COVID-19 and Small Business Networking

How to Network Effectively as a One-Person Business

Written by Suzanne Elly

Starting your own small business is one of the boldest moves any young professional can make, especially now in this pandemic-addled world. But building or rebuilding post-COVID-19 isn’t impossible, and there are defined steps that you can take towards further establishing your business even now, and even if your office is your home study. Here’s all you’ll need to network effectively as a one-person business.

1. Be open to collaboration

First and foremost, you’ll want to make connections with other young professionals with similar goals and ambitions. They don’t necessarily need to be members of your industry either, or even have the same skill sets as you. In fact, if you’re able to make connections with other young professionals with specialised knowledge and skills, these relationships may become highly valuable on both ends. Web designers and marketing specialists can touch up your website, whilst lawyers can write up documents and help establish your LLC, and you can reciprocate by bringing your skills to the table too. The best way to find these connections is by moving from your home office and into a coworking space in Melbourne’s CBD

But these modern offices aren’t just valuable when it comes to making connections and inviting collaboration either! Coworking spaces can also be a fantastic way of keeping yourself motivated, providing your business with a legitimate sense of self and scale, and ensuring that you don’t feel alone on your entrepreneurial journey, all leading to greater chances of success.

2. Attend/participate in events

In order to establish your business as a genuine player in the game, you’ll need to ensure that your business plays a role in your wider community. This will undoubtedly mean different things to different types of small businesses. For instance, local restaurants and cafes can consider renting out a space at community fairs and other kinds of outdoor events, whilst independent agencies specialising in select services can make donations, run games, or organise small events that may make their presence felt.

Alongside general community involvement, it’s also a good idea to attend or participate in industry events too. Make sure that you’re always in the loop when it comes to upcoming trade shows and conferences, and be sure to nab tickets to in-demand events as early as possible. Melbourne is a fantastic city to be in when it comes to securing resources or platforms that your small business can utilise. Be sure to take full advantage of all the marvellous annual events that this city has to offer!

3. Maintain your online presence

Finally, it goes without saying that a small business with a consistent online presence is more likely to develop a large and loyal customer base. But establishing your online presence can’t be done without first thoroughly defining your brand and style and building the wider identity of your business. It’s better to be proactive about your marketing plan to avoid any little mistakes which may hurt the legitimacy of your business. Be sure to develop a tailored marketing plan which takes into account a few months of future business in advance, including special dates like holidays and relevant events.

It’s also a good rule of thumb to become well-acquainted with any industry hashtags which may also help boost your brand recognition online, build your follower base, and help you network with other local or even international enterprises.

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Making connections as a one-person business is all about ingraining your enterprise in the wider world, and in this regard, there’s no way you can’t benefit from any level of networking. It’s also worth noting that it’s important not to limit yourself during this process. Thinking realistically is a valuable skill, yes, but building your own small business is all about fulfilling dreams, and the best dreams always benefit from a little imagination. Don’t be afraid to aim high, and remember to enjoy the journey!

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About the author

Suzanne Elly

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