What networking isn’t

What networking isn’t: asking people for cards when they haven’t expressed interest in your services, or blowing an opportunity to showcase your talent.

For example, a web/logo designer took my card the other night and didn’t even look at it before it went into her pocket. (It’s a good thing for her I’m not Japanese! But i was still miffed.)

She could have commented on my logo or suggested something to consider. Now I think of her as NOT someone who lives and loves graphic design. Is she getting my call, ever?

So, I’m now thinking of instituting a new policy with folks who really aren’t likely clients: no one gets my card when I don’t see a need for their services. The flip side if that is that when I give you a card, it will mean that I do want to hear from you in some way. (Permission marketing — thanks, Seth.)

What do you to to channel people who aren’t a good fit? We always talk about saying no to the wrong clients, but what about everyone else?

Closing tip: if someone asks you second-level questions and you answer like you’ve had four glasses of wine, you may have squandered an opportunity.