It is becoming more and more important these days to have a widespread network and with the social media tools we have at our disposal it has never been easier. An active network is invaluable and can open doors not once seen for you but if you do not contact most of the people in your network it becomes an inactive, cold network. Here are some tips to help create an active network.
1. Prioritize your contacts
Put your contacts into groups so you can figure how frequently to contact people. Family/close friends/hot leads would come first and then figure out the other groups.
2. Contact everyone at least 4 times a year
Also mention something in the email that is unique to that person. This is just enough to show that you care and to keep the connection alive.
3. Don’t sacrifice contacts
On Facebook/Twitter be active with interacting with other people and revitalize lost relationships.
4. Try new things
Every month try and reach out to a company you admire and try to set up a coffee meeting with someone. It may not work all the time but when it does work it sets up a great contact. Great way to increase your chances of success is to pitch a value prop to the person your reaching out to or be seeking advice for something in their line of work.
5. Ask people to introduce you to their friends
When introduced to someone from a trusted source it establishes an immediate connection and makes it very easy to turn that person into a friend of yours.
6. Use all of the tools available to you
This means that if you only have a Facebook it’s time to get a Twitter and a LinkedIn account. These are the three main networks that you need to be on to properly network. If you need some tips on how to use Twitter to the best of its capabilities refer to my post “Why Twitter is Crucial”.
7. Read the book Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferazzi
Overall these tips will help you out with your networking efforts but these all mean nothing if you are not willing to put in the effort to stay active with your network. As your network grows it will require more and more time which is why it is important to prioritize your network. I currently spend about an hour every single day on networking (beyond facebook chat and mindless readings of the newsfeed). Is there any other tactics that you use to help your networking effort?