Today I've got a few tips for building your own #GirlSquad. I’m sure you’ve heard by now that having a mastermind or a community of biz besties is basically the key to untold riches. Or, at least, it’s the key to keeping your sanity whilst chasing after untold riches. Well, it’s pretty much true. The second one, that is. Having fellow girl bosses to support you, cheer you on, ask for advice, discuss things with and that will actually understand your in-jokes (I keep making online-biz-jokes with the wrong people #fail) is pretty special.
So, the thing is that you don’t get a #GirlSquad overnight. You have to build one organically, which takes time (everyone’s favourite thing, I know!). Sure, you can join any number of masterminds and private Facebook groups, but it’s still going to take time to find the people you really connect with. With everything being online, it’s a bit like testing out if you speak the same language.
With all this in mind, I’ve put together a list of my favourite ways that I have found amazing girl bosses online. Who knows, maybe the beginnings of your #GirlSquad is one short scroll away!
HOW TO FIND YOUR #GIRLSQUAD:
1. Hashtags on Instagram
This is a popular way to find clients, but it also works for finding biz besties. Search popular hashtags for your industry or complementary industries and check out the posts + people that come up. I have to say, I’d basically been ignoring fellow photographers and stylists. Not really on purpose, but just because I was so focused on connecting with my ideal clients. But it’s really nice to connect with people who get what your life is like and you can learn so much from each other. It might feel a little awkward at first, like you should be competing or something, but just set that aside and make a connection. Trust me, the rewards will be more than worth it. You can absolutely be friends with your ‘competitors’. Just check out the hashtag #CommunityOverCompetition on Instagram for confirmation!
2. Engage, engage, engage
Talk to people! Comment on other people's social media posts, ask your followers questions, reply to every comment you receive. When you’re just scrolling through your social media feeds and you see something that you have a reaction to, write a comment. Tell them what you like about their post, or what it made you think of, or a similar experience that you’ve had.
I never used to do this, probably just because I’m introverted and didn’t really feel the need to, but once I started, I realised you can really connect with people and have interesting conversations. And that’s how you build meaningful relationships.
3. Webinars - use that chat box!
This one was completely unexpected for me! I usually view webinars as a learning experience and I’m solely focused on absorbing the information and taking notes. Then, one time, I decided to participate in the chat. It felt a bit strange at first and it took awhile to really chat to anyone, but as we got into it, the conversations just starting flying! It was really difficult to absorb much of the info from the webinar, but I made a few great connections from it and I still chat to most of them fairly regularly on social media. The only thing I would say is to make sure that there will be a webinar replay because you may not retain much information when it’s live if you’re busy socialising!
4. Online courses
Most online courses now come with a community, whether it’s a private Facebook group, Slack community or membership site. Take advantage of this! Even if you don’t particularly need any help, jump in and see what everyone’s up to, what you can contribute to the group or if there’s anyone you can help out. You can make some very solid friendships through your shared experience of the course.
5. Social Media Challenges
Okay, I’m going to be honest: I don’t know much about Facebook or Twitter challenges, since I don’t really hang out on those platforms, but Instagram challenges are amazing for making connections fairly quickly. My two favourite ones have been The Gram Gang (which is now so much more than a challenge) and #TheImperfectBoss by @fireandwindco .
Much like webinars and online courses, you’re sharing an experience, which is what helps you connect easily and more quickly. And, of course, the more involved you are, the more potential for meaningful connections. Challenges will have an associated hashtag, so make sure you’re checking in on it regularly and actively participating in the conversations happening around it.
6. Friends of friends
Once you’ve started to make some good friendships, check out the people your new friends interact with. Chances are, you’ll get along well with them too (makes sense, right?)! The easiest way to do this is through shout outs, tags and comments on social media. When you start seeing someone pop up regularly, check out their profile. Do this often enough and you start to realise how small the world of online biz actually is and you’ll find your own little group of friends within it.
Here’s two more tips I have for building your very own #GirlSquad:
(a) Be intentional
Don’t discount people because they’re not your ideal client or they’re not the same age as you or they have a different business model. Set the intention to be open to finding friends in unexpected places. It won’t always work out, but you might be surprised by how many times it does!
(b) Show up for them before you expect them to show up for you
People are busy. And, thanks to social media, we have short attention spans. If you think you'd like to be biz besties with someone, find a way to show up for them. Here are a few ways to do this (without being creepy!):
- Shout them out on social media
- Remember to regularly check their social media accounts and comment on their posts
- Sign up for their email list
- Support them and cheer them on when they launch a new product or service
- Recommend them to their potential clients where appropriate
- Just generally check in with them and see how they are and how their business is going
All the things you would love for someone to do for you, basically! You get back what you put out.
Where have you found biz besties? Let me know in the comments!