(Image: Greentech Media)
Welcome back to the real would, GDC attendees. In our last post, we shared some tips on how to network more effectively while out and about at the conference. What about after? How do you follow up with all the connections you made? What do you even say? When should I do it? We’re here to help.
- Follow up now
The conference is still fresh in the minds of everyone who attended. This week is the best time to reach out to those people you want to really make an impression on. Prioritize your list of contacts and reach out to the ones that are on the top and work your way down. You have about a 2 weeks window where you won’t look too aggressive contacting them now and not too lazy contacting them toward the end.
- Have something to actually say
Sending an email saying “Hi there! We met at GDC!” isn’t something you want to send a potential contact in the industry. Send them something with value, something that will be useful to them. Did you talk about your portfolio and your work? Send them a link and thank them for their time. Did they share an exciting opportunity or news about something they are doing with their company? Ask them for more details and how that is going. Make it a conversation. If you don’t have something to talk about, consider reaching out when you do.
- They have a job to get back to
Everyone is just getting back to work, or even still traveling after the conference. A lot of people might even take some time off to recoup. Be patient and respectful of their time. People are more likely to respond to someone who is understanding of the fact they might not get back quickly over someone who is pestering them every other day. If it is someone who you really want to connect with, give them a week before you follow up again.
- Follow them on social media
This is a great way to stay in contact with people after the conference and also a good alternative to a direct contact like email or phone. This is also a good way to connect with those people you don’t really have something to say to, like we mentioned in our first point. Following someone on Twitter and sending a causal tweet about how it was nice to meet them is a fantastic way to keep in touch without the formality of an email.
- Tip: Don’t add people to your LinkedIn contacts unless the topic has come up or it makes sense after meeting them.
- They might not get back to you
This is the sad truth unfortunately, but just because you talked at GDC doesn’t mean they want to take that connection further. That is ok. If it is someone you want to stay connected with and you have genuine interest in what they do and their company, then step 3 is your best option. Otherwise, let it be. Be respectful and don’t take it personal. Who knows, you might run into them again when growing that relationship makes more sense for them and you’ll be ready.
Good luck making new connections and share any other tips fellow attendees might find helpful below!