Rebuilding your Network

Steadcross – Business Development

We used to take this sort of event for granted – sitting in a busy conference room partaking in presentations or discussions about the things that mattered to our businesses. These event were always accompanied by a networking opportunity. Anything form informal chats during the coffee breaks to organised ‘speed dating’ type sessions.

During the pandemic, the restrictions in place have meant that these events could not take place. Thankfully it will not be long before these events are back and we can once again build and nurture our networks in the most natural way – face to face. Nothing can ever match a handshake or eye to eye contact when it comes to establishing the trust and mutual respect that is needed in any business relationship.

The challenge now is how do we make up for lost time in establishing the initial contacts on which those long term relationships will be built. Have we the time to attend all the networking events that we should in the coming months as we juggle all the other tasks required to rebuild our damaged businesses. Sadly all businesses will have lost key suppliers, customers or trusted advisers during the pandemic as some of those we have dealt with previously are no longer trading. Getting back to where we were is neither easy nor enough – we need to build an even stronger network than we had before.

During the pandemic we have all become reliant on technology to keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues, whether that be telephone, online meeting apps (Skype, Zoom, Teams) or social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, FaceTime, WhatsApp). Even though we can not meet face to face (and we should take as many opportunities as possible to do so) we should continue to use technology in a more targeted way to enhance the benefits of true social contact.

How long would it take to build a network of 500 business contacts – people who share an interest. Contacts who could in future become clients, suppliers or collaborators? That would involve attending a lot of networking events, sending out many thousands of letters / emails or making a similarly high number of phone calls. During the pandemic we have been piloting a highly effective way of building business networks using social media as the first point of contact. We have seen response rates close to 50%. Our clients have then been able to build on these contacts to develop strong relationships and high value contracts. We are now ready to launch this service on the open market.

For more information please contact us on 01484 294490 or click to contact.