Networking Guide: How to Build Your Professional Network?

networking guide-blog-imageAs an entrepreneur you should always be trying to expand your network. You never know who you will meet and where the connection will lead. As relationships become more and more essentials it’s important to do what you can to grow your network and build effective relationships while being helpful and visible.

Attend Targeted Networking Events

There is no such thing as wasting time as an entrepreneur. If your goal is to expand clientele, make sure you select events that are relevant and strategically chosen towards your target audience. You want to be talking to the right people and give them your business card to take away.

Volunteer

If your target market is local, volunteer for a position in front of the attendee’s (like sign in person, list builder, event planner, etc.) will not only keep you in the spotlight but give you a handle on the audience themselves. This will allow you to connect later.

Reach Out to A Stranger

Make a list of people that could have an impact on your business and reach out even if it is out of your comfort zone. Chances are if you word your email in a respectful way that shows your appreciation for what they have done along with a question they will continue the dialogue. Make sure the communication is authentic vs. a blind email with no thought.

Connect with Social Media Connections

This doesn’t mean make sure you are all over social media. Use social media to your advantage and leverage the platforms that are relevant to your industry and customers. Don’t just join every platform for the sake of it. Rather make sure your time on social media sites is being used smartly. Ask questions, join groups, show off your expertise and be a thought leader. On Linkedin, make sure you craft a personal message vs. using the default message “I’d like to connect with you on Linkedin.” Make your message count as this is the perfect opportunity to connect.

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