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What is Business-to-Business Networking?

Gaynor Borade
A business relationship is similar to a personal one. Just like an individual, the business, too, has to, in the course of its life, establish mutually beneficial relationships with other like-minded people. In this story, we have presented a very effective and low-cost method for building business contacts.
Networking is a very important component of any business. It is a medium to extend goodwill, share information and technology, and also add to the profitability of the venture.
The business-to-business network or B2B is a strategy designed to meet the ever-increasing need to effectively route and apply fresh ideas among businesses. Recently, networking via meet-and-greet events has taken the whole exercise and outcome to the next level.

How is it Applied

The key to true business-to-business networking is the establishment of an understanding between two or more businesses, that are connected in some way or the other. The connectivity is established for both to benefit from the presence of the other.
The application goes beyond the standard shake-hands-and-exchange-your-business-card events, that are often wrongly considered as forums for networking opportunities. The B2B strategy is applied to the existent business network or a new one, in order to increase revenue.
It is essential to understand the interdependency of the market and industry prior to adopting the strategy. It operates through the development of relationships with existent and new clients, and learning new skills via exchange of business information, technology, and support.

Efficiency of B2B

The level of efficiency largely depends on the ability to listen patiently, and focus on how you relate to or co-ordinate with an individual or organization, in a way that the business profits. It is important that the interaction takes place within an exclusive space.
This ensures that all the resources involved are directed towards immediate and long-term gains, and favorable results for all the parties involved. It also relies on the size of the networking group and the quality of information being shared.

B2B and the Entrepreneur

Any business is like an offspring of the entrepreneur. It gives him the opportunity to tie up with resources outside the business, to thrive and survive the competition well.
It is initiated to complement the operations, that are common to the group, which eventually lead to the desired expansion. Networkers can capitalize on the experience by first and foremost, establishing connectivity with people or companies they would need for coexistence and growth.

The Networking Rostrum

Business networking is now professionally pursued with the dedicated services of 'networkers', who organize and facilitate easy accessibility and connectivity. When networking, time and effort is invested in helping each other.
The rostrum is shared by like-minded people and businesses with complementing or dependent operations. There are highly effective networkers that 'work the net' into the function, with a common goal in focus. It is designed to create a win-win situation and cultivate a rapport between participants.
It is absolutely fine to first establish what the whole exercise has to offer your business. You should listen to every segment of the 'net' and then build a relationship with one or more participants. Remember, it is always a two-way understanding.
You should be specific on referrals and reciprocate help whenever required. It is, but appropriate, that you make the most of the forum available, by participating in the network functions and being a part of the executive.