Do you network regularly? And intentionally?
If you do, the fascinating people you meet will inspire and energize you.
You’ll be exposed to new opportunities. You’ll make more money. You’ll discover the next awesome stage in your life. And you’ll make new friends.
If you don’t network regularly and intentionally, then you’ll stagnate.
You'll become rigid. Boring. And worst of all, these things will creep up on you. Before you know it, you’ll be in your own comfortable bubble. Cut off from exciting adventures outside that bubble, sitting home alone, eating another carton of ice cream, and with too many cats.
I love Shapr. It’s a networking app. Think Tinder meets LinkedIn.
You have a simple profile with your portrait, a bio, and your interests.
You can see 15 other profiles a day. You swipe left or right. If both people swipe right you’re connected. Then you can chat by text. Many often then connect by phone, video conference, or over coffee.
A fresh stream of water into your pond -- of energy and opportunities. It’s almost doubled Applied Ideals’s revenue.
In this article I’ll teach you what I’ve learned after 100+ hours of using the app and having conversations.
#1 - Networking is Good
You probably agree since you’ve read this far. But just in case: networking is only sleazy if you act sleazy.
What if the next person you meet is in your life for 30 years? What if they’ll be a new best friend or business partner? How would you want to remember your first interaction?
Have an open mind. See everyone as friends you haven't met yet. Look for ways to help. Look for ways you can learn and teach. Be open to surprises.
#2 - Create a “Curiosity Hook”
Everyone has something to sell. If not a product than a belief. That’s totally okay. So be intentional about it.
Invest time clarifying WHO you help and WHAT you help them do. This is your curiosity hook: “I help X do Y.” Make it short, snappy, and intriguing.
For example, Applied Ideals helps social entrepreneurs make more money and a bigger impact.
Then put this on in your bio section.
If they’re curious then you can tell HOW you help.
#3 - Swipe Everyone Right
Why not? In my experience, only a few will also swipe you right. Have as many conversations as you can!
#4 - Use Your Best Portrait
Use a tool like Photofeeler to select your most professional and friendly portrait.
#5 - Be Clear: Open to MLM Yes or No?
Some people on Shapr want to pitch you an MLM opportunity. Say if you are open to this or not on your bio.
#6 - Link to Something Valuable
Who do you most want to meet? Other yoga instructors, entrepreneurs, pastors, graduate students?
Create something (like this blog post) that gives them value. Post it on the web. Then link to it in your bio.
Giving people value is a beautiful way to start a relationship.
#7 - Use a Scheduling App
The point of Shapr is to have awesome conversations with new people. You want to move from chatting by text to something more rich. Like speaking by phone, video chat, or over coffee.
It’s such a headache going back and forth finding a time. Especially with time zones. So get a scheduling app and link to it.
I’ve been a happy customer of Acuity Scheduling for a year, and their customer support is highly responsive.
#8 - Link to your Scheduling App Carefully
Even though they are AWESOME time savers, not everyone is comfortable with them yet.
It was the same with voice mailboxes years ago.
So link to it after a few messages (not out of the gate). And make an just an option. Say something like:
“I have a tool that makes scheduling meetings across time zones easy. If you want to use it here it is: [link to your scheduling app] If not, what are a few times/days that work for you?”
#9 - Use a Clipboard Manager
You don’t want to be spammy, but you want to be efficient.
For example, instead of typing out the above message slowly (and the URL even more slowly) store it in your clipboard manager for easy access.
For Android, I like Native Clipboard Manager.