It's always important to follow up with the people you connect with at professional meetings, networking events, seminars, and other business functions. Timing is of the essence when writing a follow-up letter to a contact you met at a networking event, because you want to reinforce the connection before the person has forgotten the event, or even you.
By following up, you solidify your relationship with that person. Following up also gives you a chance to ask a particular question, or even to arrange a time to meet one-on-one.
It's best to follow up as soon as possible after the meeting. You can do so by sending an email or LinkedIn message, or even by making a phone call. Express your appreciation for their time and include details pertaining to the conversation you had.
Tips for Following Up With a Contact From a Networking Event
- Follow up within 24 hours. You want to follow up quickly so that the acquaintance remembers you. Send an email, LinkedIn message, or letter within 24 hours of meeting them.
- Mention a conversation from the event. To help remind the person who you are, mention a conversation or topic you discussed at the event. For example, you might say, “I enjoyed speaking with you after the keynote lecture at the XYZ Conference.” A quick reference to your conversation will help jog the person’s memory.
- Offer to help. When making a networking contact, it is always a good idea to offer help before asking a favor. If there is any way you can help the contact, do so. For example, perhaps you had offered to connect them with someone, or maybe they asked you to forward an article you were discussing.
- Ask to meet up. Suggest a time to meet up for coffee if you live in the same area. If you're not local, suggest a video chat or phone call. You might phrase it as a chance to continue a particular conversation you were having at the event. For example, you might write, “I would love to continue our discussion of best practices in cloud computing. Perhaps we could meet next week and discuss further over coffee?”
- Connect on LinkedIn. Connect with the contact on LinkedIn to strengthen your professional relationship further. Once you get to know the person better, you might even ask them to write you a recommendation on LinkedIn. However, don’t ask for this favor in your follow-up email. Focus on your connection, rather than asking for anything too specific.
- Edit, edit, edit. Whether you send your follow-up note as a letter or an email, be sure to edit the message thoroughly before sending it. Remember that this is a professional message. You want to make a strong, positive impression. Therefore, make sure there are no spelling or grammar errors in your letter.
Networking Follow-Up Letter Example
Follow-up Letter to a Contact From a Networking Event
Mr. Alan Thompson
ABC Legal Associates
123 Main St.
Albany, NY 12201
July 22, 2021
Dear Mr. Thompson,
It was a pleasure meeting you at the Albany Young Business Professionals Reception last Friday. Your insights into the future of environmental law were fascinating and only increased my interest in the field.
As you recommended, I contacted John Smith to discuss potential job openings at his firm. I will be meeting with him next weekend.
Please let me know if you hear of any other job openings for a paralegal in your firm, or if you have any further suggestions for people whom I should contact regarding open positions. I have attached my resume for your review.
Thank you so much for your assistance. I hope to see you at the Albany Young Business Professionals Cocktail Reception in the fall.
234 Longview Rd.
Saratoga Springs, NY 12286
Following Up via Email
If you send the letter as an email message, you do not need to include the person's contact information in the email. Be sure to include your contact information in your email signature, though.
In the subject of the message, include your name so your contact knows who the message is coming from. (For example, Subject: Jane Adams - Update) Your message will have a better chance of being opened and read if the recipient is aware of who is writing.
More Networking Letter Examples
Here are more examples of networking letters and emails that you can use as a starting point for your own correspondence:
- Follow-Up Letter for Alumni Networking Event
- Networking Thank-You Letter Example
- Networking Emails and Letters