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Networking the right way - How to Use Online Portals for private and professional purposes

by Hanna Sekanina

From Facebook to LinkedIn - Online portals have become essential these days. They are especially important for private, professional and social networking.

The term "networking" refers to the activity of establishing a network of contacts as well as to maintain both personal and professional contacts. The target here is to benefit from these relationships in the future. Local contacts or acquaintances are not the only ones included in networking. Online portals give you the opportunity to be in touch with people from all over the globe, even if you have never met before.

Networking at a professional level becomes an advantage for private entities as useful inspiration, information and ideas to be applied in our day-to-day practice is exchanged between like-minded people. Also, partners and collaborators for the development of joint projects can be found. Likewise, the opportunity to get mutual support, your dream job or a desired position within your company increase.

To properly build up an online network, there are some points that should be considered:

1. Quality is better than quantity

The quality of contacts in the online network is more important than the quantity. In order not to lose track, one should not arbitrarily connect with people, such as old schoolmates or former work colleagues, but specifically look for contacts that might provide an advantage. It is not necessary to know this person personally.

2. Everything depends on the contacts of the contacts

Upon receiving a contact request, you should look at the requester’s profile thoroughly. Besides, it is important to analyze the requester’s contacts as well for his or her network might be an advantage. If the request is accompanied by a small text, then you should definitely respond.

3. Up to date profile

Online- Networking not only works if the profile is well maintained through a nice and up-to-date image. Well-managed profiles leave a better impression. Furthermore, it is important to keep adding as many contacts as we can in order to have a successful network.

Online Networking also entails a danger. Privacy and data protection play a big role in that context. When HR managers do some research before hiring a candidate, they might get a wrong idea of the person based on activities on social networks. Pictures posted on Facebook in the past can negatively influence the recruiting process. It endangers the privacy as well as the online reputation of the individual.

For both professional development or new challenges search, a helpful hint is to set up a new network through existing or new contacts.

When a company does networking, it is called business networking. This is a key component for customer acquisition, recruiting, cooperation and new business areas development. In the same way, business networking can be carried out at conferences, trade fairs and other events. For such purpose, portals like LinkedIn are a perfect place to start.

There are many reasons for a company to profit from online portals:

1. Company’s Introduction

A company’s profile becomes the first contact link. Pictures and text work wonders to provide information people need to know about the company. Companies should always be driven by their target groups thus reflecting such image.

2. Introduction as employer

Unfilled posts or vacancies may be posted through the company’s profile. In turn, online portal users will be notified about such job posting through their own profiles. Other postings regarding events or additional benefits for your employees will also make you look good as an employer.

3. Content broadcast

Drafting posts, such as the latest article of the company’s blog, can target specific audiences and content will appear in their followers’ news feed. Regular publications will show that your company is active on social media thus increase the level of awareness.

4. Advertisement

Online portals are a perfect B2B channel as well as an interesting marketing strategy for the business.

B2B marketing and recruiting work much better on these portals because users are not looking for entertainment but for professional added value. Accordingly, all factors mentioned above also apply for companies.

A comprehensive business networking advice: No matter where you are, you should always have a healthy dose of self-confidence! Do not hesitate in writing to strangers and start networking with them!

As a recruiting and headhunting specialist as well as personnel consultant, we are constantly looking for talent through social networks and are happy to assist you in the search for the right company. For further information visit our website or contact us via email at info@acensblue.com.

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