Social media as a networking tool is one of the most underrated networking tools for professionals. Through the power of social media, you can connect with other professionals in your industry, and hope to establish a professional relationship that can be potentially beneficial in the future.
But there’s more to these platforms than just connecting with other professionals. It’s also about creating an online presence to introduce yourself to the world, and establish your brand.
Eager professionals must learn to use social media for the purpose of networking. If you’re unfamiliar with that, this guide is for you. Therefore, we will look at social media as a whole, and how professionals can use it as a networking tool.
With all that said, let’s start, and understand how you can use social media as a networking tool.
Why Social Media as a Networking Tool?
Social media is more than a means to discover marketing trends. But as we’ve all seen, professionals across industries use social media platforms to share their expertise, and connect with potential clients, and other professionals.
Simply put, these platforms are where you want to be if you want to connect with them. In addition, establishing professional relationships with professionals across your field gives you access to new ideas, opportunities, and partnerships.
But there’s a correct, and a wrong way to use social media for networking. As previously mentioned, this guide will explain how to do that without harming your name, and brand.
So, let’s jump into it.
The 3 Social Media Networking Tips Professionals Must Learn
Continue reading our points to learn how to network online, and use social media as a networking tool. So, let’s begin.
Establish An Online Presence
The first social media networking tip is to begin establishing your online presence. Ask yourself this, would professionals in your industry want to connect with you if you’re using the default profile picture on Twitter, and offer no information on who you are? Absolutely, no.
The right way to network through social media is to think of these platforms like LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the king of social media for networking. That’s because LinkedIn was designed for this specific reason.
But LinkedIn isn’t exciting or interesting. Sure, it gives access to professionals across your industry, but people rarely use LinkedIn. Professionals most certainly do.
Instead, you want to use the more interesting, and popular platforms, like Twitter, and Instagram.
When building your online presence, think of these platforms like LinkedIn. Add as much information as you think it’s necessary to explain who you are, and what you do. Add your profile picture, and other relevant information.
Once you do that, the next step is to reach out to potential professionals with personalized messages.
Learn to Write Personalized Messages
The key to connecting with someone isn’t to spam them but to be brief, and to the point. Despite the seeming willingness of potential professionals to connect with others, not everyone will go through long messages just to connect with someone.
Quite the contrary, they won’t even read your whole message. So here’s our “right, and wrong way” tip for using social media as a networking tool. We’re positive you know how to introduce yourself to others. But social media is a different beast. Here, people like stuff to be brief, and concise.
They don’t have all the time in the world to read 50+ messages each day.
So, the key is to stand out from the rest by being less annoying than the rest.
To do that, do as the title suggests – write personalized messages, brief, and to the point.
On that point, we also suggest against being like everybody else. Instead of beginning with “Hi,” “How are you,” and “Can I pick your brain?” go with something different, unique, and more personal that will give real value to the reader. Your first impression counts the most when networking through social media.
Don’t Be Afraid To Write Yourself
There are two ways to use social media to your advantage when networking for yourself or your business. The first is to make the first contact, and use your social media profile to scout professionals, and the second is to become an “influencer” in your sphere of work.
Whichever way you go about it, chances are you will connect with professionals. But let’s discuss the latter method in more detail.
Becoming a social media influencer does come off the wrong way. That’s because we see what social media influencers do. But the truth is, everyone wants to be an influencer. Moreover, everyone wants to connect with influential people in their niche.
So you’ll have more opportunities to connect with someone if you’re a more influential person.
So how do you become an influencer in your field or niche? Simple, by sharing your expertise on social media. This is precisely why LinkedIn is so good. You can write detailed articles on any particular topic, and gain views, likes, and, ultimately, connections.
You can start by writing a few short paragraphs to give your two cents or go long, and deep into a particular subject.
Not every social media will allow you to do this; LinkedIn will but Twitter, for example, limits the number of characters you can write when Tweeting.
So, you’ll need a different approach for various social media platforms in using social media as a networking tool.
Once your Tweets or LinkedIn posts go viral, professionals will start reaching out to you.
Conclusion on using Social Media as a Networking Tool for Business
That concludes this short guide on using social media as a networking tool. The potential of social media is limitless, and it’s a question of when it becomes the ultimate online networking tool for professionals.
Why lag behind when you can use social media as a networking tool to connect with others, and establish professional working relationships? How do you leverage social media as a networking tool for you, and for your business?