August 22, 2013
I have heard differing opinions from advisors in my study group on the benefits of joining a local networking group. Some of them claim they have gotten new business from them and some say it is a waste of time. What have you seen?
Thanks, Scott, New Jersey
Like anything in life, you get out of something what you put into it. Joining a local networking group is no exception. In order to maximize the benefit of participating in one of these groups, you must be proactive and you must follow up.
For example, I was talking to an advisor recently who attends 7 networking group meetings a month. This seems like a large amount of meetings in my opinion, but he says he gets a lot out of them because he takes the initiative to follow up with each member of the group who can provide him with access to a new set of prospective clients.
For instance, one of the members of one the networking groups is on a board to create a local Economic Summit meeting. The advisor was able to get himself on the agenda by working with a local mutual fund wholesaler --to get a portfolio manager from the fund to come and talk to the audience. The advisor got the opportunity to introduce the speaker and tell the attendees at the Summit what he does and then followed up with each attendee at the meeting. He gained 6 new clients from that one meeting alone.
So, the answer to your question is that I believe local networking groups do work. As long as you are willing to work too.
Give it a try,