Networking is a great way to gain new clients. There is no means of online networking that can replace the power of building relationships face-to-face. According to a study, 95 percent of business owners say face-to-face meetings are essential for long-term business relationships. Not being a part of these groups is simply not an option if we want to grow our business. Despite operational difficulties this is a way to learn and figure out new ways to fine-tune strategies to increase opportunities as we gain knowledge through others' expertise. Networking will open doors to people whom we may not have had the opportunity to meet otherwise. A few advantages to networking include:
- Exposure/Connections: Being able to be in-front of people will increase the chances of gaining business, after all many times is about who we know. Tapping into other’s network increases the range of business and knowledge.
- Building a reputation: We may find ourselves offering helpful advice and gain more leads and referrals.
- Increased confidence/self-satisfaction: As we speak to more people, we find that we become better at introductions and networking. As a small business owner this is essential as we build connections.
- Information sharing: Networking provides opportunities to ask questions and receive feedback.