It seems today you cannot go anywhere without hearing about social networks and their value to business.
This is all very good but what happens if you don’t have a large professional network? Below are 10 easy to implement tips on how to build up your professional network.
- Join the social networks online
The first step for anyone today wanting to expand their network is to join LinkedIn. Further look to join more specialised services such as LinkMe, FaceBook, MySpace and industry specific services ad these will provide you with different connections.
- Attend industry gatherings
All industries have key groups and organisations where people of similar background gather, many are free or require minimal investments other than your time.
- Get a personal business card
When you build your network you want to make sure that it is transportable from employer to employer. By handing out a personal business card, not one from your current employer will assist with this process.
- Meet 5 new people
Don’t always associated with the same people. Every time you go to a professional or social event make sure you meet at least 5 new people.
- You are a brand
Brand yourself to your network in order to build it further, the more people know you to more people will want to know you.
- Globalise the network
When you were growing up, perhaps you had a pen-pal in a different country, in a global marketplace you never know when knowing someone in Tanzania will come in handy.
- Become an information sponge
Use a contact management tool to record e-mails, phone numbers, and everything else you can about the people you know.
- Take control of your virtual presence
Make sure that when people look for you online, your image is both accurate and flattering.
- Join the virtual communities where your target market lives
Once you have joined one group, ask the members where else they connect with like-minded people. Be sure to look for smaller groups within larger sites.
- Take a leadership role in your industry
Write a blog to cover your domain, and perhaps create an online community around your unique interests
What are your best tips?