If you’re looking to grow your network, get the attention of a recruiter or looking to land a new freelance client, it’s no surprise to you how hard it can be to standout in a crowded or competitive market.
Which is why I’m always excited to share with you the results from new experiments I run when it comes to networking, finding new jobs or landing new clients!
Today I'm excited to share with you a strategy you can use to create a stronger brand, grow your network and find the clients and work you desire in today’s market.
It's how I landed my first six-month contract for 2019 just two short weeks into the year!
Are you ready for it? It's... Bumble Bizz🐝.
Featured in The Financial Times, Vice, WWD, and The Verge, Bumble Bizz is a professional networking app where you can find people looking to grow their network and career.
It's a spin-off the Bumble dating app and it even has an IRL component as they host events across the US.
There is a wide range of people the app:
For starters, there are both men and women on the platform, and the people are experienced, senior, to entry-level or college students.
When you sign up for the app it lets you pick one of the following as what you're looking for when connecting with people:
investments and investors
part-time work or full-time work
mentee or mentors
There's something on the platform for just about everyone!
What To Include In Your Bumble Bizz Profile To Find The Right Connections
When signing up for Bumble Bizz, be ready to share the following:
Up to six unique photos of yourself completely separate from the dating platform if you're currently using that side of the app
A headline describing yourself in a few sentences
Ice breaker questions. Just like the dating side of the app, Bumble Bizz offers a few questions for you to answer to help get the conversations started
About you. There's another section where you can share more in-depth information on yourself and your career objectives
Work. Here's where you'll share your resume and experience
Education. This is where you share your credentials
Best Practices To Consider When Using Bumble Bizz To Grow Your Network, Find a Job, Or Land Clients
Just like dating, have a general idea of what you want before jumping on the app. Before filling out your profile on Bumble Bizz, it can be helpful to consider exactly what you're looking to get out of the platform.
Be direct. I literally made my job title a shout out to the fact that I was looking to land clients in a certain field who need a certain service.
Communicate clearly. Before you hit send, re-read your message out loud to yourself. It can be exciting to get someone you're looking to network with to respond to a message, but typos can happen, auto-corrects occur, and you want to make sure you're communicating clearly typo-free.
"Bee" aware of what version of Bumble you're on. Bumble offers dating, friend finding, and networking options. All three allow you to create unique profiles so that you can share what you're looking for in networking, friends or a partner. I see SO many men and women who forget to check which version of Bumble they're on and let's just say their profiles can be spicy!😂🔥
Keep in mind, you don't need a Bumble dating profile for Bumble Bizz to work.
Be sure to log in to the app regularly. If not once a day, every few days make it a point to log into Bumble Bizz, Linkedin, or the other networking tools you currently have active profiles on so that messages don't go unanswered.
If you're not using the app, delete it.
Build two-way relationships. If you're looking for more of a mentee partnership, don't forget to consider how you can build relationships that aren't so one-sided. Don't go into the conversation with the sole intention of figuring out what you can get out of that person and how their knowledge, skillsets, or network can benefit you.
Don’t expect everyone to be excited to work on your project for free or for a partnership. Time is valuable and we all have ideas. Don't spend most of your time networking trying to figure out how to get people to work with you for free.
A Few Final Notes On Networking, Whether You're Meeting New Connections Online or Offline
Don't feel pressured to give out your phone number. As woman actively networking with a wide range of professionals of different backgrounds and ages, I have always avoided giving out my phone number in professional settings.
a) Give out your email
b) Collect their information
c) Call people via Skype or Google Hangouts
Use a call or Google Hangout session to vet people out before meeting them in person. Whether you meet online or at an event, sometimes it can be hard to vet someone out or their intentions. I like to use calls or video chats to get a better feel for the person and what they're looking for. Regardless, I want to hang and network with people I like, so I want to make sure we vibe before driving 45 minutes to meet up.
Add calls and networking events to your calendar. Don't miss out on that business meeting or call you worked so hard to land. When you make plans to meet with new people that you're networking with, add it to your calendar.
Offer to send them an invite too with meeting details. I like to list out who's calling who, their phone number, meeting notes or an address with the meeting location.
Be nice. Be cool. Be yourself. Most importantly, don't forget to be nice! We've all had experiences networking where people weren't friendly, or were braggy or just odd. Don't be that person.
Putting yourself out there is hard, be sure to put your best self forward and to be open-minded when networking.
As always, if you like this advice, I share my best tips on negotiating your salary, finding a job you love, growing your network and working remotely in my Workforce Survival Guide for only $10.
Have you used Bumble Bizz or another networking app in the past? Share your experiences below.