"Positive Networking is not all about you. It’s discovering what you can do for someone else. While there is a place for transactional networking, the majority of networking opportunities are not about closing a sale but opening a relationship. People do business with people they know and trust.” -From Work The Pond: The power of positive networking.
Looking at your networking and connecting as how you can help or add value to others is the best way to go about building and creating a strong and enduring business or professional network. The most important thing to remember when seeking to create business connections online is to avoid the traditional selling process or relationship marketing as it is sometimes referred as. In Keith Ferrazzi's book "Never Eat Alone" he talks about how a business plan should also contain a relationship plan. Who are you going to need to connect with in the future as your business grows.
1. A few strong connections is often better than dozens of loose ones
2. Don't meet for the first time with a selling motive
3. Get your first meeting for advice, to exchange ideas or to learn more over coffee or skype
4. You need people to Know --> Like --> Trust --> Buy you. Note: Buy comes last.
5. Read books to enhance your soft skills and networking abilities (Never eat alone)
6. Don't get stuck talking to a few people or people you know when networking.
Social Media for Personal Branding and Marketing