Social networking is the process of making connections and building a network, one person at a time. You make a connection with one person and you are then exposed to all their connections and so on and so on. Social networking has been practiced for centuries but the development of the internet has enabled social networking to explode with possibilities. With sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and many more, we can connect with people all over the world!
Along with the benefits of social networking come responsibilities. There are accepted rules and actions necessary for effective social networking. These rules and actions will define your conduct. Your conduct will be the deciding factor as to whether or not your social networking skills will be successful.
1. DO build relationships – Building relationships is the foundation of a successful business. Get to know your clients and let them get to know you. Form a bond based on trust and respect. Be sincere and genuinely show interest in helping your clients find the solution they are seeking. Gone are the days of pushy salesmen and intimidation tactics.
2. DO participate and get involved – Setting up your social pages and sitting back to wait for connections will not suffice. Answer questions, ask questions, comment on people’s posts, retweet, and really interact. You have to take the time to participate in conversations, take an interest in people’s opinions, get involved with events, and commit to putting in the time needed to bond with your connections.
3. DO share helpful resources – Always be looking for helpful information and resources to share with your friends and followers. Be as helpful as you can. Let people know they can rely on you for help and information and they will come to rely on you AND your business for more.
3. DO be honest – Always be upfront with people and do not offer them solutions you cannot deliver. If you cannot provide what they need, direct them to someone who can. This will strengthen their trust in you plus expand your networking circle.
4. DO update frequently – Visit your social sites daily and keep your posts new and fresh. But do not post so much that people start to ignore you or delete you. There is no set rule on posting frequency. All cases and sites are different but try to post at least 1-3 times per day.
5. DO complete your profile – If your profile is left undone or incomplete it will do certain damage to your social networking. An incomplete profile appears unprofessional. People will think you are trying to hide something. The trust will be significantly diminished. People will more likely connect with you if you provide complete profile information.
6. DO NOT lose control – You must, at all times, retain your composure and not let your emotions rule your behavior. If someone loses control, keep calm and reply with respect and courtesy but do not let them intimidate you. Be strong yet well-mannered. In most cases you will be able to “bring down” the person and they will have a stronger opinion of you. Of course, there are some people that just will not adhere to common courtesy and you just have to eliminate them from your network.
7. DO NOT get too personal – If you are networking for your business, people do not want to hear how you cleaned your toilet or what movie you are watching, etc. Be professional and post only helpful, interesting items. Adding a little humor is effective as well but be very cautious not to post anything inappropriate or offensive. People have different levels of humor and sensitivity so keep the humor light and acceptable.
8. DO NOT connect with everyone – Anytime you get a friend request or follow be sure to check out the person. Do not just connect with everyone so you can have a larger network. Learn to be cautious and how to decipher legitimate requests from hackers and spammers. This brings us back to the completed profile. I never connect with anyone who has no information at all in their profile. If they do not want to share who they are, that is a big red flag. Also be sure to verify any links, downloads, photos, attachments, etc.
9. DO NOT share too much information – People do not need to know when you are going on vacation or when you are home alone, etc. Be cautious and use common sense. Building your business does not require you to share your privacy and vulnerabilities.
10. DO NOT post without proofreading – Be sure to check your spelling, grammar, etc. Even posts that you feel has nothing to do with business need to be properly written because everything you do in the social networking world will affect your business. Maintain professionalism, courtesy and respect no matter how trivial you feel your post or response!
Without social networking, more than likely your business will not survive. Take advantage of the power and possibilities the internet provides. But always be aware, cautious and courteous when connecting, posting and building those ever important relationships!
About the Author:
Don’t be one of the 95% of people who fail at their online business. Terri Seymour can help you make money online. Find out how to increase your traffic and sales with her popular “How to Build Your Online Business” ebook for FREE at: ==> http://www.SeymourProducts.com
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