello Nova, make sure you use these, they are free http://www.ShowBizCards.com. When you network, NEVER leave your info in the hands of the new contact. Then create a follow-up and follow through plan. Some great tips here: http://www.performertrack.com/webinars-home-pw-follow-od.html This is good for audition follow-up, booking follow-up and general networking. Regarding "A-list" vs. non, you want to create relationship with those that are on their way to "making it" b/c those that are already there have their own group of people that they like to use (like, trust, know). In the free seminars we host we call it "creating your own cyclone".
The best way to network is to go to things at which you will find people you want to meet. Sometimes, that means going to things you might not otherwise think to go to. Don't give out business cards or other personal information unless someone asks you for it. Blanket distribution of information generally yields no fruit. Most of all, be friendly. The friendlier you are, the more quickly people will know, like and trust you.
Work. If you can bring something to the table, then you will network effectively. If you show up to the table with an empty plate and say, someone put something on this although I don't have anything to offer except I'm talented I promise. Then you are networking in the wrong direction.
My ethos is to share a little love before hoping some comes back. I've always found business a pleasingly karmic dynamic. Invest in people by listening to them, believing in them, reaching out to them. Don't pester, don't hard sell and never have an entitled attitude.
Man, Cj, couldn't have said it better myself.
I look more for developing relationships these days than networking. Networking seems so passive to me. In my case, relationships are generated through a common goal: producing a web series, getting involved in a class, etc. Networking can begin and end at a business card transfer. I have a drawer full of business cards that I will likely never look at again. Real relationships truly build something. Basically what Derek said...:)
@Joshua hopefully you can create a follow-up plan for folks whose NEW cards you exchange info with and keep it going. In my quarterly newsletter for example I always included something fun. I got such a huge response from my subscribers when I included something from "way back when"...lots of laughs can turn into great networking. Seriously the free webinar on the follow-up is worth the price of admission.
Thank You all for you great responses I will try my best to utilize all of these at the best of my ability.. =) NovaJay
I take it you are in LA, not NY.
Louiza Patsis I'm not in either actually :( I'm in Baltimore.