We have a few articles that will give you tips about what to do and not to do while networking. What I would like to focus on is how to build your network. Do not underestimate the power of your network and having one that is adapted to you. Networks determine which ideas will make it, they give access to skill sets, private information and power. Meeting the right person might change your life and to make this happen you need to get out there. These are a few suggestions to start expanding your network right away.
In each ecosystem there are a lot of events for entrepreneurs to meet counterparts, investors, mentors and basically any type of stakeholder. You should be part of some of these events to grow your network and get inspired. You can also target groups focused on a specific topic or industry. Keep in mind that the goal is not to get the most business cards but making high-quality connections.
Startup Istanbul is coming back in October, make sure you get there!
Set informational meetings
Reach out to people you are interested in and ask them for a short chat about a specific question to get them talk about themselves and give you advice. Before leaving ask them who they think you should meet, they might give you one or two referrals.
Be active on social media
Interact with new people, create content that will make your readers react, have active and updated professional accounts on different platforms. However don’t forget that social media is a tool to find people you want to meet and to facilitate follow up after you’ve met. Face to face interaction is important. You already know Twitter and Facebook, you can check here for a list of social media focused on entrepreneurs and professionals.
Introduce contacts that are relevant to one another
You might be wondering how is that helping you. Well first, it will show that you care about those people and it will allow you to deepen your relationship with both of those connections. Second, it might encourage them to introduce you to their network in return.
As an entrepreneur you are probably very busy and don’t feel that you have time to engage in this kind of activities. Make time. Find a cause that you are interested in and give a few hours of your time. It will make you feel good, it will let your brain breath a little and you will meet open-minded professionals who work in different industries and might be interesting to you or might know someone who is. It is always good to have a few people around who don’t think exactly the same way you do.
Keep in touch
You must know by now that follow up is important, if not you can have a look at this article. Although let’s emphasize that the follow up is not only after the first meeting with an investor. Follow up must happen each time you meet someone relevant (directly or indirectly). And keeping in touch with acquaintances and old friends is also part of building a network. You never know what they might be up to. Last point, inform your friends and family about what you are doing and looking for, they might be able to put you in contact with someone. Cultivate your relationships.
“Start today, not tomorrow. If anything, you should have started yesterday” – Emil MotyckaAnd you, how are you building your network?]]>