Joining a business group for networking

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    • #43349

      I was wondering if you think it’s a good value to join a business networking group?  I just began my independent video business the end of summer which includes event videography, storytelling and video production for the web and corporations.  So far, I’ve been doing work for people I know and will begin a direct-mail campaign after the first of the year.  Please let me know if you think, as a beginner (who is still doing work for free to create a demo reel), that it would be a good value to spend a sometimes expensive fee to join a networking organization.  On a side note, I’m also joining an local video group for independents, which will also allow me to network.

    • #181900

      Hey kiddo, looks like nobody has an opinion or practical experience here, so here’s me, a total and complete stranger πŸ˜‰ responding to your question πŸ˜‰

      Through the years I’ve tried pretty much all of them, all the options such as local Chamber of Commerce, Professional Videographers Associations and local Professional Business Associations of various DNA arrangements πŸ˜‰ and I currently am not involved with any of them. Why is that?

      Well, as you noted most of the fees IMHO are a bit over the top, especially for what I perceive receiving in return, and tack that onto the usual breakfast, lunch or dinner meal that’s included with their scheduled meetings, the commitment of time (never seems to take JUST an hour) and the overall lack of return while these groups ALWAYS seek to acquire MORE of my time, energy, involvement or commitment to various services related to my business …

      … well, it just never seemed to balance things well enough in relationships or business or opportunities, and mostly seemed to be a drain on my time and pocketbook. I realize there ARE exceptions, I think, and would gladly be a part of a group that seriously seemed focused on EACH of the respective members and their related businesses, truly trying to find ways to mutually help each other out and even establishing programs that were focused on exactly that. But I really don’t see that balance and attitude happening.

      I do believe I have an open mind but I’ve seen so much where it appears that too many members actually prey upon the smaller fish, or take advantage of new blood, rather than trying to mutually put their heads and thoughts and money toward building something equitable for all.

    • #181901

      Hey Earl!  I’m glad you were able to get back with me.  I think we may have discussed this before.  I had read about networking groups in a post I started on video for websites.   A couple of posters had mentioned BNI and Chamber of Commerce.  The local BNI has an impossible meeting time for me at this stage of my life and I wondered if the Chamber of Commerce would be a valuable spend of my time and money.  If it is, I’ll try, but if not then I have so many other things I can do to grow my business instead.  Also, the independent video group, after meeting with them last week, seems like a good spend of time.  It’s a way for me to network, get experience as second camera op, attend learning workshops and, also, a way to get other camera operators, etc. to work with me as needed.  So, I think I’ll probably skip the business networking groups.

      As always, I greatly appreciate and value your well thought out answers!

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