HIGH PROFILE CLUB
Maintain Your Professional Network Without Annoying Your Contacts
By Mireia Contreras;
As we talked on the last week's post, it is very important to maintain a strength network of good contacts. They could help and facilitate the access to tangible resources such as physical and financial capital and also to intangible resources such as critical and relevant information, legitimacy, support or others.
The tricky part, however, is keeping in touch with your network of clients in a authentic way, so you don’t come off as self-serving or stalker-like.
Part of it means maintaining some level of regular contact, so you’re never in a position where it’s been years since you’ve connected, and suddenly, in the middle of a job hunt, you have to send a sheepish “Remember me?” email.
Here we have a series of tips to show you how to walk the line between authentic and opportunistic.
Reach Out On Social Media: These and other social media sites allow you to get your name in front of old and new connections in a discrete way. Keep an eye out for profile updates or posts from your connections that announce a promotion, new company direction, or a career milestone. Craft a very short post congratulating them on their achievement. They see your name, and that puts you on their radar.
Schedule Regular Check-ins: For closer contacts, like key client you’ve worked with many times, don’t wait for them to post something online; some people just don’t participate in social media that way. Instead, take the initiative by sending them a regular email or message. Let them see that you remember from time to time. You can send some interesting article, news and documentary where you show your interests and maybe it will help them on their business as well.
Plan Small Get-togethers: Maybe it is difficult to arrange a meeting with each of our clients due to the large number of activities and events we have during the workday. A great idea may be to stay with several of our clients at the same time outside of this workday, we can meet in a relaxed place, take something while we worry about their business and thus show interest.
Show Your Gratitude: If one of your contacts taught you a valuable career lesson or helped you resolve a tricky issue, show your appreciation by sending them a note. Today’s digitally connected world, an email or social media post can be appropriate as well. Maybe we can post a image or comment showing our gratitude mentioning the person who help us. This can cause a so-called effect, attracting new customers and thus grow the business. “Give them something small, something they can use. It’s a way to acknowledge them and say thank you.” - says Derek Coburn, author of Networking Is Not Working: Stop Collecting Business Cards and Start Making Meaningful Connections and CEO of Cadre, a community for business leaders
Share Your Talent: Offering an assist will give you a rep as someone who is positive and wants others to thrive. Most of the people tend to wait to network until they have the necessity of someone or something, if you are clever, you could offering to do a business-related favor before this happened. For example, you could introduce to someone saying “Tell me, who is your ideal client? I may know some people you should meet”
Always Update Your Contacts List: People get promoted, move away and switch specialties all the time. Keep up with all the shifts by creating spreadsheet that lists all your contacts by name and includes what they do and how you met. Also, make sure any page or site that lists your professional details–your job title, company name, and contact information–also reflects your current responsibilities, so people can easily reach you and get an accurate sense of what you have done in your career and currently do.
Give Them Space: Staying close to business contacts means knowing when to go back. If you send different emails, marketing campaigns, informative or interesting emails and do not receive a response, you may find customers who are not interested in your services. First of all, you must ensure that the person is well, that is, is not in a time of stress, with a lot of work that then is normal to not respond. Maybe it's time to take advantage and show your help. On the other hand, that client may not be interested in receiving emails, therefore, we should approach a form or information message that is deleted from the database. "If you ignore three messages sent over a period of time, especially if you have particular questions in your notes, then you can assume they do not want to keep up with you," Clark adds.