Whether it’s in person or online, networking is crucial for growing your business. For some, learning how to network might feel like the first day of middle school all over again. But it doesn’t have to. With a little reframing, you’ll see that networking is all about making meaningful connections.
Creating Connections that Matter
Sure, you want to grow your business. That’s probably why you got involved in networking in the first place. But before you go out trying to befriend the whole world, consider this. Successful networking isn’t measured by the number of connections you make but by the quality of those connections.
It’s a Two Way Street
Successful networking isn’t just about you, and it isn’t just about them. Think of a connection like a line drawn between two points – you and your new ally.
When you create a meaningful connection, you’re creating a line that is durable and flexible. And ultimately, a relationship that benefits both of you.
Attitude is Everything
It’s true. Not all networking opportunities will pan out. But no matter what, you should approach all people with an attitude of respect. By striving to treat people with politeness and a willingness to listen, you’ll more than likely be treated that way in return.
When you’re learning how to network, attitude is key. But there are also some important tactics to get off on the right foot.
Lend a Hand, Win an Ally
There’s no better way to spread a good word about your business than by sharing your services with others. As you’re meeting people, keep an eye out for ways you could help improve their business. To start, just offer little things that won’t take a lot of time. Share tips, advice, or any helpful information you have. You’ll be paid for that time in the long run.
If anyone you know is in your networking activity, recommend them publicly to someone. Referring people, giving them accolades, going online, and leaving reviews are just a few ways you can cultivate meaningful connections.
So, you’ve established some meaningful connections. Now what? For one, keep it up! Nurture those connections and keep creating new ones. As you keep going, you’ll start to notice some pleasant returns on your efforts.
Meaningful Connections Will Extend Your Brand
By lending a hand and promoting goodwill, you’re helping people want to talk about you. We humans are naturally social creatures. When we like something, we want to pass it on. By creating meaningful connections, you’re leveraging one of the most powerful marketing tactics – word-of-mouth marketing.
It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
If you’re a business owner, you know success isn’t instantaneous. The road is long, and life loves throwing curveballs. Amidst the constant change, meaningful connections will come back to serve you again and again. Long-lasting relationships with other businesses, entrepreneurs, and individuals are just as valuable as having a base of loyal customers.
How to Network with Lane Leaders
We know that businesses don’t thrive alone. Rather, it takes a network of individuals committed to helping each other grow.
If you’re wondering how to network in Lane County, we encourage you to learn about all that Lane Leaders has to offer. To get started, apply today!