How to Network at A Sold Out Event

We’ve all been there! Where we found out about an event too late to purchase tickets or we received an invite at the last minute for a major event. The tips below can apply to any major event: New York Fashion Week, BET Awards, Espy’s, Essence Festival, Revolt Conference, etc.

1.Intern Volunteer

At this point, it is too late to sign up as vendor and tickets to attend are sold out. However, things are continuously changing up until the very last second to show time. It is worth asking the show coordinator (or anyone with an all access pass, for that matter) is there anything you can do as an volunteer. Please be prepared to get your hands dirty, break a nail, roll up your sleeves and scuff your heels if need be. You never know what this opportunity may lead to, have your resumes and business cards near by, Linked In profile up to date and social media pages ready to go.

2. Be Prepared!

Speaking of business cards and resumes…have them readily available. You never know who you’ll be rubbing shoulders with in the elevator, see in the lobby or catch such and such’s publicist at Starbucks. All the movers and shakers are in town for this event, make the most of it. Think outside the box. Maximize on every opportunity possible!

3. Hit The Scene

So, you didn’t receive an invite to the actual event? All hope isn’t loss there are other ways you can spend your time.Where there is a will, there’s a way. Its major event think bigger! Go beyond the main event. Attend after parties, gifting suites, department store events, fashion shows, boutique events, beauty events, blogger events, smaller designer shows, magazine events, etc. Take pictures of everything and everybody. We’re making memories people! Getting a picture with your favorite celebrity can bring traffic and recognition to your own blog. Or you be could featured on their social media pages or even better a major publication’s website.

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4. Make Valuable Connections By Being Valuable Yourself

We should always seek to be worth knowing by providing value, rather than to be well known. You should ask about the other person’s careers and interest that you’re meeting. This gives you insight into their lives. By now you should thinking about what you can offer them and how a collaboration would be beneficial to the both of you. Your network determines your net worth. It isn’t even always what you know but whom. Don’t be afraid to speak to people and get to know them. It might not result in the opportunity of a lifetime but it could connect you to the people necessary to help bring your dream to fruition. The six degrees of separation is real.

5. Local Events

You couldn’t make it to actual event? Not too worry, create a local meet up in your area and invite all the business professionals in your area. Stream, review and watch the shows together. This creates new bonds, alliances and opportunities to work together in the future.

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6. Dress the Part

If there was ever a time to overdress, be over the top with your attire…this would be that time. People are judging your book by its cover. Your winning personality will merely be the icing on the cake. So, please dress the part! This doesn’t mean you have to wear expensive labels you can’t pronounce. Identify your style, OWN it and others will take notice.

FYI…Everybody you meet will not be friendly, personable or approachable. This is the business industry that goes without saying. THICK SKIN IS IN, for every outfit as it is a necessary accessory to work in this line of work. Don’t be discouraged. There are way too many people ready and willing to network, who are hungry for success and taking their careers into their own hands to get strung up on catty behavior. You could’ve stayed at home for all of that. So, laugh about it. Go where you’re celebrated, not tolerated.

What events are on your roster this year? Where are you traveling to next?

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