Networking is one of the most popular ways to promote you and your business but if you don’t understand the science behind it, you could be wasting your time.
In fact, if you don't know how the human brain works to block out anything that even remotely sounds like a sales pitch, you might as well give up networking and stay home.
Lauren Clemett interviews Networking Specialist Janet Culpitt in the 2016 Brandworking Webinar Series.
The science of Neurobranding shows that the brain works in a specific way when it comes to branding and marketing messages, especially in the form of a spoken conversation.
During networking, if you don’t understand the science behind your ‘pitch’, your networking efforts can very easily go nowhere.
Neurobranding is basically the way in which the brain places meaning on the ‘sales messages’ we are exposed to and the natural defences our brain has to protect us from harm and keep us safe from making bad decisions.
Although these primal instincts are ideal for physical safety, the brain can ‘block out’ opportunities based on experiences and memory, which is why many standard networking techniques fail to generate anything of tangible value.
The first secret to networking science is knowing that the brain wants things simple.
The secret to networking science is knowing that the brain wants things simple.
The Amygdala is the fear centre of the brain and it's primary function is to keep everything running smoothly. It doesn’t like things it can’t instantly recognise and understand and tends to freak out when it hears waffle or senses a lack of self confidence in the person it's interacting with.
Top Tip: Avoid using jargon or acronyms and never use flowery or over-elaborate language.
When you introduce yourself, use practical and meaningful terms to describe who you are and what you do, without trying to be clever or over complicated because you will simply confuse the brain.
Some networking gurus say not to use your title to introduce yourself, but contrary to that belief, clearly knowing what it is that you do and who you are, is exactly what the brain wants because it needs to know what it’s dealing with and a confused mind won’t buy.
The second secret to networking science is to find your prospects WIIFM, the “What’s In It For Me?”.
The secret to networking science is finding your prospects WIIFM - Their "What's In it For Me?".
The people you are networking with are 10,000 times more interested in themselves than they are in you and their brain engages and focuses better when the subject being discussed is important to them.
Tempting as it might be to share an anecdote about yourself, keep the focus on their favourite subject and here is no subject more important to your prospect, than themselves.
The best networking skill you can learn is focused listening. Be interested rather than being interesting and talk more about them than about you.
The best networking skill you can learn is focused listening
The final and most important secret to the science of networking is to know that the brain works in pictures and if you want to develop trust, it’s pointless trying to do this with words, you need to describe what it’s going to be like when they work with you.
During networking, many people talk about the problems the prospect might have and even offer their services as resolutions to these problems, but that’s not enough. The brain is left hanging, not sure what to do with that information.
When you discuss their problems and the resolutions available to them, take it one step further and describe the outcome. Once you have painted a picture for the prospects brain to imagine what the outcome will be like, there is more desire to trust you can deliver on that promise.
It's all about being a P.R.O - Problem, Resolution, Outcome.
Fast moving consumer brands do P.R.O well - when you choose a Coke it’s not because you are thirsty, it’s because the brand promises that Coke makes you popular, socially acceptable and fun. Snickers does the same with its “You’re not you when you’re hungry” campaign - cleverly showing a transformation that will take place when you eat their product.
So to get results from your networking, before you take a step out your door, take the time to consider the pain or problem your prospect has and what outcome or transformation takes place once they have used your services?
Describe that transformation using visual words and the brain will create the picture of trust in your services.
Your prospect is now far more open to buying you and your services, because their brain has already shown them the outcome.
Like all sciences, practical tests are always more interesting than theory, so the best way to use Neurobranding science is to put a few of these secrets into action at your next networking event.
Lauren interviewed Networking Specialist Janet Culpitt in the Brandworking Series to learn the top #1 secrets to be seen, get known and make money via networking. CLICK HERE to watch.