If you have an online business, you might be feeling pressured to network as much as possible in the first stages. After all, it is critical you reach out to other people who can help you make your dreams a reality. However, when it comes down to it, you need to have the right approach. Networking in the wrong way will not get you your intended outcome. Instead, it could push others away and leave you high and dry. To make solid connections that can benefit you in the long run, follow these little-known networking tips.
While you may have an online business and do most of your communication online, the reality is, physical events and meetups offer great opportunities for networking. And to take it a step further, if you are one of the few people to still carry a business card or printed envelopes, you will stand out and make your networking job that much easier with a physical reminder of your name and number.
Fly on the Wall
You don't always need to be the center of attention when networking. Consider asking to be a fly on the wall of an ongoing conversation at a conference and add something to the conversation only once you feel comfortable. This will establish you as a great listener and a wise speaker.
Give First, Then Ask
One of the biggest networking mistakes is to jump right in and ask for something from other people. Whether this means asking them for customer referrals or to do business with you, no one wants to be sold. You should look to provide value for others first and they will reciprocate if your results are good enough to speak for themselves.
Host a Related Event
A great way to get more connections for your online business is to host some kind of party or event surrounding your niche. For instance, if you are in ecommerce, host a party with that theme. This will attract like-minded entrepreneurs and gain you a lot of new networking opportunities.
Join a Social Media Group
Don't leave out the opportunities that online groups provide. Social media is a great place to start. Look at FB, Twitter, and Google for big platforms to hit the ground running.
Networking is one of the facts of life, especially for a new business person. You can't be successful in a vacuum. Your business growing depends on you being able to get others to lend their time and expertise to your aims. Take the above advice to heart and implement one or all of them as soon as possible. Your business will benefit in more ways than one.