Either you have your industry contacts to organize, or industry organizers to contact…either way I’ve got your back.
I’ll get to the whole “organizing your industry contacts” in a second. First, let me preface this by saying…I am socially awkward. I genuinely hate going to parties of people I’ve never met. We are talking ultimate awkward wall flower over here. Yeah, yeah…I know. “Young whipper snappers who can’t take the time to connect with people.” When I was younger…I would have argued with you. But seeing as how I am now a ripe 31 years (I think), I’m ok with some of the things I’m not good at. In fact, I embrace them! (Remind me to tell you about my god awful math skills one day.)
I’m awkward. I say weird things because I think they are funny.
They are not.
Sometimes I speak the way I write…which doesn’t always translate well.
And I’d much prefer to spend the evening talking to the finger foods than to the people around me exchanging soon-to-be-lost business cards.
Hold on…my cynicism is showing.
Regardless of my inability to verbally communicate with my fellow organizers, I still need to rub their elbows and brown my nose a bit. So, how do I do that while remaining behind the mystical curtain? (I just imagined myself as a giant green head…very Oz like).
Embrace the communication I know best. Sure! Happy hour can be done! But more than likely, I’ll be doing it behind my desk. (I still dress up and pour a glass of wine…so not ALL is lost.)
My communication consists of blogging (We are having a conversation! I just talk a lot…), social media, emails and the newsletter. I can be well spoken, enthusiastic, sincere…and best of all, I can use the delete button. 0_0 (Tomorrow I’ll be posting on organizing your blog posts behind the scenes, as well as communication and etiquette in your correspondence.)
Now, I’m not bragging or anything, but my online party is waaaaaaaaaay bigger than your “White” party. Like…totally crushes it number wise. And? I’ve actually TALKED to everyone at my party. You just can’t do that in person.
[Tweet “So, what kind of people do I talk to and how do I keep them all straight? Easy! Organization! “](Bet you didn’t know I was going to say that…).
I keep a spreadsheet on my desktop. (BONUS FREEBIE BELOW!)
It includes the contact and their contact information, where I met them, who they work for and our last form and date of communication.
The final column is a little bit sneaky. It’s an empty column called “Benefits”. Sure, you can have a contact just for friends sake…but when you are business, every contact you have should be valuable in some capacity. Here is where you list any ideas you have, that might be beneficial to the both of your. For example, swapping guest posts, hosting an event, video interviews, putting together a photo shoot, etc. How can you benefit them, and how can they benefit you?
When you’re business needs a little boost, this list is great to go back and reference! Getting together with another industry professional and doing something fun and unique is one of the BEST ways to inject some fun into your business butt (too visual?).
OK…gotchyer file? Check out these quick tips to get some valuable linage and contacts loaded into your social arsenal.
- Reach for the stars. Not even kidding!! If you think someone is “out of your league”, what will you lose from trying to contact them? I recommend building your list, first, with people that you WANT to contact and work with. You can gather their information as you go. Try googling a generic phrase for the niche you are in. (For example, I would google “Home Office Organizing Tips”.) What publications come up? Who are the editors of thepublication? Who are some of the people that contribute to the website/magazine/etc.?
- Now, let’s take a look at the EASIER to attain folk. Scroll down on that website…is there a comments section? If there are commenters, this is a great place to start! You know they are interested in this topic…do THEY have a website? FB page? Check them out! Perhaps there is something you can do for each other as you work your way to the top.
- Social Media! There is a reason it has the word “social” in it! Instagram is one of my favorite platforms to find people. Post well edited and curated photos of your topic. Include social moments and a sprinkling of adverts for a great portfolio! Follow anyone who inspires you and seems to like your topic. Contact them if you think you might be able to benefit from each other! Check out the app: Crowdfire. It allows you to follow the followers of other users! Whaaaaat??? Mindblowing!! Check it out.
- Continuing with the social media theme…Facebook! There are SO many Facebook groups for blogging, social media, marketing, etc. Some of my current go-to’s are:
Screw The Nine to Five Community
and of course Uncork Your Dork!
The name of the game here is organization and participation, people. Make a goal to make contact with at least one person on your list a week (NO EXCUSES! That is TOTALLY do-able!) and you’ll be fighting off industry elbows in no time!
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