My father-in-law was a physician. When he attended medical conferences all over the United States, he always wore the same jacket. It was a jacket made in authentic Campbell plaid, from fabric imported from Scotland.
He once told me that he always wore the same jacket because he could instantly strike up a conversation. The other doctors at these conferences would swear they remembered him from one year to the next. However, he knew better. “They really remembered the jacket,” he said, because everyone else was in dark suits or more sedate garb.
Just like Tiger Woods’ signature red shirt on the last day of a golf tournament, that plaid jacket became my father-in-law’s signature. It made him stand out. He was unique. It broke the ice and helped him network. It caused people to remember him.
Ultimately it led to him being elected to head up medical societies. Oh, he was well qualified, of course -- but being memorable helped.
He’s passed on now, but I suspect there’s still someone out there who remembers the doctor who wore the plaid jacket to conferences every year.
All of which brings me back to my point: being memorable -- both as an individual business owner, and by making your business itself memorable – gives you a leg up in business. Be yourself. Let your personality show through. Not only is it a tip for how to network effectively at industry events, but the impact can extend beyond the event itself, to open up new opportunities.