How Business Networking Can Help Launch Your Small Business From the Ground Up

What is key in any business success story is an adequate networking plan–a plan that can help launch your small business from the ground up.

Generally, it is hard for a new business to become noticed, and even harder to gain your first few clients without any success stories to back up your claims. Your formal marketing plan should therefore project the right networking mix. The right networking mix is about being proactive-in a sense that you leverage your business and personal connections to bring you regular supply of new customers. The whole idea about business networking involves relationship building-and it must be strategic and focused on networking for business growth.

Professional Network Services

With business networking, you step up to the challenge to find avenues of opportunity that you may have otherwise never discovered. You really do not want to start your business to fail due to the decisions that you the owner makes. In other words, for your enterprise to grow, you have to be prepared to work hard, make decisions, and spend money where it matters. For instance, you may consider using a few prominent networking organizations who have successfully created models of business networking activity. A few notable examples of professional network services include LinkedIn, Viadeo, XING, and WiseStep. Using these professional network services can, in fact, be most effective in terms of generating business opportunities than advertising or public relations efforts.

Online business networking can also be a cost effective method of launching your small business. Businesses are today increasingly using social networks as a means of growing their circle of contacts and promoting themselves and their business online. And with the global expansion of businesses, social networks make it easier to keep in touch with other business contacts around the world.

Small Business Awards

Further, face-to-face networking through referral business clubs also have the potential for higher quality business relationships. There are also a vast majority of awards given to businesses locally, countrywide, and globally. The different type of these awards, such as, but not limited to, small business awards, innovation awards, new business awards, local and entrepreneurial awards, are a great way to project your business accomplishments to a wide range of community of prospects. For instance, for more than 50 years, National Small Business Week has recognized the outstanding achievements of America’s small businesses for their contribution in their local communities and to the nation’s economy. The range of National Small Business Week award categories include:

· Small Business Person of the Year Award

· Small Business Exports of the Year Award

· Small Business Development Centre Excellence and Innovation Award

· Veterans Business Outreach Center Excellence in Service Award

· Women’s Business Center of Excellence Award

The US Chamber of Commerce also hosts the Dream Big Small Business of the Year Awards Program sponsored by Sam’s Club. The other National Small Business Awards you can win cash for, gain national recognition and valuable networking opportunities include:

· The SCORE Awards

· The American Business Awards

· Inc. 500/5000 Awards

· Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Women Awards

· Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award

· The Better Business Bureau Torch Awards for Marketplace Trust

· The SVN Innovation Awards

Applying for some of these awards is crucial when it comes to recognition. Research is vital when trying to find awards you fit into. Researching far ahead of time and making a list is probably the best way to enter into as many awards as possible. Even though some awards have fees, enter any way, because the reward for your business would be huge. And when you get any awards, you get to put the award on your website and social sites as show of early accomplishments.

Entrepreneur Mindset – Business Networking For Success

Networking refers to the practice of interacting with associates, fellow entrepreneurs, colleagues and other people to build a network of far-reaching contacts. Today, networking has become an integral element of conducting business as it helps to reach wider audiences and perhaps maximize client base in the process. A very famous entrepreneur Robert Kiyosaki once stated that the rich get where they are because they understand the value of creating strong networks.

An entrepreneur has to realize the benefits networking has to offer and subsequently take steps to create a strong and large network of contacts. A modern business thrives on networking to generate business referrals. These referrals, in turn, help the business to function and flourish.

Steps to Build Business Networks

“It isn’t what you know but who you know that makes a difference” – this is an age-old adage and it stands true till date specifically in the business industry.

The significance and potential of a strong and powerful business network are immense.

Aspiring entrepreneurs can take the following steps to build strong business networks:

1. Attend Business Breakfasts: Business breakfasts present an opportunity for entrepreneurs to mingle and interact. This opportunity can be exploited to best use by socializing and thus creating contacts.

2. Join Trade and Business Associations: Trade and business associations aim to serve the local or regional business community. Several entrepreneurs and businesspersons join these associations to take advantage of the numerous benefits they have to offer. As a result, they have a large member base; this provides an opportunity to get to know other entrepreneurs from diverse industries and to learn from their experiences.

3. Business Card: A business card is an identity of an entrepreneur; it reflects the values and the ideas one stands for. It is extremely important to have an impressive business card that gives the right vibes; in the absence of the person, the business card should have the potential to present the right image of the entrepreneur as well as the business.

4. Host Seminars: Seminars are a form of academic instruction on particular topics offered by professional organizations in which individuals from different businesses participate. Hosting such seminars helps the attendees to get to know the speaker and also his/her background. This goes a long way to initiate and maintain business contacts.

5. Attend Seminars: Attending seminars is a good way to meet people with similar interests and to create contacts that help to build a professionally sound business network.

6. Active Referral Systems: It is imperative to have active referral systems in place. These help the entrepreneur to refer one’s work to other business owners. In this manner, other business owners will also refer the entrepreneur to their contacts. This helps to build more business and make more progress. The ability to generate referrals from other business owners is the single most relevant benefit of having a strong business network.

7. Public Speaking Skills: In order to maintain a strong business network, it is quite important to be able to interact and communicate effectively with people. This requires that the entrepreneur practices public speaking and sharpens his/her communication skills to be able to better interact with others and to leave a mark in their minds.

8. Buy Business Owners Lunch: In order to maintain the contacts in one’s network, it helps immensely to buy lunch for different business owners occasionally. Lunch time provides the opportunity to catch up on the latest business trends and market forces and also to communicate on a one-to-one basis. Having lunches together des not take away from the time assigned for daily tasks and also helps to stay in touch.

9. Participate in Local Community Events: Local community events and charities present good opportunities to market oneself and the business. It is helpful to get behind their scenes and help with their organization; this creates a good public reputation and a good image for business owners. Other business owners would also like to interact and learn from this image-building step.

10. Regular Press Releases: Press releases are a good means of communicating the recent changes and developments in the business to the public. Press releases also have and edge over regular advertising copy as they tend to be more authoritative and trustworthy. Thus, press releases should be regularly submitted to stay evident in people’s mind and to increase business awareness that helps to build contacts.

Benefits of Networking

Businesses with strong networks have an edge over its competition in numerous ways.

First, strong business networks are more updated with the latest business news. This helps entrepreneurs to learn about business prospects prior to others in the community. A business grapevine is an informal source of information and news; entrepreneurs with strong business networks are more aware of the information passing out in the grapevine.

Second, well-networked entrepreneurs are perceived as authority figures and leaders for others to follow. In business, perception is everything; people like to work with those people who are perceived as key players in the community. Third, a good network provides wider exposure which comes down to more capital investment opportunities. Investors tend to be more comfortable investing in businesses whose entrepreneurs are well-known and respected.

Ideas to Boost Your Business Network

1. Sponsor a series of business awards within the community

2. Start a business networking breakfast and invite special speakers

3. Interview various business experts and make the interviews available on the business’ website as pod casts or mini reports

4. Start a forum on your business website and invite other business people to join

Successful entrepreneurs have realized the value of networking and have reaped its benefits in the form of success and prosperity. They don’t indulge in networking every now and then rather they are constantly involved in the process of networking and creating strong business contacts.

Using Online Business Networking to its Fullest Effect

Networking is a key part of business success. By definition a business does not operate in a vacuum, it has customers and suppliers, both of which will be networking with your company in one form or another. As a logical extension of this, traditional – or offline – networking events have long been used as a way of meeting interesting and valid new contacts. Perhaps they are new clients, perhaps new suppliers, and in a social setting perhaps new partners. The human touch of these events helps to separate the people we want to deal with from the people we don’t. Given these obvious factors in favour of traditional networking why do business networking websites exist and how can they be used to our benefit?

Business networking websites, such as Global Business Networking, are relatively few and far between, especially when compared to social networking websites. They do however have some significant advantages when used in a complimentary way to traditional networking. Here we list the principal advantages of online networking:

1. The main advantage online business networking has over more traditional forms of networking is the same advantage the internet has over television or printed media. You decide when you’re going to network, where you’re going to network and with whom. With a traditional networking event you’re forced to attend at the time and place the organisers decide. With online networking you decide when you’re going to network – all you need is a computer and internet connection (plus a membership fee if the site(s) you belong to require fee membership). If you wish to network at 3am your time that’s your prerogative.

2. The second benefit to online networking is the ability to network with people outside of your immediate geographic locale. As economies have expanded over the decades and businesses have outsourced both potential clients and potential suppliers are located further and further away. In many cases this can make personal visits expensive and time-consuming due to air-fares, hotel bills, expense tabs etc. Online networking neatly deals with these issues and allows you to network with anyone around the world. If you need to purchase cloth from China or raw materials from Africa a business networking website can help connect you with potential suppliers and customers.

3. The third advantage is one of personal safety and anonymity. Ever been to a networking event and wished that creep in the brown suit would leave you alone? Or you’re concerned about giving out your contact details to a bunch of strangers? A good business networking website will ensure your personal details are hidden whilst still allowing potential contacts to communicate with you (generally through the site rather than direct).

There is no getting away from the fact that online business networking misses the personal human contact really needed to properly assess an individual. To attempt to get around this shortfall many sites have a chat or IM (Instant Messenger) facility on the site. These can allow site users to attain a certain level of knowledge about each other which is more detailed than simple emails or faxes. However they do not replace human contact – and this is one of the key reasons online business networking should be used in conjunction with traditional networking methods.

Used as part of a holistic approach to networking, using business networking websites can significantly increase your networking success and thereby positively affect your business results.

5 Special Ways for Your Next Presentation

1. Introduce relevant and meaningful quote

You will learn that the one who need motivation is the one who can’t predict the future. From these wise words, it can be concluded that in having presentation, always start with relevant quote. Introducing topic with meaningful quote will always be better. However, you should to make sure that the quote you will present is related with the topic. Many quotes from famous people are available in online. Browse it and use it to open your presentation.

2. Share the common things

It is the best way to attract the audience by connecting the common shares. First you may have the mini research on your audience. Sharing the same common things will work well as they can get many lessons from your experiences. Sometimes, you will be surprised as well while doing research that you find something interesting. You may find that people’s characteristic and their attitude toward the business. This is what you should learn in presentation training.

3. Involve them to think

The audiences suppose to spoke in the presentation specifically in the beginning. Firstly, it’s important to encourage them to think. This one is to get the attention and interest of the audiences. You can ask them questions. There are many questions can be asked for the beginning of the presentation. You can learn it from online or just find them by yourself. The question, of course, should have relation with the topic of the presentation.

4. Challenge yourself

When you are not presenting, take your time also to observe the audiences. Some of them are sitting in the same seats. Some presenters are presenting the same materials. Moreover, some audiences will ask the same questions. It always happened in any kind of meeting. What you have to do is to challenge yourself to make the presentation become more and more attractive. Many tips and tricks are available in magazine or online. Once you can attract the audiences, then they will wait for your next presentation.

5. Promise for good

The reason people pay attention to what you said in the presentation is because they believe that what you said is good. It must be the hard things to do since making people believe is not such easy task. Your words in the presentation are like promise to the audience. To assure the audiences can be learnt from your senior or internet.

The Registration Process Assistance for Singapore Company Incorporation

Any new Singapore company incorporation should follow the registration process before it can really start its business. The registration process itself isn’t designed to be so complex to hamper anyone from starting their own business, but still it may seem too complex for those who don’t have the experience to handle such documents before. By then, the assistance from the professional to handle the registration process will be such a help.

Documents Needed for Registration Process

The Singapore company incorporation must submit these criterias on their registration documents before running the business:

–       Company name

Check the availability of the names for your company as it can’t be too short and have the similarity to the existing companies in Singapore.

–       Business Activity

Define what your business is mainly running on. Classify it based on the list by Singapore Standard Industrial Classification Code (SSIC)

–       Company Shareholding

Define the shares for each shareholder and which percentage will be used on the shareholding.

–       Directors Details & Contact

Write down the detailed data and contact of the director, particularly to ensure the person is of fine financial standings and not undischarged bankrupt.

–       Shareholders Details & Contact

The legal owners of the business’ data should be kept along the record of company.

–       Registered Address

The office’s address to where all official mails should be sent.

The Registration Process

Preparing the documents is just a part of the pre-registration process for Singapore company incorporation. After this, you still need to take care of the legal registration process which will be tiring. However, you need not be worry about that as you can just ask for help from Koh Management, Company Incorporation Services. Here, Koh Management will help you to ensure that all legal documents for your company have been processed properly, such as: the documents which protect the shareholders and directors, paper documentations for any disputes, and all compliance requirements.

The registration services provided by Koh Management itself are embracing any kind of businesses from Incorporation of Local Business, Private Limited Company by shares, Limited Liability Partnership, and Sole Proprietorship. So whatever company you start, don’t be reluctant to contact its customer service representatives via phone in +65 62569663. You can schedule a meeting and discuss openly about the registration services packages which will be designed to be best-suited with your company’s budget and time frame. Sure, you will find that the services offered by Koh Management are beyond satisfying.

What Is Business Networking: It’s Importance and Success

Networking in business can mean two things.

One is, of course, the quantitative technical aspect of installing an efficient system of Local Area Network (LAN) in your office or a Wide Area Network (WAN) among your various branch offices. A systematic and technologically sound network has a very big role to play in creating streamlined processes, better management of data and user-friendly accessibility for employees in your business.

But in this article, we are going to talk about the top 5 advantages of the equally important qualitative aspect of networking in business – which includes networking with other business owners, customers, dealers and peers.

Especially for small and growing businesses, which do not have a marketing department or lots of money to spend on advertising, networking can be a key for expanding the business. For the CEO of a small business, investing in networking often serves as the biggest gateway to getting leads, referrals, new business and contacts. Let’s take a look at the top 5 advantages of networking in business:

1. You get a feel for the local business environment
Especially in the context of your own small business, it is vitally important to understand how the local market behaves, what are its key demand areas and its most effective price points keeping in mind the demographic and psycho-graphic profile of the area. Networking with other peers in your local business area and associations of local business owners and customers helps you get a clearer picture of the demand and supply graph of your local business area.

2. Keep updated with the current happenings in the local business environment
No business can grow in isolation. Networking with other business owners and associations helps you keep updated on the latest local business news, new regulations, incentives or tax reliefs offered by the local government to small businesses and the changing customer demands.

Besides, it is important to have updated knowledge of current business trends to be able to spot emerging business opportunities. You can accordingly fine tune your business plans and marketing strategies to make best use of the developments.

3. Gain qualified leads and referrals
It is said that, on average, 70% of all new business is gained through word of mouth and positive recommendation. Irrespective of how much money you invest in advertising or marketing, the best way to increase your business is by getting solid referrals or sales leads that come from known contacts.

Once you build a network of good, reliable contacts, you will find your contacts passing on business leads to you, which you will be able to close more quickly than those coming from advertising. People like to refer those whom they know, like and trust.

4. Get useful business tips and advice
A good network of contacts is like an investment in executive coaching. You will find that the best business advice and tips come to you from your contacts. People with whom you have built positive relationships would gladly pass on effective and honest advice to you.

Especially your peers or business owners who are in non-competing businesses are great sources of useful tips. One proven way of building a great network of contacts is to join a CEO club or CEO association where you can interact with experienced peers and business owners on the problems you are facing or the strategies you would like to apply.

Networking with peers in a CEO group or CEO club who will give you sound and honest advice is one of the best ways of receiving helpful business insights. Your contacts and peers may have experienced similar problems to yourself and can point you in the right direction.

Also, make it a regular exercise to attend relevant business seminars and conferences where you can establish a number of potential new contacts.

5. Unlock new business opportunities
Building a growing network of business associates, business contacts and peers is like opening yourself to a larger world of new ideas. You may be running a small business but that does not mean you should limit your ideas, vision and plans for your business within narrow confines.

As you meet with new business contacts, you will be amazed to find yourself being exposed to new business ideas, new market possibilities and new potential for expansion which you otherwise may not have thought of.

Business networking helps you in many other ways. It develops your communication skills and confidence in meeting with new people. Besides it also gives you unique opportunities of being of help to others, just as others have been to you. It may hold the key to your business’s expansion and success.

Genuine Advantages of Business Networking

We frequently hear about business social networking or office networking since it has now become an indispensable factor in our daily lives. So what are these all about? What are benefits or advantages of business networking? Why this has become a crucial factor in our daily lives?

So many questions are there about social or office networking but the important one is about its advantages. So the right question may be, what are the benefits that corporate networking can provide to a corporate individual.

Social networking is capable of providing an individual numerous benefits. It establishes a unique platform where commercial organizations and corporate individuals can exchange their views and opinions or even share their thoughts. Because of this, businessmen and commercial houses are spending huge amount of money every month on office networking.

Many corporate giants are hiring individuals having expertise in social or corporate networking. Some organizations are so passionate about their professional social networking activities that they decides to establish department dedicated especially for such activities. If you own an online business and you are looking for long term success, then it is time for you to take care of your social networking.

Nowadays it is extremely important for you to adopt a perfect business marketing strategy due to ever increasing competition. To eliminate the competition, business networking is the perfect strategy. Business networking will let your customer know about your business, your products and services and also about your terms and conditions.

You can do this in a number of ways but the quick and convenient option is a professional business networking. All you have to do is to write few interesting lines about your business and your very post will get distributed among your friends within couple of seconds.

Here the only thing that you have to consider is your social circle and you can do that by staying active in some of the well-known corporate networking portals. One thing you must bear in mind that if you are going to use your social networking site just for promoting your business then you better forget about it. Social Marketing is a powerful marketing tool that can help you reach millions of customers within a very short span of time.

Business networking is also cost effective and this unique advantage gives it an edge over rest of the business marketing strategies. Corporate networking allows you to use different types of marketing or promotional strategies. This is one of the most economical ways to promote your business.

Simply create a business account in any of the well-known office networking for free and place your information regarding corporate events, your products or services on everyday basis. Remember, social networking is now being preferred by millions of people. So you can be sure that your information will reach to them within short span of time.

Business networking is easy and you don’t have to be a tech expert to use corporate networking sites. The entire process is very simple and simple. You can do it on your own if the scale of your business is small.

Business Networking Myths

With the advent of social media and on-line referral generating systems, person-to-person business networking seems to be taking more of a back seat in many marketing plans. And when I look at some of the marketing strategies of new entrepreneurs, I’m surprised that expensive advertising is the primary tactic used to find prospects, and that networking sometimes isn’t even considered a viable option for generating new clients. I’ve been successfully sharing referrals with other business folk for many years now, so I hadn’t considered that the belief systems of some people about business networking could be so different from the reality. There seem to be a lot of myths out there, so let’s bust some of them right now.

Myth 1
Networking is selling.
False.

It is not selling. Selling is about attracting the person in front of you to your product or service. Networking is marketing. It’s about attracting the 200+ people the person in front of you knows to your product or service. Networking is wayyyyyy less stressful for those who are terrified of selling.

Myth 2
Networking is about going to business events and making sure everyone in the room receives your business card.
False.

It is about building relationships with other business folk who have a reciprocal mindset for sharing clients. When I see people desperately trying to work a room by giving everyone their business cards and scurrying off to the next person, here’s what I do. I make them my clients.

Myth 3
Networking is about spending valuable personal time attending events.
False.

It’s a way of life. You can easily build a profitable referral network without ever attending an event.

Myth 4
Networking is about delivering your elevator speech.
False.

Elevator speeches are for addressing an audience at an event. They do not work in day-to-day conversation, where networking is most effective.

Myth 5
Networking is a task that is completed when you walk out the door of an event.
False.

It is a marketing technique that becomes a way of life. When you develop the skills of networking, you can never become the old you again.

Myth 6
Networking is about joining a business referral group and having to work with people you may not like.
False.

There are advantages to joining a business referral group, but you can build a profitable referral network just as effectively without ever joining one.

Myth 7
Only extroverts can be successful at business networking.
False.

I’m an introvert myself. I do a few things differently at events to reduce my anxiety, such as taking frequent breaks to make notes and breathe, but I have found business networking quite manageable.

If your false beliefs about business networking have been holding you back from taking advantage of a referral-based marketing strategy, now is the time to give it a try and see for yourself how effective it can be.