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Six slick apps for the networking contractor

It’s often not what you know, but who you know – as reflected by the respective careers of the Geldof children – and the world of contracting is little different,  a burgeoning contact book a useful asset to have with growing numbers turning to self-employment.

To cultivate these contacts you’ll need to embrace a little networking, doing a little offline and online schmoozing in a slick and professional manner. No mean feat with the spectre of sweaty palms, awkward silences and ignored tweets looming large, unless you’re of The Apprentice ilk, networking can be a arduous and anxiety riddled process.

Don’t fret though, as with almost everything nowadays there’s an app for that. Here’s a collection that might make your networking that little more effective…

Weebly

In today’s internet obsessed world, your own website can prove a handy networking tool. Created well, it can help exude professionalism.

Now, if you’re a techy type then this app is probably redundant, however if HTML is your idea of hell, than the Weebly app is something that’s well worth checking out. With stellar reviews in the various app marketplaces, it provides a simple web design and blogging platform, at reasonable prices, too.

Tweetdeck

Essentially an add-on to Twitter, Tweetdeck provides a platform to make your Twitter use more effective, through filters, scheduled posts and other features.

It’s useful on the networking front as once you’ve assembled your schmoozing targets you can put them into Twitter ‘lists’, say from high to low priority, and view all the Twitter goings on in a columned, efficient format.  Basically, it’ll help you sort the Twitter wheat from the chaff.

Roamz

Part of the struggle of networking is actually finding other people to network with.

Here, the Roamz app can help, as trawling through social media networks it reveals popular places, as well as events happening around you. With the incessant nature of social media updating and networking events happening all over the place, you’ll find some Tom, Dick or Harry somewhere.

Bump

Something that might spare you from the ignominy of turning up to a networking event without your business cards, is the Android and iPhone compatible ‘Bump’.

Using this you can transfer anything traditionally contained on a business card via the mutual bump of a smartphone. Bear in mind your acquaintance will need to have the app too though, otherwise you might come across a little odd.

Cardcloud

Another digital alternative to the business card that’s useful if you’re forgetful or merely a heavy drinker, is the cardcloud app.

This allows you to track where you’ve met your potential new contacts, whilst offering the ability to share your digital business card with anyone you meet….provided they’ve got an Android or Apple gizmo.

Faceover

And finally, because everybody likes a joker (in small amounts) there’s Faceover.

A daft app, with this you can virtually swap faces with celebs or your fellow networkers, usually with hilarious consequences. It might stave off any awkward silences at least… or exacerbate them if it’s particularly unflattering. Best be careful with this one.

Mark James is a writer for online accountancy firm Crunch

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