How to Network in a Virtual Environment — 6 Sites You Should Be Using

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Laura Berlinsky-Schine2.3k
May 28, 2024 at 8:2AM UTC

Once upon a time, if you wanted to network virtually, LinkedIn was pretty much THE choice. Now that we’ve pivoted into a working landscape where remote is mainstream, the networking options have expanded tenfold. Here are just some of the platforms you should be using if you want to build your professional community — entirely from the comfort of your couch.

1. LetsLunch

LetsLunch is an app where you can network with fellow professionals and set up coffee or lunch, either in-person or virtually. The app boasts nearly 100,000 successful lunches, helping like-minded people connect.

2. Women Business Collaborative

WBC is an “unprecedented” alliance of more than 60 organizations and hundreds of individuals. It seeks to encourage women to pool their talents and resources to achieve real progress in the workplace, advocating equal position, pay and power. Its strong commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion is evident throughout its many events and collaboration opportunities.

3. Shapr

You can think of Shapr as a dating app-like tool for professional connections. The model is similar to that of Tinder: you create a profile, swipe on potential matches (choosing “pass” or “meet”) and start chatting. Shapr calls itself the no. 1 networking mobile app, with 2.5 million users around the world. 

4. Meetup

As you probably know, Meetup is not exclusively for the world of work — it brings together individuals with common interests and hobbies, too. But there are still plenty of groups geared toward professionals in a range of areas, such as entrepreneurship and writing. You can join groups, participate in virtual and in-person events and even start your own groups. Now that there are plenty of online events, you no longer have to limit your search to groups in your area.

5. Slack

You probably think of Slack as an app for messaging your colleagues about work topics, and you’re not wrong. But the communication platform has expanded beyond this and now offers “Slack Groups,” communities for online networking. You can find Groups for freelancers, UX professionals, tech movers and shakers, leaders and much more.

6. Fairygodboss

We would be remiss if we didn’t include ourselves on this list! Fairygodboss is the largest online career community for women, and it's the perfect forum to create connections with fellow professionals. Ask for advice, participate in discussions, give and receive support and learn all about new opportunities in a single platform. Our community is growing every day, and we can’t wait for you to join.

We’re not saying you should delete your LinkedIn profile — far from it! But why limit yourself to the professional networking giant when there are so many other resources to help you connect with individuals with diverse talent and ambitions? Go on — start building your network.

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This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of Fairygodboss.

Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a freelance editor and writer based in Brooklyn with her demigod/lab-mix Hercules. She primarily focuses on education, technology and career development. She has worked with Penguin Random House, Fairygodboss, CollegeVine, BairesDev and many other publications and organizations. Her humor writing has appeared in the Weekly Humorist, Slackjaw, Little Old Lady Comedy, Flexx Magazine, Points in Case, Jane Austen's Wastebasket, and Greener Pastures. She also writes fiction and essays, which have appeared in publications including The Memoirist and The Avalon Literary Review. View her work and get in touch at: www.lauraberlinskyschine.com.

What’s your no. 1 piece of advice for networking virtually? Share your answer in the comments to help other Fairygodboss members!

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