Meetups are great places for startups to expand their networks. And what could be better than a meetup? How about a Super Meetup!
On July 12 Technical.ly and Videology are hosting Super Meetup 2016, presented by Publishing Services. This event is the perfect opportunity to learn about entrepreneurial resources and other tech-focused meetup groups. What makes the Super Meetup super? Simple. Super Meetup takes members of other meetup groups and brings them together in one place for a, well, super meetup.
Technical.ly puts it best when they say, “The idea of Super Meetup is simple: meetups are integral to any tech-business community. Every now and then, it makes sense to gather a bunch of people for one big mixer. Bringing groups dedicated to different niches to mingle with one another yields great opportunities for cross pollination. Plus, it’s a snapshot of our mission: strengthening Baltimore’s tech community.”
As Super Meetup approaches, we at ETC decided to ask around our own startups and see what their favorite meetups are.
Phil DiMuro, cofounder of Loople, said that at Loople their favorite startups are Startup Soiree, Launch Annapolis, CEO dinner, and “honestly any event that brings together good people.” When asked why, DiMuro said, “We love these events because they create meaningful connections between individuals who are interested in helping each other. The people we meet at these events are always focused on how do we grow the community of entrepreneurship not just themselves as individuals.” Loople is a mobile app that finds you “drink specials, food specials, happy hours, live music, and more in real-time.”
Anne Balduzzi, founder of SameGrain, told us that her favorite meetup is the Annapolis Entrepreneurs Group.SameGrain is a social app that lets you connect with other people who have the same interests, values, backgrounds, and more. They emphasize privacy and anonymity on their social platform.
Lastly, Alex Menkes, CEO of ADASHI Systems, reports to regularly participates in a CEO roundtable. ADASHI Systems “delivers exceptional technology to emergency responders, incident commanders, intelligence operations, police, military personnel, and Homeland Security teams.” Their interface helps clients navigate and coordinate when they need it most.
Why meetups? As you have probably heard before, networking is key to a successful business or even a successful career. But who will you meet? And how do you network efficiently? Even if networking hasn’t worked for you in the past, you may just need to try something new.
In her article “Are You ‘Networking’ for All the Wrong Reasons” for the Entrepreneur, Darrah Brustein discusses organizations that redefine networking as it should be. She argues that networking should be “cultivating authentic relationships with those with whom you naturally connect — with no self-serving agenda.” Brustein challenges the reader to not be content. “Continue to challenge yourself by being around the right people and, in turn, seeing the power for growth, learning and sharing that comes from these networking relationships turned to so much more,” Brustein says.
If you’re still looking for help, guest blogger for the Huffington Post, Madeline Bell has some tips for effective networking in her article, “The Importance of Networking (and How to Do It Well).” There are four things to keep in mind, says Bell: be intentional, have an icebreaker, be open about your career goals, and follow up.
Being intentional with your networking means having a goal in mind when walking into a space, whether it’s “I want to learn more” or “I am here to connect with new people.” Icebreakers will be key in helping you start a conversation and get you on the way to making connections. Being prepared with icebreakers will help you to stay focused during your interactions. Also, being genuine and open about your career goals can help lead you to beneficial connections and new friends. And lastly, just because the event is over does not mean that the networking is. Reach out to the new contacts you made and follow through with correspondence.
If you want to meet-up with like-minded startups and entrepreneurs from different niches, it is not too late to sign up for Super Meetup. Just RSVP here, There will be food, beer, resources, and good company. Loople and possibly SameGrain will be in attendance as well!