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More Notes from a Networker

Posted by Ilise Benun on

I jumped into the Darwinian mosh-pit of networking again last week. It’s pretty wild out there!

NYSIA: New York Software Industry Association

I’ve mentioned them before — I finally got to a monthly meeting. The amenities were sparse — no food or drink — but it was free after all. It was a panel discussion, so there was just time before and after to chat. With my usual luck I sat near a job hunter, so got nowhere. However, the panel was quite interesting — about new cell phone software — and occasionally quite funny, so at least I was entertained.

SWINY Science Writers in NY

A writer I know has been getting my e-news, and asked me to consider speaking to her group. So I went to their winter party to check them out ($30., some nice wines). They were science journalists rather than marketing writers — apparently there is a big gap between the two tribes. But I did get to poll people on their feelings about a current client, who publishes scientific journals. I eventually decided they weren’t a good fit for me as audience, but may be good for Ilise — so I made the referral. One of the advantages of networking is that occasionally I have something of value — information.

C Squared

Another group I’ve been eyeballing. I went to their charity sector event — and it was odd. It was sort of a mix of singles bar and business networking, which to me is a queasy combination. There were a lot of people chasing very few prospects. I did talk to a person looking to serve on a board, so I gave some suggestions on ways to research organizations. Other people I’ve talked to who have attended C Squared say that some events have been great –they just can’t say which ones.

Note that even though these events were (kinda) duds, I still had some business cards to follow up with.

One of my goals this year is to do presentations — so last week I got to do one at an association of non profits in Connecticut. I team up with Howard, a direct competitor, to do these events — it works out because on our own, neither of us would do these — it is a ton of work. The audience was a rather glum bunch — but hell, if I were in their shoes, I’d be glum too! I did get me thinking about expanding seriously into other sectors.

This week among other gigs I went to the NYSIA Sales and Marketing SIG (special interest group), which I have attended on and off for a while now. This was my second early morning meeting this week and I did not want to go — but after struggling to stay awake during the presentation, I was waved over afterward by the SIG leader — he gets (and reads!) my e-news. He asked if I wanted to be on a panel discussing marketing at a future meeting — so you never know…

Anyone else have networking experiences to share? Productive or just peculiar?

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