No is not only trendy, the network approach is essential in the business world. Proof of this is that many communications agencies offer their services to enable their clients to create and expand their networks. As all business leaders know, a good network is an important development factor. To make yourself known, nothing better than recommendations from other companies, word of mouth remains a safe bet. Here is a manual for adopting a network approach and thus gain visibility and notoriety.
The timeless success of word of mouth
On a personal and professional level, the opinion of others remains a decisive factor in our choices. The recommendations of our loved ones have always helped guide our decisions and the same is true in the business world. A trusted collaborator praising the merits of such and such a company will encourage others to look in that direction. This word of mouth method has been found to be the source of a great deal of success across the board. The BlaBlaCar carsharing platform benefited from this, as did the supermarket brand Lidl, as did the car manufacturer Toyota and the clothing brand Zara. Now imagine that several firms are talking about yours! A network is a great opportunity to make yourself known and for a small fee. It allows to gain visibility, notoriety , to come into contact with new relationships, partners or customers… It can thus expand considerably, which presents even more and more advantages. It remains essential to maintain and expand your circle of relationships, but the conception of a network is not obvious to everyone.
Network thinking: the importance of collaboration
An extensive and solid network has many advantages, but not everyone is born with a sense of contact! Some personalities, reserved or solitary, need time before making any commitment. People with a suspicious nature tend to be isolated and prefer to organize themselves so as not to depend on anyone. This method may seem effective but has already shown its limits: it turns out to be impossible to manage everything without the help of someone. In terms of communication, this observation is even more obvious. Advertising alone costs much more and involves a lot of additional work. Don’t be afraid to delegate or ask other companies! A network is used above all to talk about oneself to ensure that you do not find yourself alone in a bad situation corporate image and pass it on to others. Integrating new partners, collaborators or making acquaintances does not imply becoming the best friend of these people, only to exchange with them and to find a way to pool your capacities to benefit everyone. Don’t be afraid to get in touch with companies that can provide you with what you are looking for!
In search of the ideal contact
The objective of an organized network is to acquire new partners or to establish relationships with people or entrepreneurs from fields that are complementary to or different from yours. This strategy makes it possible in particular to gain visibility. Used since the dawn of time, it still requires research and can be time consuming: you have to find the people you are interested in and the best way to approach them. To do this, start a quest for companies offering services that would be of use to you. In a search engine, type in a few keywords and select the companies that you think are the most suitable. If you already have some knowledge in the business, call on them! The network approach also consists of thinking in terms of its relationships. Ask people you know if they have heard of any interesting companies in your area of concern. Then get in touch with these firms, send emails, make phone calls… to introduce yourself and learn more about their values, before discussing a possible joint project. If you can’t devote that time to building new relationships, there are entrepreneurial clubs out there that do it for you!
Create your network: what if you joined a club?
When you are starting your business and you do not yet have a professional relationship, entrepreneurial clubs can be a good opportunity. These organizations bring together professionals from one or more sectors, eager to forge relationships with other companies. Joining an already organized club allows you to build your first network or expand it. These structures offer several options: they generally make a discussion platform available to members, organize events for them to meet… Clubs have the advantage of maintaining the network for you through dedicated means of communication. . However, it is your responsibility to maintain contact with members and to participate in certain events. If you neglect to make contact,
Maintaining your network, an essential activity
A circle of relationships is maintained! If you don’t keep any contact with them, your name will be forgotten. Thinking about networking involves seeing your contacts as opportunities for your business. So you can call them when needed, just as they will thank you when you do them a favor. Maintaining contact with your network involves both messages and events such as clubs organize. Meeting your contacts remains essential for them to remember you. If you prepare an event yourself, your image will be even more attractive. Always keep in mind that others can give you a lot, in terms of knowledge, skills or just by recommending your skills. So don’t overlook the importance and maintenance of a network.