The people you have known in your life suddenly become more interesting when
you start a company. New contacts are also important.
They are your network and they can help you succeed in your business.
There are no better persons to help you than those you have in your network - if you have behaved decently towards them. Your network is formed with people from your family, friends, classmates, sports buddies, colleagues, former colleagues etc.
The first thing you should do when you start a business is to contact your
network with a personal email or a telephone call and tell them that you have
started your own business.
In the email you must deliver your elevator speech and refer to your website.
Your network knows you like the one working at the advertising agency, municipality or some other business. They need to know you have started a new life as an independent business owner. If they do not know about it, they cannot help you.
Some in your network can become good ambassadors for you and recommend you to customers. It may be your former colleagues or classmates who today sit in a position where they need your product or service.
Others in your network may have the knowledge that you need. Ask them if you lack knowledge - they will be happy to help you.
As a business owner you must constantly expand your network, as it turns out that most customers are coming through network. Network can be expanded by the use of online and offline activities.
For online networking, you will use e.g. Facebook, Twitter, text messages, e-mail, specialist forums and other electronic and social platforms. If you are a specialist in a specific task, then you should write about it on the social platforms. If you do it well, you will get noticed.
You must learn to "network" in real life. Go to seminars, trade shows, meetings and other places where people meet and start a conversation with relevant persons. Decide for example to talk to at least four different people before you go to a meeting.
When networking do not start selling your product. When your are networking you are simply exploring possible relationships, and if you have the chance give something of yourself without expecting anything back. It is a good starting point for a new relationship in your network.
It is Ok just to use a minute or two together if you believe that you cannot enrich each other. Go on to the next.
Happiness does not come from doing easy work but from the afterglow of satisfaction that comes after the achievement of a difficult task that demanded our best.
- Theodore Isaac Rubin, American psychiatrist