For the past few months we’ve been talking about how to increase your website design conversion rates, but today I thought we’d switch gears just a bit and see how you can apply these same techniques to your networking habits.

How many times have you met someone at a cocktail party or a business networking event and when you ask what they do, your eyes glaze over, and your mind starts wandering until they’re done?  You realize that you don’t have a clue what they do and you try to escape from the conversation as quickly as possible in hopes that they won’t trap you with a question which might reveal the fact that you didn’t hear a thing that they said.  Does that sound familiar?

Have you ever wondered if people are doing the same thing to you?  Are they totally lost when you start talking?  Probably.  How can you make sure that they understand what you’re saying?  How about distilling what you do down into a big picture idea.  A big picture idea is something that conveys what you do in a metaphor or a story or some other visual picture that even a 7 year old could grasp.  I could tell people that we offer search engine optimization (which many people don’t grasp) or I could say that we help our clients to get their websites ranked at the top of Google.  Relatively few people know what search engine optimization is, but even my 7 year old daughter knows what it means to be at the top of Google.  I could use a bunch of technical language to describe what we do, or I could just simplify it and give the big picture.  Think about this…when your eyes start to glaze over at that networking event, it’s at the moment when they started telling you more than you wanted to know.  They might have grabbed your attention in the first few seconds but then you started to drift as soon as they used their first bit of jargon.  At that point they lost you.  Pile on a few more big words and some lingo that’s meaningless and unless you’re an engineer who’s incorporating that C559G coupling into your rocket, you don’t care.  On the other hand, what if that guy said that he makes the parts that power the space shuttle.  Wouldn’t that be sufficient?  Wouldn’t that grab your attention?  That’s actually exciting.  You don’t need to know the nitty-gritty nerdy details about the coupling that he designed.  Keep it high level, tell the big picture and keep people engaged.  Hope that helps you see your conversion rates grow.

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