Establishing loose connections online

Last week we talked about how to expand your pool of loose connections through in-person contact. This week I will talk about how to make new connections over the Internet.

You probably wonder why, as a PR person, I am harping on all this connection business. Frankly, your ability to easily connect and quickly establish trust with others is a pretty good indicator of your ability to nurture the leads that come from PR and marketing channels into new business.

PR and marketing is critical to lead generation and provides evidence prospective clients can point to if they need to confirm (or defend) the wisdom of their decision to hire you. I just want to help connect the dots or point out ways you can actively leverage the recognition to start conversations with people who want your services.

Anyway, back to the task at hand. Here are five things you can do to widen your circle of loose connections online:

  1. Email the author of the last good business book you read, complimenting them and letting them know what insights you gleaned from it and how it will positively impact your business.
  2. Follow a few influential blogs and join the conversation in the comments. Email the blogger and offer yourself up as a resource.  How to pitch to bloggers.
  3. Study the connections of others on your LinkedIn and ask for an introduction. Once introduced offer yourself (and your connections) up as a resource.
  4. Join Twitter, follow people you admire and comment on their tweets via the @ function. Also consider creating or participating in an industry Tweet Chat.
  5. Search for former colleagues or school alumni on LinkedIn and send them a note asking to reconnect.

Feel free to add your own ideas to this list in the comments, I’ll do the same as I think of them.

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