The Power of Reconnection

Written on February 10, 2010 – 3:58 pm | by Brian Wallace |

Building one’s network is no easy task.  I cannot stress this enough: you must love what you do in order to make that work.  If you don’t, you really should have someone doing it for you.  There are different ways of networking: some prefer pure online interactions, others like to meet in person at events, small group/one-on-one meetings – really a mix of all of these should get you the furthest toward your goals.

Something I don’t like about networking meetings in particular is the superficiality of it all.  Your goal in life isn’t just to accumulate business cards – business cards are crap.

It takes a while to really get to know your connections well.  And after a while, it is difficult to keep up with too many people simultaneously.  The famed Dunbar Number holds that a typical person cannot hold together over 150 connections.  So, it is inevitable while you are making connections, you are losing some as well.  Pretty self-defeating, isn’t it? Fear not, dear reader, for I have a solution for you.

Reconnecting.

Let’s work off the premise that it is easier to re-kindle an existing relationship than to start a new one.  Here are 10 suggestions on how to reconnect with others:

1 – Pick up the phone.

This may be difficult for you if you are an introvert, but the more human a connection, the more permanent it is.  Skype voice and video calls are also great for this purpose.

2 – Do one kind deed a day.

It isn’t just about the money.  If you are in social media marketing solely for this reason, well – that’s your prerogative.  I’m out to change the world.  A small task from your point of view can be of great value to others.  Helping a friend and asking nothing in return goes a long way and is remembered.

3 – Keep up better.

“But Brian!” You exclaim. “We can’t!”

Sure you can.  It’s simple to do using some of the following techniques:

  • Calendar reminders
  • CRM reminders
  • Twitter lists
  • IM groupings

4 – Be a better commenter.

5 – Guest blog for others and get guest bloggers.

6 – Interview someone.

7 – Be polite.

I’m fond of wishing people well each morning (ok, I may miss a few here and there) – you would be amazed what giving people a little bright spot in their day can do for them.  My friend @JonathanFields is also a fan of similar messaging, often asking people in the morning how he can help them today. (See Jonathan? People are listening and do appreciate your courtesy.)

8 – Make a gathering  of your own.

As an example, last year I put together the 10 in 10 experiment.  Was it successful? I’d like to think so.  The point of it was to connect with people on a more intimate level, my theory being that introverts or newcomers to a conference are pushed aside and don’t realize the full benefits of conferences or typical networking events.

9 – Another side of you.

Show old connections another side of you – if you were previously talking about work, perhaps sharing information about hobbies and other interests may be the way to go.

10 – Tagging.

Though kind of annoying (like the feeling you get when someone sends you a chain letter), it’s hard to ignore when someone tags you in a blog post or Facebook note.  Personally, I find this more passive and impersonal than some of my other suggestions, but it would be hard to argue against its effectiveness.

What do you do to build and keep your social network? Let me know in the comments.

(Image Source: Haley Landsman)

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  1. 3 Responses to “The Power of Reconnection”

  2. By Shubham on Feb 17, 2010 | Reply

    Hey your site covers great topics and i just love the way you layout your points.
    And as I’ve learned above “be a better commentor”,
    Thanks for the article.

  3. By Gabriel on Mar 3, 2010 | Reply

    You’ve cited useful points here. You’re right, building a good relationship to your readers, followers or customers isn’t that easy. You really need to focus on their needs and they will eventually love you because of your attitude towards them. It may take you a while and even cost you a lot of money when you outsource everything, but it’s worth of your effort, time and money.

  4. By Zunaira Karim on Aug 24, 2010 | Reply

    Great points, Brian. I’m probably going to mention something a little redundant, but asking questions seems to be a key player in reconnecting. It automatically shows interest, even if you haven’t connected with the person in awhile. Cheers for the article!

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