When building a personal brand we often miss the golden opportunity of networking – both online and offline. This strategy not only opens the door to new jobs and opportunities, but it also creates lasting relationships to build on. Even though it is not a new concept, the power of making meaningful connections has become more important than ever in a social media driven world.
The right relationships in business is a vital component both online and offline. You are who you connect with, and how a brand is perceived from others creates a lasting impression. Professional growth depends on networking, and should be viewed as an important part of your branding strategy.
In what ways can you effectively build your network? Through reaching out, guest blogging, thanking others for their content and services, and sharing valuable information from those inside your niche, and so on.
The best networking opportunities for your personal brand are cultivated over time, and consist of a combination of integrity, and quality that you can offer to people. Being active on networks like LinkedIn, Google Plus Hangouts, Facebook Groups, and Twitter Chats will show others that you are serious about becoming a valuable contributor and connection.
How to build a great network
There are several steps you can take when building the right connections for your personal brand.
- Be active on LinkedIn – This business-minded social network is the ultimate place for networking. But having a well laid-out profile is not enough. By joining the right groups for your niche, and actively participating in conversations you are attracting like-minded individuals to your brand. It is important to send out personalized messages, and not sell to people in your network.
- Attend events through Meetup – A great way to connect with others in your industry is to join in on professional meetings and events. You will be surprised at how many you find on this powerful network in your area.
- Make a new connection each week – Make it a goal to meet a new contact in your niche on a weekly basis, and at the end of the month you will notice growth not only from these people, but also from those who have found your brand through these connections.
- Offer valuable content – What ideas does your brand have to others that will be unique, professional, and helpful? Not only will you become known as an expert in your industry, but you will attract more influencers to your network.
Taking the time to build your personal brand’s network will not only create a more professional, and reputable persona, but also opens the door for new opportunities, which eventually will lead your company to more sales.
We all know how important social media is, yet we fail to utilize it correctly. I like to use the idea of quality over quantity for exposure like this. Sure, you can post or tweet numerous ideas that will be thrown out into the internet, or you can target a specific audience that will enjoy your information and pass it along. The way you target your specific audience is with valuable content that is actually relevant.