Ten “LeTips” for Building a More Powerful Business Network

As busy entrepreneurs, tasked with running and growing our business, we understand the importance of building a strong business network. However, attending those business networking functions often feels like a waste of time. At LeTip International we understand the power of a well-organized, result focused business network. It’s all about networking smarter, not sipping wine and socializing.

In a recent Fast Company article on “How to stress your network and fix the gaps”, LeTip Owner and CEO Kim Marie Branch-Pettid talked about the importance of cultivating business networking “power partnerships” outside your industry. “A lot of people think that a power partner is always someone in the same industry or similar industry. That’s not necessarily true.”

“Think about the well-connected people you know and those that are already helping you in your business,” she emphasizes. “Focus on developing more of those relationships.”

Here are 10 “LeTip Tested” recommendations for creating a more powerful business network:


Networking is important work

Treat networking like it’s part of your job. It’s called netWORKing for a reason. It’s not social play time. You need to put together a plan and execute it just like you do for other priorities in your company. You should calendar your networking time if you use your calendar to control your day.

Don’t Sell. Tell Your Story.

Business Networking is NOT about selling. It’s about telling your story. Your goal is to build relationships that will build your business over time. You aren’t trying to sign up customers when you are networking. That is a surefire way to get more cold shoulders.

Develop a Trusted Network

Form a trusted group of people that you network with consistently. This helps build your confidence in being able to keep small talk going. Try out new material and new business strategies on this group first – before you go public. Their feedback, built on their close relationship with you, will help you hone your new approach.

Push Your Comfort Zone by Networking to New Groups

Network in groups you don’t know to build your personal network. If you don’t possess an out-going personality, this may be the hardest type of networking. However, it is worth the effort. So, like all other hard tasks: prepare, practice, and perform. Have a few generic questions in your pocket to serve as ice breakers.

Connect with Your Lost Customers

Identify reasons why your customers left you. Maintain some level of connection with former customers unless they request that you don’t contact them. This may be hard if they left because you botched a project for them. However, if they left for a competitor or if they just wanted a change, staying in contact and passing on vital information to them could result in reigniting the relationship or getting a solid referral from them.

Use Social Media to Boost Your Business Networking Relationships

If you are commenting on posts from people in your network, this helps their posts gain traction and they will encourage them to comment on your posts. This is a win-win for both of you.

Don’t Forget Your Local Chamber of Commerce

Get the most out of your Chamber meetings. Don’t spend your time with folks you already know. There are hundreds of people to meet and while it’s comforting to stay around people you know, that’s not going to help you build your network. Collect business cards and in between talking with one person and going to the next, write down a number from 1-10 on the card and a quick note to remind you about what they said to you. A name of a spouse or child or an activity that you both have in common. The number will be high if you think this is a great person for your network and low if you feel there isn’t a lot of reason to follow up.

Networking is About Consistency and Staying Top of Mind

Don’t go dark during the summer. A lot of business owners think when summer vacation rolls around, networking should take a vacation too. Do the opposite! Find the time to re-build those connections or attend new events. If there is a smaller group of people, it provides time to build a deeper relationship.

Set Time to Research and Read

The Internet is an ongoing source of new information that will help you grow your business and build your business network. Read networking blogs online to get new tips and tricks.

Join a Professional Networking Group like LeTip

The number one way to build a better business network is to join and become active in an exclusive, competition free networking group to build long-term relationships and power partnerships. At LeTip, we have members who have been around for 20+, 30+ and even 40+ years because their businesses were built on the networking processes that we follow every week. Find your local LeTip Chapter here and join us at our next meeting as a guest.


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