Mastering Online Networking
Networking is a skill that is critically important, but often nerve-wracking and tricky to navigate. Now more than ever, individuals have had to exercise their networking efforts online – but this doesn’t have to impact you negatively!
If you utilise the right resources, you can master the technique and successfully tap into a team of like-minded people who can help you to achieve your goals. Here are some platforms and opportunities to kick-start your online networking journey.
Your success at building a network is founded on one very important mindset: that you’re doing it based on your desire to know, appreciate, and help other people.
Mike Steib, CEO, Artsy
Lunchclub is an AI-powered introduction maker that creates smart introductions to relevant people.
You simply have to tell Lunchclub about your background, goals, and interests. Each week, you can decide whether you want to make a new connection and their AI will match you for a 1:1 video meeting.
Perfect for: sharing ideas, meeting people within your profession, making connections & getting your foot in the door.
Meetup is a platform for finding and building local communities. You can use Meetup to meet new people, learn new things, find support and pursue your passions.
Meetup offers a plethora of events and talks, including street art tours, virtual explorations, film screenings and career advice.
Perfect for: learning new skills, expanding your network, getting out of your comfort zone & attending virtual events.
Cost: creating a Meetup account is free, organisers of a Meetup group must pay a subscription.
Eventbrite is the perfect place to connect through online events. This self-service ticketing platform allows anyone to create, share and find events that enrich their lives.
Join a book club, attend a wellness event, or host your own creative workshop.
Perfect for: learning/ developing a new skill, setting up a workshop or masterclass & connecting through shared hobbies and interests.
Cost: based on event
Association of Women in the Arts (AWITA)
AWITA has now launched an online membership scheme – open to women based in the UK or internationally.
Applicants are required to demonstrate that they have worked in the field of visual arts for a minimum of five years. AWITA was founded in 2016 with the goal of creating a supportive community of professional women working in the arts.
Perfect for: gallerists, curators, art advisors, public sector & fair professionals.
Cost: membership fees are £5 per month, or a £55 annual payment.
LinkedIn is a tool we are all familiar with, but not necessarily using to its full capacity. This platform can enable you to follow fresh perspectives from the companies, people, and topics you care about.
Your professional network can help you find a job and unlock new opportunities, so it’s important to build and foster your professional relationships.
Perfect for: job searching, sharing insights, creating professional connections & reconnecting with contacts you have lost touch with.
Cost: basic account is free
You don’t have to become a member of a new platform to network effectively. You can also do this the old-fashioned way and simply… reach out!
This no-pressure networking style can become part of your weekly to-do list without feeling obligated to attend online events.
Perfect for: those who don’t like crowds, more meaningful conversations
Cost: your time
Tips for reaching out
- Focus on high-quality interactions rather than forcing frequent interactions
- Catch up with someone you met at a conference
- Share news with a former colleague
- Organise a virtual coffee on Zoom
- Reinforce a connection you made by following up with relevant information, i.e., an article on the topic you discussed
Taking the Work Out of Networking: An Introvert’s Guide to Making Connections That Count, by Karen Wikre
Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time, by Keith Ferrazzi
Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success, by Adam M. Grant
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