When it comes to forging links with other businesses, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook need no introduction. But don’t overlook the host of other websites and apps designed to give your business networking a boost, from business-card scanners to social-media management tools.

Meetup.com

Theworld’s largest network of local groups. Simply input your details, state how far you’re willing to travel and the type of get-together you’re looking for and Meetup will find something to match; whether it's a speed-dating evening, a meditation session or a business networking or enterprise event.

www.meetup.com

Eventbrite

Another useful tool that links users to local events. However, the site’s real strength lies in its ability to help you organise and promote your own events. Use the Eventbrite organiser, a free box-office app, to sell tickets; check in your guests and scan their tickets using the Eventbrite app, or keep track of attendees on a customised dashboard.

www.eventbrite.co.uk

Periscope

Twitter’s live-streaming video app can be a useful tool for conferences and networking meet-ups. Periscope allows you to engage – via location tagging and your Twitter feed – with a wider audience and enables your attendees and followers to add their own comments and feedback.

www.periscope.tv

ScanBizCards

A smarter way to collect business cards, ScanBizCards allows you to upload someone’s contact details securely to the cloud. The app is capable of reading 23 languages and can be integrated with your calendars – so you can set reminders to follow up contacts – or CRM tools such as SalesForce.

More here

Nimble

This handy app describes itself as a “relationship manager and personal agenda tool”. Nimble builds a CRM database from your contacts, emails and calendar activities and then searches the web to provide social and company updates – invaluable for helping you read up on clients before a big meeting.

www.nimble.com

PROsimity

A search tool for selecting “the right professionals locally and at events”. PROsimity is based on the idea that a lot of time at networking meet-ups is wasted on small talk. It aims to connect you with the most relevant contacts in a given location. It’s basically like Tindr for businesses: if the person you’ve contacted agrees to connect, you can start a conversation through the app or swap business cards.

prosimity.com

Hootsuite

A comprehensive platform that enables you to manage your social networks – it connects with 35 different social channels – via a single, easy-to-use dashboard. You can schedule posts for future publishing and find out what customers and clients are saying about you, as well as see how your social posts are performing via Hootsuite’s analytics.

hootsuite.com

Attendify

This is a great (and green) alternative to printing a programme of your business events. Following a simple step-by-step process, you can build your own app for an event, or group of events, including a social activity stream and profiles of your guests sourced from social networks.

attendify.com