Who Joins a Networking Group...and Why?

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New Study Reveals Trends

Recently, the world's largest referral networking company, BNI (Business Network International), cooperated with Steve Brewer, a graduate student from St. Thomas University, as part of his master's thesis in marketing. As a result of this research, an interesting picture of the type of businessperson/entrepreneur who joins a networking group has emerged:

1. The overwhelming majority of businesspeople joining a networking group joined because someone invited them – some 76 percent of them.

2. Almost all of them found the group they visited to be very friendly. An amazing 93 percent felt comfortable.

3. A very high percentage of these networkers generate as much, or more, business from networking than they expected, and that more than 60 percent of the members have been involved for more than one year.

4. Close to 75 percent of our networkers surveyed are business owners between the ages of 30 and 50, and that approximately 40 percent are women and roughly 60 percent are men.

Dr. Ivan Misner, CEO of BNI, and a professor at Cal Poly University in Pomona, CA, writes, “I believe this is valuable information for entrepreneurs who are considering becoming involved or already actively participating in networking groups to have. If you're in a group already, I hope you take the opportunity to discuss these survey results within your networking group in the near future.”

“As entrepreneurs,” Misner continues, “we like to have the hard facts, the statistics, to support our actions in developing our new businesses. These stats clearly support networking as a viable, productive and effective way to market ourselves in our business environment today. As businesses become increasingly informed and educated about the tangible benefits of growing their businesses using a structured word-of-mouth program, I feel that these positive numbers will only increase!”

BNI (http://www.bni.com) is a referral networking organization, which at last count had over 3,600 individual chapters in 22 countries worldwide. BNI’s Founder & CEO, Dr. Ivan Misner is the author of several book’s including the NY Times best-seller, Masters of Networking, (http://www.MastersofNetworking.com) and the recently released #1 best-seller, Masters of Success (http://www.MastersofSuccess.biz).


Michael Drew




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