Networking In The Digital Age

How To Find Business Connections Online

The global Coronavirus pandemic has changed almost every aspect of the business market; from the way we communicate to what customer-facing staff wear and beyond.

In the corporate networking market, the virus has upended all 2020 plans, with almost all physical events either cancelled or moved online.

As the events industry looks set to evolve following the pandemic, many networking events might be held online in the future.

Alongside virtual events, there are also a variety of other ways that business professionals can find business contacts online; here’s a selection of them to help you if you’re trying to network during the lockdown.

Check Out Professional Social Media Platforms

Professional social media platforms like LinkedIn are designed to offer unique networking opportunities for businesses and give you the chance to find the influencers and trend-setters in your market.Set up a profile, if you don’t have one already, then follow influential members of your market and comment on their posts. Over time, you’ll develop an online relationship with them. You’ll also get the benefit of their wisdom and insight without having to meet them in person.

Comment On Articles By Experts

When you read articles by an expert whose opinions you admire and respect, you might think that it’s impossible to get them to notice you. After all, if you just reach out to them cold, then they might ignore you. A great way to engage with them is to comment on their article. Be polite and praise their work, as well as offering your own unique insight and opinions. Many writers enjoy replying to comments, and if they see that you are regularly engaging with their work, then they will come to remember your name. They might even reach out to you directly to continue your conversation privately, which will help you to grow your network and learn more about their ideas.

Read Company Reports

If you’ve met someone online, but are unsure if they’re a business contact that you should be working alongside, then check out their company report. This can be done via a site such as reportingaccounts.comwhich offers clear information on everything from business performance to company credit scores, so you can see if the individual you’re speaking with has the business acumen to help you. If you’re planning on hiring your new contact and outsourcing part of your organisation to them, then you can find out if they have a stable company before you invest your money in their offering.

Subscribe To Newsletters

Email newsletters are an ideal way to find out more about your industry peers and the work they undertake. You can then use this information to find common areas of interest to talk to them about, or just to learn more about your market quickly and easily. Sign up to a range of email newsletters so that you are always ahead of the latest updates in your market and able to give an informed opinion that shows you in the best possible light.

Take Part In Virtual Q&As

Thanks to the pandemic, many experts from across the corporate landscape have a lot fo free time on their hands and have had physical events and talks cancelled. As a result, many of them are choosing to host virtual conferences and online Q&As to engage with customers and business contacts. Use your LinkedIn account and newsletter subscriptions to find out what virtual events are going on and then attend the ones that interest you the most. Many of these events allow participants to interact with one another and their host, so you could find yourself finding a wide range of business contacts when you attend a virtual conference.

Review Business Books Online

Reading books that share information on your market is an ideal way to grow your knowledge and find out about the latest developments in your niche. Once you’ve read a new book, try reviewing it on Amazon, Good Reads or another book review site to share your thoughts and encourage conversation with the author and other interested readers. Make your review positive, even if you didn’t enjoy the book, and give them constructive criticism.

Encourage Your Industry Peers To Come To You

It’s all very well and good building a network manually, but you can also draw in others and extend your list of corporate contacts by encouraging them to follow and reach out to you. Try creating a blog, sharing your opinions on professional social media sites and more. A blog is a great place to start networking, as they’re easy to create and invite commentary. By blogging and sharing your opinions, you’ll be able to show that you are interested in networking with influencers in your market.

Networking is a crucial part of any business strategy, but it requires effort, hard work and time to achieve a collection of contacts that will bring value to your organisation. This article should help you to find business contacts online and grow your business despite the challenges the entire corporate market faces.

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