Meeting new people can be fun and effortless, but how do you get past the small talk to ensure new encounters convert to meaningful long-term relationships which both parties can benefit from? New connections are busy, with little time to spare for building new professional relationships. However, there are ways to make this relationship-building process easier, using the simple tips below. Let’s dive straight into it!

Follow Up Straight After the First Meeting

Sending a short message right after you have met the person will help solidify this first encounter in their memory. Remember that people are busy and meet a lot of enthusiastic professionals like you, so making sure they remember this first interaction is crucial to keep the relationship going. You can include a short summary of what you discussed at the event, or mention something you found interesting. Make sure your message includes the possibility of a follow-up. For example, let them know you will keep in touch and send over any relevant links when the time comes. This way, the next message will not come as a surprise or seem too pushy.

Keep in Touch (really!)

Keeping in touch is a loose term that is easier said than done. Keeping in touch is a process, whereby you should update your correspondent every few months and regularly try and meet up. A good way to ensure you keep in touch is to schedule your next follow-up as soon as the meeting is done, this way, it won’t slip your mind two months later. Remember, you don’t want to be too pushy, so even though it’s ok to occasionally send a funny or interesting article their way, make sure it doesn’t become a daily habit unless clearly requested.

Connect With Them on Social Media

Connecting on social media can be a great way for them to remember your name and hopefully keep seeing it while getting to know you better through the content you share. This can also be a good way to see what they are up to. In the event of a good news update such as a promotion or a new job, you have an opportunity to get back in touch to congratulate them or catch up. That being said, make sure you pick the right social media platform to connect, Linkedin is probably the go platform for professional connections, however, depending on how you clicked with the person Instagram/FacebookTwitter could also be a good option as it is much more informal.

Implementing these tips once you’ve made a new contact will greatly help you in maintaining the relationship. Once you make a habit out of maintaining relationships, it will start becoming natural and you will have a bulletproof system that works for you! Ultimately, remember that networking is about making connections with people with whom you have something in common. Be yourself, and make sure you are prepared!