When I started my own business, I had even more time to network but decided to tackle this in a different way. I started to be more selective and I made a pact with myself that I would pick one person at the event that I wanted to meet and build a connection with. I would not go home until I approached that person. This really helped me to focus and meet amazing people who were interested in my ideas, my project and even to meet for coffee afterward to expand on my business strategies.
When the time came to accelerate my project and look for help in areas that I didn’t have knowledge or experience in, I started to look at my network again. Not the ‘traditional’ Google search. Through my networking efforts, I had in effect created a virtual team of freelance helpers who were excited to be part of my vision and shared my passion and drive, not to mention the fact that they were happy to charge a reduced rate in order to help me out.
The initial team that brought my brand from idea to launch was formed by Naty, who helped with graphic design all the way from Colombia and Mexico while she was travelling around the world. Then came Jakki, who I had virtually met at a digital marketing course run by Google. She helped with the content strategy, all the way from Bath in the UK. When I needed help with PR, I could only think of Orla, who worked with me during my first year in Ireland. Like that, when it was time to put together a video for the website and social media platforms, I contacted Greg and Stephen who I met at a start-up academy a year before the launch. And the official launch itself is planned at an incredible venue, The Marker Hotel in the heart of Dublin, again something made possible through my networking efforts. Networking through courses, events and travel helped me to bring Landa to where it is today, never underestimate the power of making simple human connections. Often without realising it, we have a virtual community of people who can guide you in the right direction. Networking will be something I will continue to do and encourage others who are thinking of making the leap into business for themselves.