Sunday, September 13, 2009

Connecting with Colleagues in the Silicon Valley

How to effectively network with marketing and PR people in the Silicon Valley.

A couple of times a month a colleague will ask me how to go out and meet new people in the public relations and marketing industry. Since I'm giving this advice all the time, I thought I'd put it in one place. If you have suggestions, please add your favorite networking event in the comments.

The first place to start is Facebook Events. In the San Francisco Bay Area, this is the single best place to find networking opportunities. The digital cork board for these events changes every few years, but right now Facebook is the best place. Everyone that has an event puts it on Facebook because they know it will get easily shared on people's Facebook wall. As soon as you get to the Facebook Events page, click on the Friends' Events tab to see the events that your friends are attending or hosting. This filter will help you quickly find an event that someone you trust has already evaluated.

If you don't have a Facebook account, please create one so you can connect with all your current friends and colleagues. No need to meet new people if you aren't maximizing your current network. I strongly believe that online interactions lead to more real-world connections. If you don't believe me, come to one of these events and I'll be happy to convince you. :)

I've put together a great list of organizations that are generally focused on PR, marketing, technology and social media. I regularly attend these events and I find them quite helpful, well-organized and fun. I normally set a goal for myself to add one person to my network at each of these events. Everyone that attends is there to meet new people so it is easy to approach a new face and strike up a conversation.

Where to network with PR and marketing people:

Whether you are looking for a job, new clients or just getting to know more people, the events by these organizations will help you connect with your colleagues.

Do you have a great networking event? Please let us all know about it by posting a comment.

(Disclosure: I serve on the PRSA Silicon Valley board of directors as the immediate-past president.)


Karan Arora said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Akshay said...

That will be valuable to everyone who uses it, including myself. Many thanks!
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