The Power of Networking for New Graduates Entering Comms

As you step out of university and into the agency world, whether this is PR, AR, marketing or integrated (combination of all), one tool will significantly enhance your career development: networking. While it might seem daunting at first, embracing the art of building personal connections can offer tremendous benefits—not just for your clients or the company you work for, but for you too.

Benefits to your clients

As you grow and develop in the comms industry, one of the biggest benefits you need to be able to offer your clients is your By actively networking and fostering these relationships, you gain access to a network of influencers and decision-makers who can amplify your clients’ messages. This not only increases the likelihood of securing more prominent media placements but also ensures that these opportunities are more impactful. These strong media relationships can lead to tailored pitching that resonates deeply with target audiences, providing your clients with superior visibility and potentially greater market influence.

Contributing to Your Company’s Success

Networking isn’t just about personal gain; it’s a strategic tool that contributes directly to your company’s success. By expanding your professional network, you help to build and represent your company’s brand within the industry. New connections have the potential to attract new leads/clients, new partners or even new colleagues directly or indirectly. All are essential for corporate growth and sustainability.

Advancing your career

For many, the thought of networking can trigger feelings of imposter syndrome or doubt. However, stepping out of your comfort zone and engaging with experienced professionals can accelerate your learning curve and open up new avenues for career advancement. But networking goes beyond influencers. Each interaction whether that is with agency peers, potential mentors or potential employers, is a potential door to opportunities that can shape your career path in ways you never anticipated.

Overcoming fear and imposter syndrome

For many, the idea of networking can be daunting, especially when you’re new to the industry and stepping into rooms filled with experienced professionals. It’s normal to feel a bit of imposter syndrome or to doubt your place among established, experienced people. However, overcoming these fears is so valuable for your professional growth. Here are some tips to help you navigate these challenges:

  • Start small: begin your networking efforts in small, manageable settings. Look for intimate events or workshops where you can have meaningful conversations rather than feeling overwhelmed at larger conferences.
  • Prepare your pitch: confidence comes with preparation. Have a clear and concise way to introduce yourself and your professional interests. This not only helps in making a good first impression but also makes it easier for you to articulate your value in networking conversations.
  • Seek common ground: remember that networking is a two-way street. Try to find common interests or experiences when talking to others. This can make interactions more natural and less intimidating.
  • Use digital platforms: leverage social media and professional networking sites like LinkedIn to make initial contacts or to follow up after meeting someone in person. These platforms can also be great for easing into networking if you’re initially shy about face-to-face interactions.
  • Embrace a learning mindset: view each networking opportunity as a learning experience. Everyone you meet knows something you don’t. Ask questions, be curious, and take the pressure off by focusing on what you can learn rather than how you are perceived.

By incorporating these strategies, you can reduce anxiety around networking and gradually build the confidence needed to make valuable connections that will support your career and your clients’ success.

Networking as a new graduate isn’t just a skill—it’s an essential strategy for thriving in integrated comms. Remember, every professional you admire once stood where you are now and made the choice to reach out, connect, and grow. Embrace the journey with an open mind and a learning attitude, and you’ll find that the world of networking is more supportive and accessible than it might initially appear. Now, it’s your turn to step forward and make those connections that will shape your future.

Written by Amber Ellis

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