Those who network regularly will already know that networking is a great way to meet new, like-minded people and advance your career in the process.
Networking as a business owner isn’t only about personal success; it’s an important component of building a stable, thriving business that is going to stand the test of time.
But networking isn’t the same as it used to be. Until recently, many business owners attended face to face networking events to build business relationships.
However, the onset of the Covid pandemic drove a seismic shift in how most of us work (and network). Many of the big gatherings we were once used to have now compartmentalised and moved onto digital platforms.
This article highlights some of the many reasons why networking is still just as important to your business’s success as it always was and how you can utilise digital platforms to get the most value out of your network.
Building trusted business relationships
Building strong relationships is essential for any business owner, and networking is the perfect way to make those important connections. When you have a good relationship with someone, they are more likely to want to do business with you and are less likely to drop off as a lead.
To build these kinds of relationships, you need to stay proactive and regularly touch base with those valuable relationships.
Give and take is also important in terms of maintaining your relationships once they’ve formed. Your relationships should be mutually beneficial; otherwise, there’s little motivating your contacts to stay in touch.
Combating the challenge of building relationships while working at home
With so many more people working from home in recent times, maintaining business relationships is more of a challenge than ever before.
That’s why online networking is so valuable. 84% of people prefer to conduct meetings remotely, making it a great way to nurture your relationships even when you’re not meeting face to face.
It can be as simple as reaching out via email or as sophisticated as following a fully formed strategy that incorporates various marketing channels. When you do get around to seeing someone in person, you can simply pick up where you left off.
Referral marketing and the power of word of mouth
Referral marketing is one of the most effective forms of marketing, and networking is a great way to generate referrals for your business. This is because when you have a good relationship with someone, they are more likely to recommend your business to their friends and colleagues.
In fact, 92% of consumers trust referrals from people they know, demonstrating the power of referral marketing.
However, building a high enough volume of referrals requires a strong strategy and the right tools so that you can keep things consistent and track the value of your referrals. To achieve this, businesses should look at investing in an effective Network Relationship Management system.
Finding the right leads for your business
Finally, finding leads to pursue is vital for any business operating in the b2b space – and networking offers the perfect opportunity to do just that. That’s because when you have an existing relationship with someone, they are more likely to want to do business with you than if you were a complete stranger.
What’s not so easy is finding the right leads. In fact, stats show that business owners have to hand out as many as 2000 business cards before they can see a sales increase of 2.5%, proving that good quality leads aren’t always easy to come by. This is especially the case if you don’t have the right tools or strategy to support your efforts. That’s where systems like Net Hub can come in.
How can Net Hub help?
Net Hub is a game-changing Network Relationship Management system that bridges the gap between LinkedIn and traditional CRM systems. It provides business owners with all of their resources to manage, nurture and track – in one place at once.
It’s completely free to join, and by using the platform, you can send and receive referrals, join multiple network groups, track your leads, and more.
Want to find out more about how Net Hub can improve the impact of your networking? We run a weekly 30-minute demo to take you through how the platform works and what you can get out of it.
Book your session today using Eventbrite.