1.Review your networking

What have you been doing for the past 12 months? Check how effective it has been. Cost it out including your petrol, your time, and event fee and work out how much business you have had.

Arrange 2 one to one appointments per month. Once you begin to understand what the people you meet do and the contacts, they need you can then begin to think of ways you can help them. Focusing on how you can help others will help you to receive help back.

2.Connect with fellow networker on social media

Follow people on Twitter, Instagram and like their Facebook pages and share their posts and connect on LinkedIn. If you help others, they will help you.

3.Form strategic alliances

Build a power circle. For example, if you are in marketing get together with website designers, graphic designers, PR companies.

4.Practise your one-minute pitch

Be clear, be concise and take time to think about what you want to say for each event you attend.

5.Ask for testimonials

If you have worked with someone you network with ask them to give you a recommendation on LinkedIn or, Google or Facebook review.

6.Give testimonials

Make sure anyone you work with that does a great job you give them a review.

7.Refine your target market and the people you want to reach.

So, if you want contacts with, for example, estate agents, research the actual companies’ names and ask people!

8.Learn to be patient

When you join or attend a networking group don’t expect too much in the first few months. It does take time to get to know people, build relationships and trust before people will refer business to you. Focus on the support and advice of other business owners you are receiving-there is a wealth of knowledge and experience at every event you attend.

9.Do something to help someone in your network each week!


10.Follow up referrals and make sure you thank people for referrals


11.Be a regular face at events.

People do business with people they know, they like, and they trust!

12.Review your literature that you give out.

Is it clear what you do and do you have all your social networks links on it, phone number and website?


Article authored by Debbie Gilbert, Business Networking Resident Expert at The Outsourcing Way