I just got an email from a guy I know. He’s selling a course that he created along with some really cool software. The software is made by another friend of mine. Guess what? I introduced the two of them about a year ago. Now, they’ve combined forces and are making money, and not paying me one red cent! Am I okay with this? Heck yeah! I make it a practice to put people in my networks and my spheres of influence together without worrying about getting paid for my efforts. You see, I’ve learned over the years that there really is such a thing as marketing karma. The more I give, the more I get.
I was at the gym the other day. Good thing, too! I run an online business, actually two of them, and I spend way too much time in front of a computer. Someone asked me today what I do for a living. The short answer is that I’m a writer. The long answer is that I’m a professional internet marketer. I create information products for various fields of internet marketing that show people how to build businesses and make money online. For real! Yep, I know that might be pretty hard to swallow, that this sort of thing is a real business. But it is, and I’ve been doing it successfully for over five years now.
When I’m at the gym, I get bored. Occupational hazard, that is the inability for my brain to be still. When you’re surrounded by social media and the internet all day long, it’s difficult to unplug. So, to amuse myself, and also to make sure that I do my half hour or more of aerobics every day, I have access to a lot of interesting books on my Kindle app on my iPhone. The other day, for instance, I was reading James Altucher’s book, The Choose Yourself Guide To Wealth
. This isn’t your normal, run of the mill how to make money book. There’s a ton of insight and real wisdom in between those digital covers.
One thing that James talks about is networking in the 21st Century. James has what he calls the new rules of networking. You see, the old rules make us ask “How can I get ahead?” The new rules compel us to ask “How can I help others get ahead?” At first I thought this was going to be one of those touchy-feeling things. Borderline victim stuff. Remember the old book by Robert Ringer, “Looking Out For #1”? The opposite of that. Sort of like global warming and occupy Wall Street meet business ethics. I had read James’s previous book, which is entitled just “Choose Yourself”, and I knew that there would be much more depth that just socioeconomic self hate. I didn’t know, however, that Altucher would go on to describe networking in the exact way that I had been very successfully doing it for the past few years online.
Altucher suggests three ways you can successfully network. They are 1) Introducing people to others who can provide value for them. 2) Introduce people to ideas without any expectation of receiving something back. And 3) finding a meaningful connection between you and the other person. As I said, I’ve been doing these exact three things for the past few years, and they flat out work. Let’s break this down step by step.
Actually, in my mind, the third item, finding a meaningful connection between you and the other person, is the bedrock of this whole thing. I’m a firm believer in putting the relationship first and the benefit that I might (or might not) get out of the relationship a far second. A solid relationship between you and anyone else, wife, child, business associate, depends on finding meaningful connections. If you’ll do that one thing, you will start to receive huge benefits back from your networking. Benefits which may or may not come from the person you’ve connected with. Sometimes they do. Many times there’s no real connection. It’s just the Universe rewarding you.
If you can find meaningful connections between you and a lot of other people, you have the makings of a huge and powerful network. What do you do next? Well, items 1 and 2 in the list above. Specifically, you can connect people to people and/or people to ideas. Both are powerful! Both will reward you in ways you can’t begin to imagine. (Beyond just sitting around and feeling really good about yourself.)
There’s only one caveat to all of this. Don’t look for the benefit to come back to you from the people you helped! If you do, you’ll break the magic. I don’t know how this work, but believe me it does work. You reap what you sow, but, to continue the metaphor, often from an entirely different field of crops.