How to Network Remotely: 5 Tips for Genuine Connections

By Katie Schultz on June 25, 2024 in Candidates, Job Search


You shut your laptop. Another day of remote work done, but something’s missing. Maybe it’s that buzz of office chatter, the chance encounter over the coffee pot, or the spark of a new connection made at a conference happy hour.

While bustling offices and in-person conferences are still thriving, remote work has carved out a significant space in our professional lives. For many, the challenge lies in building meaningful connections when you’re not physically present. How do you network effectively when your office is your living room?

The good news is remote work hasn’t killed networking—it’s expanded it. The key is knowing how to leverage the digital tools at your disposal. While your time and budget might limit you to a handful of in-person events each year, the virtual world is boundless. You could attend a thought-provoking webinar on Monday, join an industry panel discussion on Wednesday, and participate in a global networking event on Friday—all without leaving your desk.

Whether you’re fully remote, hybrid, or simply looking to expand your professional reach beyond geographical boundaries, the five strategies we outline in this blog will help you build a robust network in our increasingly digital world.

Leverage Social Media Platforms: Your Digital Business Card

Social media isn’t just for sharing vacation photos anymore. It’s become the new business card, elevator pitch, and networking event rolled into one.

LinkedIn remains the gold standard for professional networking. Your profile is your digital first impression, so make it count. Craft a compelling headline, highlight your achievements, and use a professional photo. But don’t stop there—engage with your connections’ content, join industry discussions, and share your own insights.

Though not as popular for networking, Reddit, Discord, and Quora can also be goldmines for industry chatter and quick connections. Facebook groups often host niche professional communities as well. And don’t overlook platforms specific to your field—GitHub for developers, Behance for designers, or ResearchGate for academics are great places to meet likeminded professionals.

Pro tip for all platforms: Follow the 80/20 rule. Spend 80% of your time adding value to your network and 20% promoting yourself.

Attend Virtual Events and Webinars: Expanding Your Horizons

While in-person conferences have made a comeback, virtual events are here to stay. They offer unparalleled access to global insights and connections, often at a fraction of the cost of physical attendance. Your key to success? Active participation—don’t just be a silent observer.

Before the virtual event, research speakers and attendees, and prepare questions in advance. If possible, optimize your profile on the event platform with a professional photo and concise bio.

Engage in the chat, ask thoughtful questions, and follow up with speakers and fellow attendees after the event. You might even use social media to live-tweet interesting points using the event hashtag, increasing your visibility. Take advantage of networking features like one-on-one video chats or virtual lounges to connect with industry peers.

After the event, promptly follow up on LinkedIn with those you connected with, mentioning specific points from your interaction to stand out.

Join Online Communities and Groups: Find Your Tribe

Online communities are the new water coolers of the professional world. They’re where ideas are born, collaborations start, and opportunities knock.

WhatsApp groups, Reddit communities, and professional forums allow you to connect with like-minded workers across the globe. The best part is you can find a community for almost any niche.

The key is to be genuine. Don’t join just to promote yourself. Share your knowledge, ask questions, offer help. Be the colleague everyone wishes they had!

Schedule Virtual Coffee Chats: Personal Connections in a Digital World

Nothing beats a face-to-face conversation, even if it’s through a screen. Virtual coffee chats allow you to build deeper, one-on-one connections with colleagues, mentors, or potential collaborators.

Here’s how to nail it:

  • Reach out politely, explaining why you’d love to chat.
  • Come prepared with questions and talking points.
  • Keep it short—15-30 minutes is perfect.
  • Follow up with a thank-you note and stay in touch.

Virtual coffee chats are a simple yet effective way to create and nurture professional relationships in a remote setting, offering a more personal touch that can lead to valuable connections and opportunities.

Utilize Networking Tools and Apps: Tech-Powered Connections

Networking apps like Shapr, Lunchclub, and Bumble Bizz are revolutionizing how professionals connect. These platforms use AI algorithms to match you with like-minded individuals based on your interests, goals, and career aspirations.

Lunchclub, for instance, arranges one-on-one video meetings with professionals in your field or adjacent industries. It learns from your feedback, continuously refining its matches. Shapr operates more like a professional dating app, allowing you to swipe on potential connections. Bumble Bizz, an extension of the popular dating app, focuses on career networking and mentorship.

These apps can be particularly valuable for remote workers looking to expand their local network or connect with professionals in new locations. They break down geographical barriers, allowing you to forge connections you might never have made otherwise.

Bridging the Digital and Physical Worlds

The most successful networkers in today’s world are those who can seamlessly navigate both digital and physical spaces, building a diverse and robust professional network. Attend local industry meetups, professional association events, or coworking space gatherings to complement your digital networking efforts.

Remember, networking is ultimately about building relationships, adding value to the lives of others in your field, and growing together. Whether you’re shaking hands in a conference hall or exchanging ideas in a virtual chatroom, the principles remain the same: be genuine, be helpful, and be engaged.

So, what are you waiting for? Your next big opportunity could be just a click, swipe, or conversation away. Get out there and make it happen!

Ready to level up your networking game? Connect with us at KORE1 for more insider tips and tricks. We’re in the business of connecting talent with opportunity, and we’d love to have you in our network.