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Where to network in Manchester in 2020

Every business needs new customers. Effective networking in the right places can be a profitable source of new leads, referrals and connections to new suppliers. Not only that, aside from time out of the business it also comes with very little cost so is often a perfect way to grow your small business or career.

There are countless opportunities out there but here are four of the best places for business networking in Manchester in 2020:

BNI Manchester

BNI claims to be The World's Leading Business Networking and Referral Organisation. Last year the members of BNI Greater Manchester South reported income in excess of £13.95 million in new business!

Members are business professionals who help each other grow their businesses through their commitment to BNI’s principal core value, Givers Gain. 

Each week, in thousands of communities across the globe, members meet with other trusted business leaders to build and nurture lasting relationships and pass qualified business referrals.  Membership in BNI offers access to business training, peer learning and opportunities to network and do business with hundreds of thousands of BNI members around the world.

If you'd like to find out how our members generate so much business for each other, then visit a local chapter meeting and see for yourself what it's like. Each chapter has a personality of its own, and finding where you fit best helps you to get connected.

Our members enjoy unparalleled business growth as BNI provides a positive, supportive, and structured environment for the development and exchange of quality business referrals. 
Benefits of BNI: 
  • Increase Business Prospects
    You'll substantially increase your business through referrals.

  • Professional Development
    You'll have access to our exclusive training programs and opportunities to sharpen your presentation and business skills.

  • Great Networking Opportunities
    Your participation in up to 50 networking meetings per year will increase your exposure to many other business professionals in your community.

  • Exclusive Member Resources
    You'll have access to a range of tools and educational materials on networking, public speaking and business best-practices.

To help you get the most out of your first BNI meeting, or any networking event, here are some things to know before you go:
  • Be Prepared
    Visit a chapter prepared to talk about your business. Members are interested in getting to know how connections with visitors can be mutually beneficial. Also, don't forget to bring your business cards.
  • Meetings
    As a visitor, you can attend a chapter meeting twice. Remember to use this time to get know the chapter personality, and its members, not to promote your business. Meetings are high energy and run according to a structured agenda. They last around 90 minutes with time for additional networking before and after each meeting. Arrive around 15 minutes early so you don't miss out on any opportunities for networking, and be sure to sign in as a visitor.
  • You're the Expert
    Only one person from each professional speciality is allowed to join a chapter of BNI, eliminating the possibility of competition among our members. When you join a chapter, you are the sole representative of your field and can develop relationships with others in the chapter as their go-to person for your services.
  • Respect Your Craft 
    The businesses our members represent are their full-time occupations, ensuring they are able to position themselves as resources and experts in their field.

The Northern Business Expo

At the biggest business event in the North of England, held on 17th & 18th March at Manchester Central, you’ll find hosted networking areas where you can meet thousands of business owners and professionals. The whole thing is free to attend, you just need to get your free ticket online.

You have the rare chance to try out four different Manchester networking companies, to find out for free which fit you best. Not only will you build valuable business contacts with the other visitors, but you will learn the skills to make all your networking much more effective. 

Dell Small Businesses are running a speed networking area, which gives you the chance to try a fast-paced session making as many contacts as you can! 

If you want to network with key business contacts, you could even apply for the exclusive networking breakfast before the event opens. It’s invitation only but request your free ticket today and you might be there!
Feedback from visitors who took part earlier in the 2019 event was completely positive and every session was filled with ambitious business owners and managers keen to build connections to grow their business and help with yours!


Founded in 2006, 4Networking continues to lead the way in modern-day business networking, placing our thousands of members right at the centre of our network.

4Networking meetings are vibrant, energetic, fun, and open to EVERYONE.

A place where business owners come together to find sales opportunities, suppliers, advice & expertise… and of course, supportive friends when you need them.

They run 5000+ meetings each year and members can attend as many as they like! The proven 2-hour meeting format ensures guaranteed three, 10 minute 1-2-1 appointments with people you choose - this unlocks so many great opportunities!

If this sounds like somewhere you'll feel at home, then join in and try one of the 4Networking meetings. (You can try them for free at the Northern Business Expo in March!)

During your first meeting, you'll be given the option to become a Passport member, giving you unlimited access to every meeting in the network. 

Your first-visit join options are:

  • 12-month Passport + 1 bonus month: £365+VAT
  • 6-month Passport: £200+VAT
With either of these options, you'll also receive a FREE copy of the bestselling motivational business book 'Now What', signed by 4Networking founder and author Brad Burton. 

Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce events

The chamber provides first class business support to companies of all shapes and sizes.

With over 4500 members (which is the largest accredited Chamber of Commerce in the UK) the Chamber is located in the heart of the City Centre and has a strong presence in Greater Manchester’s ten local authority areas. They regularly run events, which give you a fantastic opportunity to meet like-minded business owners.

Look on Eventbrite, 10times and

These are some great examples of places you can search for your next networking event. You might also find some amazing events on sector specific, more local, or time defined websites listing breakfast meetings, women only meetings etc. These kinds of listing sites or even a simple google search will throw up a wide range of options.

Just get out there and start growing your business today!

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