3. Meet new people every day
Start networking today. Strive to meet new people every day. Don’t wait until you need a connection, make them in advance. You never know who, what, when, or how a door will open. Better to be turning down partnership opportunities than to be looking desperately for anything.
If you are stuck in the beginning stages of networking, then begin by asking industry peers or mentors for advice and leads. They can help you get started in the right direction through providing contact information of people they know or just simply through pointing you in the right direction. Once you establish a lead, open a line of communication by setting up informational meetings in person, over the phone, or through email. The point is, take action today.
4. Be creative
In the age of technology, you have so many tools at your disposal. Consider creating a unique personal or custom business card. Use online networking resources and tap in to online communities with similar interests and business formats such as your own. Answer questions in forums. Comment on blogs. Engage anywhere and everywhere you find your ideal customers.
5. Prioritize your network
Last, but not least – spend your time wisely. It’s easy to spend all of your efforts meeting the wrong people. Think about where your customers congregate. Can you find yourself in these places and make connections? Are there communities online where your ideal clients might spend a lot of time and you can engage them?
By taking the time to think through the best approach, you will save yourself a lot of time later. Nothing is more frustrating than coming home with a bunch of business cards and no real leads. But you will never be efficient if you don’t first know exactly who your ideal customer really is.
Tara Hornor is a freelance business writer with a niche focus in marketing, advertising, branding, graphic design, and desktop publishing. She writes for PrintPlace.com, an online printing company that offers brochure printing services, business cards, flyer printing services, posters, postcards, booklet printing services, and more printed marketing media. In addition to her writing career, Tara also enjoys spending time with her husband and two children.