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10 Ways to Make The Most Out of Your Next Networking Event

Posted by cirvine on February 1, 2017


­­Molly goes to a networking event and meets Gerald. “So, Gerald, what do you do?” asks Molly. Gerald waits a second to respond. He has a million different ways he can answer this question and if the goal is to create a contact or lead, then there is absolutely a right way and a wrong way. But there’s more to networking than just how you interact with people conversationally. To get the most out of your next networking event, the work is done not just during the event, but before and after as well. Here are the 10 best ways you can get the most out of your next one.

1. Know Why You’re There Before You’re There

Why are you going to this event? It may be such an obvious first step that it’s hardly thought about, but it really does deserve some consideration. If you feel like a fish out of water the entire day, you’re not going to be on your A game, and that means less chance of any real connections. Also, it’s worth asking yourself if the event is actually going to be a valuable investment of your time. In general, you should be able to answer the following questions with relative ease:

  • How does my job and company specifically relate to this event?
  • What are my goals (make them specific)?
  • Do the potential benefits of this event outweigh the cost of time being here?
  • How long am I prepared to be here for?

Once you can answer these, it will become obvious whether this event is worth your time.

2. Do Your Research

Ok, so you’ve decided you’re attending. Now what? A little preparation goes a long way. It’s a great idea to make a rough outline of what your day will consist of. This includes which speakers you want to hear, which booths you want to check out, and who you might want to introduce yourself to. You can usually get a rough idea of who might be attending from social media. If there’s a Facebook event attached to it, you could find the attendee list there or from people tweeting about it via a common hashtag.  

If you want to go the extra mile, have a question or two ready based on your research of the highlighted panelist. Asking your question in front of a crowd will leave a lasting impression in people’s minds as someone who is both knowledgeable about his/her field and bold enough to be centered out in a crowd.


3. Be Ready With Materials

Looking unprepared obviously gives off a bad impression and can lead to an awkward interaction, but it also affects your confidence and throws you off your game overall. Nobody wants that. So it’s important to come to your events prepared with any materials you might need. Business cards are a must, obviously, but don’t forget other palpable reminders of what you do: sell sheets, brochures, swag. Make sure everything has your contact information on it and that it’s going to stand out in the pile of endless marketing material that people will receive that day.

4. Dress to Impress (For the Crowd)

There’s an enormous difference between trying to impress 100 management-level executives and trying to impress 100 entry-level game developers. Dress to impress the crowd that you’re interacting with. A harsh reality of our world is that people do judge a book by its cover. That being said, you don’t want to be someone you’re not, as people can often sense if you’re being phony. As long as you don’t overdo it, you should be fine.


5. Prepare an Elevator Pitch

At these kinds of events you meet a lot of people in a short amount of time. You’re going to want to have a quick pitch ready of who you are and what you do. However, be careful when you say it that it doesn’t sound like you’ve been repeating yourself all day. Remind yourself that the other person is hearing this for the first time, so make it sound fresh. If you’re unsure of what your pitch should sound like, here are a few guideline steps you can follow:

For starters, it should be around 60 seconds. In that time you should go over who you are, what you do, and the hook.

  • Step 1 – Start with the basics. This is who I am and this is what I do (in simplest terms). “Hi, I’m Gerald Smith and I’m a Marketing Rep with Biz Co.” You don’t need anything too flashy; you just need to get your foot in the door.
  • Step 2 – Tell an interesting story that leads to the reason for you being there. “I’m excited to learn more about online marketing. This year we found our sales go up 5% just from tweets and keeping an eye on what’s trending.”
  • Step 3 – Drop a casual call to action. This is important. “I figure if I can do learn a bit and make a few connections while I’m at it, it’s worth the trip. Speaking of which, let me give you my card.”

Of course, you want to make it your own and be comfortable with it. Once you figure it out, practice, practice, practice.

6. Let Other People Talk

Almost as important as having a pitch is the other side of things: asking questions and listening. What is a typical year like in their business? What has their year been like? How did ____ affect their business? Keep it topical and interesting, but not invasive. By asking and understanding their business, you may uncover needs that they didn’t even know they had.

7. Spice Up Your Small Talk

The only thing worse than being stuck in a boring conversation with someone, is realizing that you’re the one making it boring. If you say the same shtick over and over you’re going to start sounding like a dull, skipping record. Make sure you sprinkle a little fun into your conversations. Ask yourself from time to time if you’re really engaging with this person or just going through the motions.


8. Be Passionate & Care About What You Do

An easy way to spice up your small talk is to just be passionate about what you do. Talking to someone that is truly excited about their work –or excited to improve on their work—is at once captivating and contagious. When people hear the excitement in your voice, they will be more eager to share their story with you and value your feedback.

9. Don’t be Negative

It’s easy to be negative and start pointing out what’s wrong with the event, the people there, your job, your competitors. Don’t start down that road. Not only are negative people less charismatic, but they are also less interesting. You’re doing yourself 0 favors by being “that person”. Even if you have to force yourself a little bit, put a smile on and see how much further it gets you.

10. Follow up

The event may be over but there is still work to be done. The next day, gather up any business cards or contact information you’ve received and get typing. Email your contacts and be sure to include your LinkedIn profile so they can see who you are and remember you.  By circling back with people you are giving yourself an advantage over the potential crowds that person met the day before.

We hope that some of these tips help you at your next networking event. Just remember, you’re spending the time to be there, so make it worth those lost hours. Although a bit of a chore sometimes, with the right preparation and attitude you can make those brief encounters into lasting impressions.     



Candice Irvine, Blogger, Marketing Specialist, Graphic Designer

I'm addicted to games of all kinds: boardgames, video games, card games, mind games... nah, just kidding about that last one. Or am I?

Best of YouTube Videos January

Posted by cchalkley on January 30, 2017


It’s the first Best of YouTube post in 2017! This month we have a mix of popular videos ranging from music videos, challenges and pranks.  So sit back, relax, press play and watch some of the fun videos that came out in January.

Power Rangers (2017 Movie) Official Trailer

A trailer for the new “Power Rangers” came out and it gave a look into the story of five high school kids who gain superpowers and go out to save the world. Now these Power Rangers look way cooler than the campy 90’s version that you probably remember. Even if you weren’t a fan of the original 90’s show, this movie looks like it’s aimed at all fans of superhero movies.

Ed Sheeran – Castle On The Hill (Official Video)

This is Ed Sheeran’s first music video from his upcoming new album set to release on March 3rd. Ed Sheeran is known for his catchy story telling songs. “Castle on the Hill” is a trip down memory lane as he reminisces about being a teenager and hanging out with friends. The video is shot in Ed’s hometown of Framlingham, England and cast with teenagers from a local high school. Wow, how did they manage to find Ed Sheeran’s doppelganger to play his younger self? Good casting choice!

Sia - Move your Body

I love the song “Move Your Body” by Sia! Every time I hear this song it just makes me want to get up and dance. The music video is an 80’s throwback featuring a young dancer wearing Sia’s signature black and white bob wig. The young child dances around and photobombs people’s glamour shots. Do you remember glamour shots? This was a huge trend in the 80’s when a person would get a glammed up makeover with big hair and makeup for a studio photoshoot. Just google “80’s Glamour Shots” and you’ll see some gem photographs like this one below.

Glamour Shot

We Trained Like Superheroes For 30 Days

Have you ever wondered how celebrities get those ridiculously good looking bodies for those superhero movies? These two people were challenged to train with a personal trainer for 5 weeks to attempt to look like their favourite superhero. They changed their diet and dedicated themselves to working out. After 5 weeks they had some dramatic results. Kudos to them for working as hard as they did! This looks like a cool challenge but I would never have the will power to give up cheese. I will have to just live with my muffin top for the rest of my life.

BuzzFeedVideo $27 Cake Vs. $1,120 Cake

This video is my favourite of all the videos on this list today. I love eating cake and watching this video made me so hungry! These two guys compared 3 cakes at different price points to find which cake was the best. The first cake they tried is a Milk’N Berries cake from a Cuban bakery for $27. This cake is right up my alley; it’s a tres leches cake with fresh berries, yum! The second cake is Espresso Chocolate cake from a Los Angeles bakery for $48. This cake is a devil’s food cake with espresso buttercream. The last cake is a custom celebration cake for $1,120.   This is one fancy posh cake! It’s a funfetti cake with strawberry buttercream designed to look like a birthday present. It looks way too fancy to eat! Try to get through this video without indulging in a pastry! Now if anyone can recommend where I can find a tres leches cake for me locally please?

Super Mario Odyssey – Nintendo Switch Presentation 2017 Trailer

Super Mario Odyssey is Nintendo’s latest Super Mario game that is due to come out late 2017 for the new Nintendo Switch console. This game looks like it would be super fun to play. In this 3D game Mario ventures into a New York style city climbing buildings, jumping on taxi cabs and swinging off traffic lights. And even watch out in this trailer for Mario’s rocking dance moves. Now I am not into gaming at all, but this latest Super Mario game looks like it could even get me hooked on playing it.

Rings – TV Store Prank

This prank was made to promote the new “Rings” movie that comes out in theatres February 3rd. In this video, we watch unsuspecting customers totally freak out when the creepy dead girl from the “Rings” movie pops out of a TV to scare them. I always wondered what my reaction would be if I ended up on a hidden camera show. I’ll admit that I’m a total wuss and I can’t watch any scary movies, so I would probably be beyond horrified if this prank were to happen to me. And no, this isn’t an invitation for anyone to pull a prank on me to find out how I would react.

Jimmy Fallon’s Golden Globes Cold Open

Jimmy Fallon hosted the 74th Annual Golden Globes this past month. This year’s opening number was full of celebrities including Nicole Kidman, Amy Adams, Ryan Reynolds, Kit Harrington, the cast of “Stranger Things” and Tina Fey. Jimmy Fallon’s BFF Justin Timberlake also made an appearance in a “La La Land” spoof.  Watch out for Justin Timberlake’s spot on impression of Jimmy Fallon.

Will & Grace – The Reunion is Coming

What fan doesn’t love it when their favourite show has a reunion? We’ve seen it recently with the television show Gilmore Girls coming back for a new season on Netflix. Now here is another show making a comeback 11 years after their series finale. “Will & Grace” is coming back with a new 10 episode season on NBC in 2017. I am the most excited about this reunion show! I watched this show every Thursday night while it was on air. Jack and Karen’s characters are some of my favourite television characters.  During this show’s 8 season run there were tons memorable celebrity guest starts like Madonna, Cher, Matt Damon, Jennifer Lopez, and Michael Douglas. I would hope the new season is filled with lots of surprise guest stars too. Catch this show on NBC in their 2017-2018 television season.  

This concludes the January’s edition of our Best of YouTube Videos of the Month series. We hope you enjoyed your time with us, and we’ll see you again next month!




Christine Chalkley, Marketing Coordinator

I love things that make me laugh including sitcoms, sketch comedy and anything my kid does. When it comes to parenting I take Amy Poehler’s advice: “Always remember where you put your kid. Don’t let your kid drive until their feet can reach the pedals. Use the right size diapers... for yourself. And, when in doubt, make funny faces.”

#MORE_GoodNews Kudos and Comments

Posted by cirvine on January 23, 2017


Last Thursday we surprised many of our customers by reducing the rates of their Internet packages considerably, which was a great feeling for both us and them! What made us smile most was reading the flood of positive comments from you about the discounted rates.  

Bravo ! Execulink you have just secured a customer for a long time . I actually thought it was some sort of scam but after talking to customer service i was informed that my bill has been reduced by $30.00 a month effective immediately ...Well done and thank you !
 –Glenn D.

I have been a customer for many years. I wouldn't change for anything as your customer service and plans are the best. Thank you Execulink.
–Lenene H.

YAY Execulink!! I always recommend you to people who ask about ISPs. Now I have even more reason to spread the word! Execulink is great!
–Carolyn H.

You guys haven't let me down in the last 12 or so years
–Sean H.

Such a nice surprise it was to hear this in my email. Thanks for the good news and for being the best ISP.  
–Shy C.

I was so happy to see my email today about the lower rates, you all rock and I thank you very much!
–Anna L.

Thank you #execulink you've restored my faith!!
–David H.

You're the best! Thank you!
-Kathy K.


Some people even noticed that they could keep paying what they were before the discount, but upgrade their package to get a better speed or usage rate!

yes i got the 100 meg package now ty CRTC :) and cheaper then the 30 meg package i was getting
–Pete D.

Thanks, Execulink! I was already thinking of upgrading my package, now I have an even better reason to! Very happy customer.
–Tiffany R.

If you’re interested in upgrading your package or adding another service to your bundle, take a look at some of our plans here.

From all of us here at Execulink, thank you for all your kind comments. We love when we can give back to our neighbours this way and hope to fill this year with #MORE_GoodNews.



Candice Irvine, Blogger, Marketing Specialist, Graphic Designer

I'm addicted to games of all kinds: boardgames, video games, card games, mind games... nah, just kidding about that last one. Or am I?

MORE_Good News, and Money in Your Pocket

Posted by istevens on January 19, 2017


MORE_Good News, and Money in Your Pocket

Great news!  Today, we are very excited to announce that we will be reducing the rates of many of our residential Internet packages, giving you, our neighbours, considerable savings. This is a very rare occurrence in our industry, as infrastructure, hardware costs and bandwidth costs only ever seem to rise. To be able to offer our customers a lower rate is truly a special kind of joy for us.

Why Are Rates Dropping?

The reason for these price decreases is due in part to a ruling by the CRTC (Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission) in October of last year, which stated that the large incumbent providers were charging third-party ISPs (like us) too much to access what is called the “last mile” of their networks, from the street to the home. This ruling has made interim corrections to the prices the large incumbents are allowed to charge us for last-mile access.

In turn, this has allowed us to lower many of our rates and give back to our customers. When we win, you win.

How Can I Find Out About My New Rate?

We will be sending e-mails to affected customers notifying them of their new lower rate. In the meantime, you can also find the new rates on the website upon entering your postal code.

Again, we are delighted to be able to do this for our customers and thank them for their loyalty and support over the years.

Ian Stevens



Ian Stevens
, CEO of Execulink Telecom

I’m an engineer’s problem-solving brain in a businessman’s body. Throw in a hint of health nut, a side of avid skier, and a dose of outdoorsman and voila, you’ve got the recipe for me.

Wacky Winter Sports

Posted by cchalkley on January 13, 2017


It’s the middle of January and we are now in the thick of winter. There’s been snow on the ground and let’s not mention those double digit temperatures that we’ve already witnessed.  If you are like me and hate winter, this time of year can get pretty tough. No matter how many layers I put on, I can’t stand being outside in the cold for more than 5 minutes.  This time of year I start hibernating inside and cozying up with a glass of wine and binge watching my old favourite television shows. I just don’t get tired of watching Ross and Rachel’s comedic up and down relationship! “We were on a break!”

But there are many people out there that love winter and spending time outside in the snow.  These people can’t wait to hit the slopes and put on their skates. I am terrified of doing both those activities- (maybe that has a lot to do with my feelings towards winter).  Hockey seems to be the quintessential winter sport in Canada.  But there are a few off the radar sports that some people have found to be exciting winter passtimes. Let’s take a look at some of these wacky winter sports:

Skijoring is where a person on skis is pulled by a horse, dog or a motor vehicle. It’s a sport that comes from Scandinavia and now made its way to North America.  Skijoring can be done like cross country skiing where you can follow a trail or as a race with obstacles and ramps. Fun fact, Skijoring was in the 1928 St. Moritz Switzerland Winter Olympics.


Wok Racing is exactly what you think it sounds like. A person races down a bobsled track on specially designed woks with added handle bars. Inspired by a German TV show in 2003, wok racing became so popular it turned into a real sport which can be competed in as an individual or as a team. So now when you think of making a stir fry, you now might also think about taking your wok outside to play after.

Wok Racing

Shovel Racing began when ski lift operators used shovels to make it quickly down to the bottom of the slope. This sport is simple; all you need is a standard snow shovel and a toboggan hill.  The rider sits on the shovel, leans back and keeps their feet pointed forward. Fun fact- in 1997 shovel racing was featured in the X Games, but was quickly removed for safety reasons.

Shovel Racing

Baseboarding is a hybrid of skeleton, bodyboarding and tobogganing. A person rides face first down a hill on an aerodynamic board. The Bromely Baseboard has been developed by four-time Olympian Kristian Bromely. You can find baseboarding at Whistler Olympic Park in British Columbia. This sport is suitable for anyone aged 8 and up and you doesn’t require any prior experience. 

Our last winter “sport” was apparently founded by the Georgia Tech swim team. They were on the road when they found out that their swim meet had been cancelled. They were also snowed in—stuck in their hotel room in Virginia. So, they decided to do what any swim team does when they’re snowed in-- some outdoor snow swimming. They snow swam in different styles including backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and freestyle. Watch out this may catch on as a new winter sport.

Now these sports all seem kinda crazy to me and I’m sure all of you reading this may stick to the popular winter sports like hockey, skiing, tobogganing and ice skating. To be honest even those sports all seem crazy to me. I may be the only Canadian out there that feels lost while watching hockey (Sorry Canada-- don’t hate me for saying that!)  So next time we get a big snow fall and the ground is all covered, go get a shovel or a wok and have some fun…. or be like me and get all cozy on a couch, turn on your favourite tv show and pour a glass of wine. Now that sounds like fun to me. 


References: Wikipedia
Skijording Picture:  Kaila Angello
Shovel Racing Picture: Lynn Eubank
Wok Racing Picture: DPA



Christine Chalkley, Marketing Coordinator

I love things that make me laugh including sitcoms, sketch comedy and anything my kid does. When it comes to parenting I take Amy Poehler’s advice: “Always remember where you put your kid. Don’t let your kid drive until their feet can reach the pedals. Use the right size diapers... for yourself. And, when in doubt, make funny faces.”