I used to always be afraid of networking. I thought I was very bad at it even. It turns out that networking is nothing more than making new friends.
Connecting to people, finding common interests, figuring out how you can help each other along...
Personal relationships are always the key to good business.
You can buy networking; you can't buy friendships.
So, as you are reaching out to prospective clients, as you are making connections to people on LinkedIn (or wherever else) remember that you are making personal connections. You are meeting people, not dollars.
Make time in your schedule to interact with people on LinkedIn
Respond to their stories and questions, share their requests... Just a few minutes every couple of days can make all the difference.
You are a person too, so don't be afraid to show your personality
People want to connect to other people, not to corporate robots.When creating your messages, posts and articles write in your own style. Add a joke here or there, be as personable and funky as you are in real life.