Networking Tools

4 Must-Have Networking Tools

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The biggest mistake job seekers make today is sitting behind a computer for hours searching the job boards. This is especially true for millennials because they are more accustomed to texting, not talking.

But I am here to tell you that networking makes a difference. Not only is it a good chance to meet like minded people, but it’s a great way to improve your communication skills. If you are a shy or introverted individual, networking can, over time, make you a better communicator.

4 Must-Have Networking Tools

Here are four great networking tools to help you get started:

1. LinkedIn

Whenever I attend a networking event, I make a point to ask for a person’s business card so I can go back and connect with them on LinkedIn. I do my best to connect the day after each event so I don’t forget. It’s a great tactic to increase your connections. I usually invite them by sending a personalized message about where we met. LinkedIn is more than just a business network. I call it my ‘virtual rolodex’.

2. Meetup

There are many other cool tools to help you network better. Meetup.com and Eventbrite are two popular event sites that have a ton of business groups and events to interact with. I belong to several meetups related to recruiting. There are meetups for just about every topic under the sun. Just search and you shall find!

3. 99 Events

If you want to make your search for networking events even easier, consider a tool like 99events.com. It’s an event search engine that searches Meetup, Eventbrite, Eventful, and other event directories. Think of it as ‘indeed.com for events’. One of the best uses of the site is searching for career related events. Just type in ‘career’ and your city and state to see what’s around you. Here’s a sample list of career events in New York City.

4. Meet Meme

Once you get to events, you’ll need a business card to promote yourself. If you’re looking for a job, consider using cards from Meet Meme. They offer cards that look similar to baseball cards with your social profile info from Twitter and other sites. Cards like this are a great way to stand out.

About the author: Chris Russell is a veteran of the online recruiting and considered the ‘mad scientist of the online recruiting’ world.  Currently he is CEO of CareerCloud.com. Learn more by checking out his social resume.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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5 comments

  1. I’ve found Meetup more effective for networking than the other three. I’ve been to plenty semi-formal meetups that have helped find headhunters, it staffing firms, and even actual straight interviews through the them. LinkedIn has helped really keep my connections from the west coast though.

  2. Facebook is important as a public issues and politics forum. It would be helpful to have a profile on it for that especially if media or advertising or art or NGOs or research is your job. Politicians MUST use it. But it has peaked due to its many privacy issues and its foolish governance choices I think.

    Quora I would recommend for building a reputation for answering hard questions.

    Wikipedia editing on a narrow range of subjects as yourself is also worthwhile if only because you can efficiently update yourself on those and learn mediawiki. This is to wiki what Linux was to OS… a slow steady long term universal standard you will find in more and more intranets and public forums.

    Great advice otherwise.

  3. @cecilia, yes agreed, 99events also searches any facebook events that exisit as long as the event has the proper location info

  4. Good article – The best way to advance your career, whether unemployed or working, is to network and these ideas help you to do this. Use all of the social media platforms you are comfortable with, as well as In-Real-Life networking. I agree with Cecilia, Facebook is not just for friends and family, it’s a great way to connect with good people who can help on your career journey. Thanks Folks

  5. I’m surprised Facebook didn’t make the list, with their events feature, especially one attached to a group, business or fan page.

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