When asked “Is social media the best way to network your business in today’s world?” Jenny discusses her thoughts.
Social media is both the best and the worst thing to have happened to the world of networking. On one hand you have access to so many people in all kinds of fields and in all geographical locations, which is amazing. However, on the other hand the sheer volume of opportunities can be super overwhelming and I’m not sure the connections you make online can ever be as strong as the connections you make in a face to face scenario.
For example, a few years ago I joined a business mastermind group. It was online and had a worldwide reach but most of the members were UK based. This was during the pandemic so meeting up regularly in person with a mastermind group wouldn’t have been possible anyway so, an online group was my only option. I had lots of zoom chats with various people, and lots of interaction on Instagram and Facebook for the first six months.
Although I had these people in my network and they said they would support me with a number of business objectives if needed (and vice versa of course), I’m not sure if push came to shove we would have properly helped each other out and I believe this is because you can’t really know someone via a digital relationship.
Half way through this mastermind we had the opportunity to go on a trip to Europe together. The official trip was cancelled at short notice (due to Covid of course), but a few people from the group who I had had very little communication with were still very keen to do something instead.
So I travelled to Ibiza to stay in a villa with a bunch of people I had never met (and one who I actually found a bit intimidating). Fast forward a year and a half, and I’m still connected to these people. Not only are they part of my professional network, but they are friends who I can be honest with, whether business is booming or a bit tough.
In my opinion, that is exactly what you need in business – people in your corner to pick you up or cheer you on when you need it. Even with the best of intentions your non business friends don’t always get it. While I think social media is amazing for actually opening up the world to so many new people and ideas, I believe there is no substitute for offline, face to face networking to forge meaningful and lasting relationships within your network to help you flourish in business.
What have been your experiences of social media marketing for business?
Leave me a comment below…
About The Author
Jenny Drew is the founder and franchisor of Sew Confident, the UK’s only sewing tuition franchise which celebrated its 10th year in business this year. Sew Confident teach people of all ages and skill levels to sew, knit and crochet in their vibrant studios. Jenny runs the Glasgow Sew Confident Franchise with two other franchise partners in Dundee, Scotland and Chorley, England. De-stressing, connection and sustainability are at the heart of Sew Confident and more than 10,000 people across the UK have joined their close-knit community so far.