Networking at Art Events can be daunting. Here are a few tips to help you on your way:
1. When you arrive at the event don't gravitate toward the person that you know right away. Strike up conversation with someone you don't know and stick to the plan of meeting some new people.
2. Ask a few questions to engage people and then shut up and listen. When you ask another question or add a comment try to use their name - it will make it easier to remember their name later and people like to be addressed by their name.
3. Have business cards on hand and easy to grab - no awkaward/frantic digging through bags, purses and backpacks. Don't be to quick on the draw with handing out your card - it should be at a natural point in the converstaion. In fact - your goal can be to have people ask you for your card. If you have a card with some white space on one side then you an use the card to jot down info or a website that you want to share with someone based on their interests that they may talk about. A sneaky way to give them your card - maybe - but also a valuable way to connect.
4. Standing near the bar or door at an event is a great place to engage someone that you don't know - you are less at a risk of interrupting their conversation. Or engage people who seem to be by themsleves.
5. Take every opportunity to introduce people to others at the event. This will assert you as someone who is good at networking.
6. Follow-up with people within 72 hours if possible - add them on Facebook send a friendly email etcetera.