A seasoned digital media entrepreneur, Andrew Fischer most recently co-founded Choozle, a pioneer in programmatic digital marketing that employs 30 folks on Front Range. Prior to Choozle, Andrew co-founded and built the RGM Alliance, a premium focused online advertising network. Andrew holds a BA in Economics from Vanderbilt and an MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School of Business. Follow him @AndrewFischer_1.
Recently, YEC spoke with Andrew about his experiences networking and his advice for others aspiring to improve their own experience. His best advice is below.
Treat All Networking Opportunities as Endless Possibilities
Give selflessly with your time, energy, and resources and you’ll be rewarded multiple times over. Don’t be gimmicky. I recommend being professional, energetic and personalized whenever possible. Referencing something relevant to the potential contact shows you’ve done your homework.
I was once introduced by a potential investor to another gentleman who eventually became a business partner, board member, and investor in our business. No matter how informal or seemingly insignificant, treat every networking touchpoint as if it has the potential to transform your business.
Don’t Be Afraid to Follow Up
A successful networker has to have polite persistence. It is easy for most to ignore simple networking requests and inquiries. By following up politely a few times, you will already have separated yourself from 90 percent of other folks out there.
It is highly dependent upon your industry, but in order to make solid business connections, try to mix in practical types of events with thought leadership conferences. The former are better for learning, and the latter is better for networking.
Reach Out for a Warm Introduction
LinkedIn is my primary research and connection tool, but I also use Twitter and web searches to review the potential contact and find anything they have recently done, written, etc. However, a warm introduction from a mutual contact is by far the best way to accelerate a connection. Cold inquiries and LinkedIn connection requests with no personalization or thought put into it won’t get you anywhere.