Let’s face it - long gone are the days of in-person networking. Online marketing changed it all over the past decade. Connecting on social networking sites has skyrocketed - emerging from a niche activity into a global phenomenon that engages millions of Internet users. Instead of connecting at in-person events, you can now achieve even greater effect by using social media for networking.
In order to understand how to network using social media platforms, you need to do the following…
1. Choosing who to connect with online
There are two different types of networkers now present in the online space - posters and seekers. Your business is a poster - and the interested people are the seekers. Identify which of these you are and where these groups hang out.
For example, you can find seekers at forums, discussion areas, groups and engaging on fan pages - and posters at reputable sites, blog networks and related places.
2. Connect with people online
The goal of networking is to connect with people. In the online landscape, connecting is made even easier - at the click of a button. By following someone or the content they are posting, you are actively connecting to a specific topic - seeing how you can help the source and how they can mutually hep you.
3. Groups and discussions
If you want to discover the trending topics online, you need to engage in groups and discussions. Most of these topics can be found on discussion forums (related to an industry), Facebook groups, Twitter polls and LinkedIn conversations. Blogs are a different type of discussion - and some of the most famous blogs can help you gain insights on a different type of topic.
4. Making use of analytics
Analytics can also help you connect via social media. For example, seeing the best posts on Google Trends can help you identify where to post, which terms are most searched for nowadays and how you can actively use them to spark discussion.
In the end, the goal of networking is to connect, explore, analyze and make use of information. Online networking made a lot of things easier - and helped many people and businesses to grow their networks.