Even though many aspects of business and professional life have changed with the advent of new technologies, networking remains one of the most important elements of building and advancing a business.
Networking for business owners is slightly different than for employed professionals, but many of the same concepts still apply. Here are four of the top tips in networking for newer business owners looking to build their brands.
Join Local Business Groups
If you’re in a city or town of any size, chances are there are associations of local business owners. These groups will meet to share experience, discuss issues of importance to the local economy and, most importantly, allow participants to network with one another. Becoming active in such local business groups gives you the chance to learn from other business owners and to build connections that will benefit you as your business grows.
Many business owners miss out on attending professional conferences. These events are often thought of as being more for professionals who work for larger companies. The truth, however, is that they are still great networking events for business owners. Not only will you meet other people in your field and learn from informative speakers, but you will also have the chance to scout and connect with potential future employees.
Visit Other Businesses
One of the more straightforward ways of networking with other business owners is to visit and patronize their businesses. Going in and introducing yourself to a fellow business owner may seem overly simple, but it’s actually one of the best ways to make a business connection. When trying this approach, always be sure to offer the other business owner an open invitation to come into your business as well.
Making a good impression is essential when conducting business visits of this nature. Be sure to dress well, be polite, and always be on time. One way to help yourself out with this is to secure reliable transportation. If you’re travelling far you may even consider chartering a flight with a company like Silverhawk Aviation or someone similar to avoid any potential delays.
Keep Your LinkedIn Profile Active
Just like employed professionals, business owners should be using the social media networking site LinkedIn heavily. Ideally, both you and your business should have proprietary LinkedIn pages. You should keep both active and use them to build your network through content and connections. This gives you the chance not only to meet new people in your field, but also to do some brand building and marketing in the process.
If you are a newer business owner, building your network is one of the best things you can do to promote growth and ensure your success. Start connecting with other business owners using these simple tips, and you’ll be well on your way to creating a sustainable and successful company.