Any business owner knows the importance of networking, but finding time in your already too-busy schedule can be difficult. We know that time is money, but devoting a portion of your week to networking can be well worth it. This is a great opportunity for you to find new business leads, potential partners for upcoming projects or events, and brand new customers. Here are a few ideas on the best ways to network for your small business.
With social media readily available, why not use it to network with other businesses in your industry or community? A great way to do this is to check out their social platforms and give them a follow. You can also mention and tag their business in a tweet or post to get their attention. You never know, they might return the favor!
Start Guest Blogging
Another great way to connect with other businesses is to write guest blog posts. Guest blogging is perfect for getting your business extra exposure, which helps you build your brand and credibility. Once you get started, you can invite those businesses to write guest blogs for your website.
Have a Meet & Greet
Meet and greets allow you to easily connect with other small business owners in your community. When sending out invitations, encourage the invited guests to bring along information about their business and samples of their products to hand out. Don’t put out too much seating—this will allow everyone to move around and mingle with each other. You can also consider setting up interactive activities like fun photo booths and ping pong tables.
Look for Local Organizations
While we realize your time is limited, being involved in a local organization with other small businesses in your industry can bring huge benefits. Evaluate the events and member advantages available in the organization of your choice and what it would cost you to be involved. This will give you several opportunities to network with others. You’re also likely to receive discounts and access to exclusive deals on things like shipping and handling or insurance.
Networking is a great option for small businesses to get connecting with other consumers and businesses in their community. You’ll only get out of it what you put in, but we feel the benefits you’ll receive are well worth your time. Share your networking experiences with us in the comments below!