You worked hard to build your network. Don’t let that hard work go to waste. Maintaining your network is easier than you think.
Love it or hate it. Research shows that networking leads to more job and business opportunities.
But you don’t get these benefits by having a network that never hears from you.
Here are some organic ways to maintain your network without being awkward. And why it’s so important.
Why is it important to maintain network relationships?
Maintaining relationships with your network is important because building a network is only half the battle.
To see the benefits of networking, you’ll need to invest in those relationships.
Just as a home requires maintenance, so does your network.
The good news is — there are many organic things you can do to maintain your network relationships.
How often should you reach out to your network?
If you’re actively trying to build a relationship with someone, reach out at least once every quarter or every 3 months.
If your relationship is already established, connect at least twice per year or every 6 months.
At the end of the day, don’t force it. Maintaining your network should feel natural.
How to Maintain Your Network
1. Celebrate birthdays and holidays
Birthdays and holidays are great opportunities to connect with your network. Many people take time off during the holidays.
Meaning you’ll likely catch them at a good time. And who doesn’t love getting birthday wishes? Here’s what you can say.
I wanted to send a quick note wishing you a [enter holiday]! I see all the great things you’re doing. Keep up the good work. I’m here if you ever need anything.
2. Congratulate them on milestones
Show some love to your network when they achieve milestones like a promotion, marriage, or starting a business. It takes very little from you. And goes a long way. Here’s what you can say.
Congrats on [enter milestone]! I’m proud of you. Keep up the good work. Now go celebrate!
3. Turn on post notifications
Social media is a great way to keep up with people in your network.
Roughly two-thirds (67%) of social media users say that staying in touch with friends and family is the main reason they use social media.
If you’re on social media, turn on post notifications for the top people in your network.
Don’t do this for everyone as it can quickly get overwhelming.
This helps you maintain your network. Engage with their content. And gives you talking points for your next conversation.
4. Let them know you’re in town
Before your next trip, check to see who in your network lives in that city. Traveling can be a fun way to maintain your network. Here’s what you can say.
I’ll be in your city next month. Let me know if you’ll be around. It would be nice to catch up.
5. Share resources
Be generous with your network. Your kindness will come back to you when you least expect it. Find out what the people in your network are interested in. When you come across resources that could help your contacts. Pass them along.
I came across this [Enter Resource] and it made me think of you. Let me know what you think. Hope you enjoy it!
6. Make introductions
Making introductions is a thoughtful way to keep in touch professionally.
If you meet someone that could help one of your contacts. Offer to connect them. It’s being a great human. And helps build rapport with others.
Send a note first to make sure your contact is open to connecting with someone new. Here’s how it’s done.
I met someone recently that made me think of you. [Enter the reason for making the introduction]. I’m happy to connect you two if you’re up for it. Let me know.
7. Send life updates
You can even share personal updates like getting married or becoming a homeowner if you’re comfortable. Use your best judgment on which updates make sense for your network.
8. Get feedback
The next time you need a second opinion. Reach out to your connections. Getting feedback is an organic way to maintain your network. And it helps your professional development.
You can get feedback about projects, business ideas, or big decisions like going back to school. Here’s how it’s done.
Hi (Name), I hope you’re doing well! I’m working on [Enter what you’re doing ]. I’d love your thoughts on [Enter what you need help with].
Appreciate you taking the time to help me out.
9. Share an invite
Invite your contacts to go to events with you. When you register for an event. Ask yourself who else might be interested. Sharing invites with your network helps you stay in touch. Plus you’ll have someone to go with. Here’s how it’s done.
Hi (Name), I found this event and thought you might be interested. It’s [ Enter what the event is about].
Want to join me? Here’s the link to register: [Enter Link]
10. Pick up the phone
Today you have many ways to keep in touch. Don’t be afraid to go back to the basics and pick up the phone.
Setting up quick calls with your contacts is a simple way to keep the relationship alive. Here’s how it’s done.
Hi [Name], how are you? It’s been a while.
I’d love to set up a quick call when your schedule allows it. Let me know how that sounds and some times that work for you.
Maintaining your network doesn’t have to be forced. Hopefully, this gives you a starting point.
To get the perks of having a high-value network, you’ve gotta put in the work!
Our Networking Tracker makes it easy for you to keep in touch with your professional network.
You can download it at no cost from our Free Career Center.
Remember that building a quality network takes time so be patient with it. Happy networking!
Over To You
How are you maintaining your network? Head over to our comments section on social @netwerkmovement and let us know.
Share this with someone trying to maintain a network!