This is a guest post from our friend Jeremy Noronha, from Think Travel Lift Grow.
20 months ago, I was a 18 year old college dropout from a tiny village in India whose influence barely reached a few miles away to his few friends in the nearby city.
I had no connections, knew no one in the business world, and I went cafe to cafe and built websites for less than $100 so that I could afford food the next week.
Today my friends include writers of some the biggest publications of the world, have CEOs and founders of insanely big businesses in my contact list, and I’m in charge of marketing for companies like Foundr and BotList. I’ve been appeared on newspapers multiple times and even been featured in magazines.
How to Network with Entrepreneurs
In this article I’m going to share my strategy for expanding my network and influence.
It’s worth noting that nothing I share in this article is new information or a “hack” to networking, all the ideas have been tried and true and existed for centuries in books like “How to win friends and influence people”, I’m just going to share how I applied them in today’s world of Social media and especially how with respect to online businesses and marketing.
Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook
Networking is lot like dating, don’t be the douchebag trying to seal the deal on the first night; Romance a girl a little 😉
Jab Jab Jab Right Hook is a great book by Gary Vaynerchuk that explains this idea on how to apply it online and in business.The main premise of the book is give, give, give and then ask!
Whether it’s making Youtube videos and then asking your followers to support you on Patreon or helping out a blogger with an article to create some report and later request to do a guest post!
Mike does this really well in the travel blogging space (even better than me tbh! Got to give him credit!) If you go through other articles on this blog you will notice that Mike shares a ton of valuable information, also he creates relationships with other bloggers by getting their input in posts.
That’s one of the first time that I actually learnt about Hobo With a Laptop and Mike. Mike asked my input for his post on Fear of travel a few months ago and I ended up checking his blog and was insanely impressed by the content and now we are close friends and even grabbed drinks in Bangkok a few days before I am writing this post for his blog.
There Are People Behind It
Whether we are talking about businesses or views on a blog, it’s always important to remember that they’re actual people behind it all. Those 100 views are 200 eyeballs and 100 real human beings, not just numbers on the screen.
As a blogger I know how incredibly easy it is to get lost in increasing the number of views to a blog or making more revenue that you forget about the human factor in it all.
Similarly with business it’s always important that they are people behind them, people who are worried about their deadlines, people with their own problems and if you can look at things from their perspective and help them achieve their goals they’re be more than happy to help you do the same.
Kendrick Lamar’s got it right, don’t let your ego get to your head. Humility is your greatest friend when it comes to forming actual human connections.
It’s easy to let a little bit of success get to your head, but always remember to be humble and treat everyone you meet on the street with the same respect that you would treat the CEO of a fortune 100 company.
I personally reply to every single email that comes to my inbox unless it’s a sales/marketing spam mail. Whether it’s from a CEO of a big business or from a broke kid from a tiny village in India asking for a little guidance.
Form Actual Relationships
It’s easy to get lost in the hustle of networking and #ABC (always be closing) that the human element is lost. I always look to make actual relationships over “networking”, whether it’s grabbing a drink and chilling talking about life or having an hour long session talking about game of thrones.
By focusing on forming actual human relationships, you move past looking every single person as a gateway towards a end goal or a sale and instead look at them as unique human beings with their own likes and dislikes and personalities.
Don’t Expect Anything
Don’t enter a relationship with another person expecting something in return. If you reach out to a blogger and help them with a mistake on their site, don’t hold that upon them to now do something back for you.
Help out selflessly, bring others value first and you will never have to network a single day in your life. Form relationships, don’t network.