It’s easy to denigrate all of your online business networking to LinkedIn, given the ubiquity and reach of the site, but it’s worthwhile remembering that there’s a wealth of localised networks available for business practitioners across the world that are highly useful for making a connection.
Today, I’m going into more detail about these networks (in particular networks local to my base in Vienna) – how they work, what they offer and the best ways to establish your presence on them respectively. I’ll be focusing on my own local
Xing is a professional social network similar to LinkedIn that is highly popular in German-speaking regions of Europe such as Austria, Switzerland and Germany itself. Xing allows users to build a profile and include details such as:
- ‘Wants’ (ambitions for the future)
In operation since 2003, Xing is an established business network and is a useful asset for any professional seeking to establish or further themselves in the European business community.
A service local to my native Vienna, b2bnetwork.at allows professionals in Vienna to network with one another and establish connections outside of the online sphere through events that are regularly listed on the site.
The site is ideal for small business owners who want to find out more about the other businesses in the city, as well as how they can offer their services and develop their base of customers.
A site founded in Vienna but used across Europe and beyond, Tupalo has ‘spots’ that users can review after visiting. These ‘spots’ range from restaurants and nightclubs to pharmacies and financial service providers.
Tupalo also allows users to create planners from the favourite ‘spots’ – this feature is useful for running errands and maintaining a schedule for the day.
In summary, it’s always worthwhile to search for localised business networks in your area before using global options – you may find a hidden gem that leads to your next big opportunity.
Nery Alaev is the current director of ESN Investments GmbH, which engages in acquisition and development of commercial and residential property in Germany and Austria.