I was recently speaking with someone who was about to start her own business and was a little nervous about finding new clients. She asked me what sorts of business development activities I undertake. One of the most important that I mentioned was getting involved in my industry’s trade associations. Trade groups like the American Marketing Association, Public Relations Society of America, Urban Land Institute, etc. have been great ways for me to network with peers and prospective clients. This is true for every industry. According to the Center for Association Leadership, there are about 1.9 million trade associations in the United States, which means that everyone, no matter what their field, is represented in some form or fashion.