01 Feb, 2017

How to network using social media and the internet

Networking with Social Media

The internet and social media in particular has changed networking in more ways than one.
Here are 3 surefire ways to make social networking your foremost and guaranteed success tool.

Choose how you network

With so many social media networks being popular now, you need to know which platforms to use and how to choose your connections.
Connections:Networkers are of two categories. Those who actively post resources, tips, and other valuable information are posters, while seekers are those who seek your services or products, in other words your customers.
You can find the seekers in the groups, discussion areas and forums and on fan pages.

Networks: If you are eyeing quality contacts, sites like LinkedIn and Xing help a lot. You can find the top networkers here. They have more than 500 connections and a powerful profile and are active online.
Top executives, media, decision makers and the celebrities in each specific field are examples of top networkers.

The invite: Whether you know a connection personally or not, do not let it prevent you from requesting an invite.
Be transparent in your intentions and give a reason for wanting them to connect with you. It may be you are sending a resource, offering your assistance or introduction them a contact of yours.
Whatever it is, ensure the invite is all about the ways in which you can be of help and not the other way around.

Finding networking events
To actively network, you should be attending events. And this can happen only when you know where the events are being held.
A blend of different activities is ideal for networking. Think on the lines of trade shows, association meetings, workshops, lectures, seminars, interest groups, and clubs other than the conventional networking events in your specific field.
You can simply search for the networking events in your city using a popular search engine you favor.
Or, visit sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Craigslist, Networking Gurus, Meetup, Eventbrite, Eventful etc.
Start with a single source, look for an event you like and attend it. Choose another event the subsequent week or return to the previous source.
Taking tiny steps initially will help you get used to the process and develop it in a more full-fledged way.

Cross promote your posts

While sponsored content and advertisements seem the guaranteed promotional tactics, they may make you overshoot your budget and with very little results to speak for.

With cross promotion, you can promote without spending a single dime. It helps in expanding across social channels and gaining new audience.

Cross promotion can be done by the following ways

  • Add social buttons for Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter,etc. on your Facebook profile page. By clicking these tabs users can view your posts on these channels.
  • Strike a partnership with a noncompetitive brand. Local businesses, business that are not related to your specific niche, influencers, not for profit organizations etc. are ideal partners you can use for this tactic.
  • Integrate your email with social media by promoting your posts in the social media via weekly newsletters. Conversely you can get viewers of your posts on social media to sign up for the newsletter before reading the content.
  • You can use your blog or website and embed the posts on your site to gain more followers and increase your promotional efforts.
  • Sponsoring a conference or networking event that suits your budget is another way to cross promote online and offline content.

Whatever way you choose to promote via social networking, your end goal should be to find new and innovative ways to connect, interact and create conversations that will help build the buzz around your product, service or brand. Invest your time and money in the ways that can get you loyal followers.

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