Unemployment reached an all time high in 2020 due to the government response to COVID-19. States shut down their economies. They determined which businesses were “essential” or “non-essential.” They limited the number of customers who could be served at any given moment by those businesses that did stay open. COVID-19 is very real, and people have died. But there is no getting around the fact that lots of people lost their jobs, and poverty is very real, too. If you are among those who lost your job, what can you do to survive? The key is networking.
Your Network Includes Friends, Family, and Coworkers
Even the most introverted among us tend to have at least a few people in their networks. You don’t need thousands of connections to practice good networking skills. Start with what you have, and over time, work on growing your reach. Think back to who you went to school with when you were younger. If you weren’t total enemies, then it might be worth connecting on Facebook or LinkedIn. Go through your lists of people you worked with in the past, and connect with them too. And, connect with your family. Start engaging them in conversation and strengthen that bond before you start asking for stuff.
Put Up a Website
Websites are cheap. You can buy a domain name for ten bucks, and pay just a few dollars a month for a web hosting account. If you plan on selling products, then do some research on what’s trending in 2021. Don’t invest a lot of money in products; just work on your network, for now. As you start to flesh out your network, you’ll begin to see patterns in your connections. Look for commonalities in their family lives, their work, and their habits. Take a genuine interest in what your network posts to Facebook. What’s important to them? Figure that out, and you’ll figure out what products and services would bring them joy.
Sell, But Don’t Over-sell
It’s okay to pitch your wares to your network. People who like and trust you will want to help you out. But, don’t overdo it. As a general rule, you shouldn’t post more than one promotion for every twenty personal posts you make to your network. Bring them value before you ask for stuff, and you’ll make it easier for them to say yes.
Learn How to Sell
If you don’t have sales experience, don’t worry. There is plenty of information on the internet. Some of it’s free, and you can get the basics. If you have a few bucks, it might also be worth investing in a good sales training program. You’ll get access to those tips that aren’t easily found in the Youtube video of the day.
Nothing worthwhile happens overnight. Stay positive, and be patient. If you are dedicated to your new craft, you’ll find success. Just get started, and work on developing good habits. Spend an hour every morning reaching out to new connections. Spend another hour producing content on social media and on your website that brings people value. And, do a little soft selling while you learn the ropes. You may just find freedom from the daily grind that was once “normal.”