The secret to a network that benefits all parties involved is a relatively simple one, yet our associates at Ares Direct have found that it’s often overlooked. It’s impressive to collect an extensive list of names and emails. Some of us even have hundreds of contacts on networking sites like LinkedIn. Yet these efforts won’t amount to much if regular conversation doesn’t happen between you and your fellow network members.

It doesn’t take significant time to keep your connections thriving, as our experts at Ares Direct point out. You can strengthen the bonds you’ve made with people and keep your relationships front of mind in less than 15 minutes each week.

The key is to leverage the information your social media feeds provide. If you’re like our Ares Direct professionals, you’re immersed in social – checking in is a natural part of your day. This week, try a slightly different strategy. While you’re online, seek out new developments in your contacts’ lives. If you notice that someone’s moving to a new city, send a quick note to see if they received a promotion or if they’re staying with the same firm.

If you happen to see that someone in your network, whether they’re in your organization or outside the industry, has had a recent achievement, mention it to them! This can spark meaningful conversation when you least expect it.

For more tips on boosting the effectiveness of your network, follow Ares Direct on Facebook.