Over the last 4 years or so, I have made a solid effort to build a great network of people. The way I started doing that was everytime I met someone new, I would try to work the fact that I was a singer into the conversation.
That would either lead to just general interest, or something mutual beneficial for both of us. Bartering is a great technique to advance your network and gain things that may not have been afforded to you otherwise. Not everyone is sitting on a pile of money, as a singer/songwriter, most of us are struggling to make ends meat. And if you are struggling, many things to better your success are not easy to get a hold of. You need a website, music videos, properly mixed music, merchandise, and the list goes on.
Now, I am lucky enough to have bartered my first website and become genuine best friends with the designer. I have the ability to do voiceovers, she needed one for another website she does, I traded her the voiceover for a basic website. From their our friendship blossomed and she luckily provides an enormous assistance. Music, I reached out to many people to find the best product for the best buck. A technique I have found very useful for merchandise/apparel is find a sponsor who can benefit from placing ads on your items, they pay for the advertising space and you have stuff to hand out. My other network branches are very similiar stories which I personally am beyond lucky to have found. My best advice for building a network is be personable and sincere. You don’t have to be a genius to sense insincerity, if you are humble and kind, usually people are willing to help.
Attend events, post online, just spread word verbally like wildfire.