10 Must-Have Networking Tools

10 Must-Have Networking ToolsYou need effectively market your business in order to achieve success, but it also pays off to develop a comprehensive networking plan. Business networking can pay off handsomely if you invest as much time and effort into it as you do into your marketing. Networking is word-of-mouth. It’s also cheap and relatively easy. Moreover, networking allows you to establish relationships that lead to a higher quality of life, in addition to business profits. If you want to be a better networker, and earn the business that comes along with it, you need the right tools. Here are 10 must-have networking tools that will help you bolster business and grow your company exponentially.

  1. Business cards

The ultimate business networking tool, business cards are not only expected, they’re anticipated. Make yours stand out with a  unique design, jumbo or slim sizing, and interactive features such as QR codes.

  1. Bump

Bump is an app that lets you simply bump your phones to share contact information and other data, including photos and files. When you use Bump,  you can quickly exchange the details your contacts need to, well, contact you.

  1. Name tags

When you go to conferences, trade shows and other events, you’ll invariably be given the standard stick-on “Hi, my name is Bob” name tag. Stand out from everyone else by printing your own name tags in advance. Include your name, logo, an attention-getting image or hook, and your contact information to make sure no one forgets who you are.


  1. Let’s Lunch

Let’s Lunch is a unique business networking service that connects you with other business professionals who are looking for likewise interesting people to have lunch with. The service makes it easy to make new business contacts while enjoying a good meal.

  1. Brochures

Always make sure you have plenty of brochures on-hand to pass out to interested parties. Brochures tell the story of your company, brand, products and services; they help create desire and motivate sales.

  1. LinkedIn

You probably have a LinkedIn account, but do you truly work its social features to maximize your exposure on the world’s most popular online business networking platform? If not, get started today – you can seriously land great new contacts (and work) if you do.

  1. Sales sheets

Like brochures, sales sheets motivate sales. Make sure you have plenty of sales data sheets on-hand, especially if you attend trade shows, conferences and seminars where you’re likely to make new business contacts.

  1. Happening

Happening is one of the best on-the-fly business networking apps available. Use it to identify relevant conferences, trade shows and other events where you can make new business contacts, listed in chronological order.

  1. Phone Book

Turn your Android contacts into a revolutionary new phone book that helps you stay connected with insights about your contacts. Be reminded to send birthday wishes, see which of your contacts are close by and invite them to lunch, and quickly respond to social media status updates – all within a single app.


 

  1. Networking groups

Networking groups such as BNI, Toastmasters, and Masterminds make it easy for you to enhance your networking skills and meet new contacts that lead to hot referrals and new business.

What’s your favorite business networking tool?

Brian Morris writes for the PsPrint Design & Printing Blog. PsPrint is an online commercial printing company. Follow PsPrint on Twitter @PsPrint and Facebook.
Image courtesy zzpza

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7 Comments

  1. Very interesting list. The name tag idea was really different and cool. Not sure about brochures; does anybody really read these things.
    As for LinkedIn, I have been active on it for years and nothing really happens. It is valuable for drawing interest to my blog and website as people want to read my stuff. It adds credibility but not sure if it adds clients.
    Have not tried the networking group thing but that looks promising.
    Great post and thanks for all the information!

  2. Some excellent ideas here to help negotiate the ever-evolving world of business and in particular to aid business networking events. Business networking is such an underused facility in the world of business these days but in truth these networking events could be attended by entrepreneurs, small businesses or even corporates.

  3. Great list! Another one to add is NextIntro.com…a site that matches to professionals with like-minded interests for a lunch or coffee. Think of a LinkedIn meets Match.com.

  4. Very Awesome List Brian,
    Indeed Every One Must Have These Tools :D
    BTW I’m Going to Publish my Business Cards Very Soon :P
    Thanks!

  5. Great Networking Tools for sure! There are so many out there, these are some pretty nifty tools and apps though, for both online and offline, thanks for sharing!

  6. I’d add another one – kind of biased but it helped me speak with 15 execs from fortune 500 companies! It’s an excel tool I made called Network to Success. Basically, I’m super disorganized and get exhausted networking. So, I created a tool to manage contacts, follow up dates, statuses and added in a point system and dashboard to track my progress.

    Happy to talk more about it! Let me know what you all think. :)

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