Small business owners are bound to connect with plenty of people. It’s likely that going to a community event and putting them on your phonebook is finally paying off as there’s so many to call. However, there comes a certain period where it can be difficult to keep up with those contacts.
Being unable to contact those people can often lead to the breaking of those relationships, which can be quite a waste after all that time focused on it. Long-term networking is something that can really take time to master. However, learning how to can be quite the reward as you are still able to retain your connections.
Here are a few ways on how you can successfully keep up with your network:
Create a Schedule for Reaching Out
Building these relationships takes time and effort, and even more so when you’re cultivating them for the long term. If you find yourself drifting off with some of the people on your list, get a calendar and start creating a schedule. Having a date and time of when you’ll be reconnecting with these people can be a great alternative to relying on spontaneity.
Try to see when you can reach out to certain people you haven’t been able to talk to in a while. Having that healthy check-in once every few weeks with a person can help revitalise your connection with them.
Have Something Worth Mentioning
Picture yourself at the end of another call. What would you want to be talked about? A simple hello is good but, having no purpose or topic to talk about may be tough on your relationship rather than helpful.
Be sure to prepare something in advance. Even just a tiny thought that you would like to share alongside an objective of asking how they’re doing is enough. Remember that what can be a free moment for you is precious time for them, so make it count.
Utilise Social Media
It used to be hard to keep in touch with other people if you weren’t going to see them every day. There were still community meetings where you could meet them, but it was a little harder to keep track of what they were doing from day to day.
Having social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn has truly been a game-changer when it comes to networking and keeping up with your connections. Try and utilise them so that you can check your contacts’ profiles every once in a while.
Send Them Well Wishes
In conjunction with having social media updates regarding their life, message them about it! Greet them a happy birthday and on the occasions you see them celebrate. If they have made any progress or achievements with work, don’t hesitate to send them congratulations and make your presence known. They’re sure to appreciate the gesture.
Invite Them to Events
If you’re going to an event that you deem is relevant to your contacts, it wouldn’t hurt to share them. Post it on your social media and send out a general invite. Reach out to a couple of people on your private messages as well to let them know that you’re thinking of them and nurturing your relationship with them through that gathering.
It can be a lot to incorporate these practices into your own routine from day to day. However, part of having a network is being able to care for it and keep it for a long time. Some contacts aren’t there to stay forever, so be sure to have a long-term plan of having them along.
If you are looking for a local community where you’ll find support and where you can get and give referrals, build alliances, and be empowered to grow your business, join NRG Networking. We are Australia’s best networking community that offers endless opportunities. Join us and meet potential clients, partners, and lifelong friends!