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14 May 2016 Posted by 


Welcome to super-charged networking

By Hardeep Girn

SOMETHING special happened as part our recent involvement with a not-for-profit that I thought I’d share with the readers.

Before I do so, let me firstly talk the value of networking and the challenge in finding that ideal client.

Traditional networking adds value to a business, when done well. It leads to opportunity, and gives insights into whether there is demand for a product or service. 

The evidence in this is the growing number of networking events that fill the calendar in every city and every suburb. The service meetup.com even allows those with a desire to create their own network to do so, around an organiser.

Small business networking is a whole lot different to medium and large-sized corporate networking and typically there are barriers to join.

For example you can join a state based business chamber such as NSW Business Chamber, however unless you have an invite you can’t join the medium and large sized organisations that are part of the Sydney Business Chamber (even though it’s part of the NSW Business Chamber).

So even if you do have a product or service that would appeal to a medium sized or large scale organisation, being able to talk to a decision maker is difficult.

Last year we took on a new small business client that needed introductions to large-scale business. 

At the time, and as part of our process today, is to consider whether a client’s target market needs their product or service.

Once that’s been confirmed, we get to the decision maker and identify the need in an unsolicited manner. 

We don’t cold call and we don’t attempt a short term rush.  Instead we build lasting relationships with people, through events and opportunities.

For our small business client, we needed to develop something that would get the attention of a large corporate.

We considered common trends across the population and one came up that would have considerable appeal to the targeted decision makers – it was film production.

With the high uptake of film content through mobile, desktop and smart TV devices, much footage is shot through smart phones or at the other extreme by large-scale studios.

There existed a gap in the market and we commenced activities to launch a new film company called Know My Life.

Launched in August 2015, we started the journey interviewing people associated with not-for-profit organisations.

These included CEO Sleepout and Cancer Council, and locally within Sydney, Kids West and Eagles RAPS.

These films shared through social media, gained reasonable audiences at the start. Once we understood how to harness effective techniques in sharing content on social media we got views in the thousands.

In November 2015 we started discussions with a non-profit organisation called KARI Aboriginal Resources. KARI provides holistic support to Indigenous children and young people in foster care.

They also provide mentoring, scholarships and a range of capacity building programs for the wider Indigenous community.

Knowing the reach of households and corporates with past Know My Life productions, we considered KARI’s association with large corporates and identified these as targets for our clients. In return we also offered to introduce corporate sponsors to KARI via Know My Business.

Over the months we developed an approach to filming Know My Life interviews with the KARI founder, staff and ambassadors that would be at zero cost for the charity.

This included leveraging filming resources from Commonwealth Bank through their volunteering program and interviews with prominent people in rugby league, also associated with KARI.

In April 2016 we reached a significant milestone in filming and hosted a Know My Life event with the Ryde Business Forum at Foxtel Studios, North Ryde.

During the event we showed some of the filming to a 70-business audience, that included Commonwealth Bank senior management and the NSW Rugby League CEO, Dave Trodden. It was very well received and noted as a quality event itself.

The result for us was profound. We had organised for 10-12 business introductions to occur during the event, had Commonwealth Bank involved in filming content, had Ryde Business Forum help with co-hosting and assembled a virtual team that included Foxtel providing us great facilities at marginal cost.

I referenced this super charged team effort during my moment at the podium on the night of the event.

As a small business you’re swimming with many others. But with a mission and purpose (in our case, the stories Know My Life films), we assembled a significant team that continues to deliver something unique and compelling.

The journey is continuing with using content to connect with further prominent brands in distributing our films from July this year. Networking is not just finding a single event and making contact with opportunity.

It’s far wider impact is in extended campaigns and creating value through associations. Our next project will again follow a super-charged networking strategy and along the way, we’ll bring along even more passengers.

Hardeep Girn is managing director of Know My Business. Visit:




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Western Sydney Business Access (WSBA) covers the business and community issues of the Greater Western Sydney region of Australia. WSBA is the popular media source for connecting with the pulse of the region and tapping into it's vast opportunities and networks.