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Friday, July 24, 2009

Social Networking: Twitter? Facebook? MySpace?

The answer to the question you see might be this:

"All of the above."

Let's presume you have chosen which of the myriad social networking sites suits you and you have carefully and thoughtfully filled out their profile fields. Maybe you have even made some posts and have acquired a following of fans.

As an internet marketer, have you used the power of social networking to your advantage?

The way to make social networking advantageous in your business is to be generous. Give your social networking contacts something of value. Give of YOURSELF. Take the time to build healthy relationships.

For example, you aren't likely to enter a wedding reception and propose marriage to the first single person with whom you dance. It works the same way on social networking sites.

What is more insulting than to "follow" or "friend" someone whose website you admire and have them "follow back" or "friend" you with a SALES PITCH to buy their product? We do business with those we like and those we trust. If you haven't built a relationship you don't know who you can trust and you have not learned to like anyone BEFORE a relationship is established!

Before you write on someone's "wall" you must remember to be prudent, practical and cautious. Be your best self.

A good way to build relationships online-or offline-is to ask questions. What do people need help doing? How can you add value to their experience? Noted internet marketer, John DiLemme is a respected social networker and he advises people who want to be successful in the social networking arena to be generous and give away mountains of information. Help others to solve their problems. Find answers to the questions others have.

John DiLemme wants to see people build trust in their relationships. Isn't that what everybody deserves?

The number of friends or followers on a social networking site is important for your exposure. But it's even more important to understand WHO those people are, in terms of your niche market. It's just fine to comment to a parrot enthusiast but if your niche is targeted to boaters or sportswear shops, that may not mesh when at some point you advertise your newest Big Thing.

There is no need to blow your horn about your Big Project or Best Product every time you log in to your favorite site. The ratio should be about 80% to 20%. No need to frighten people away. We are all fearful of "being sold."

Are you new to social networking? If you peruse your Twitter stream or look at the pages of Facebook or any of the many sites that are available you will soon see how the process works.

One of my Twitter devotees has managed to develop a handsome income from her Twitter stream, simply because she has developed her followers' confidence and when she suggests something, they know they can trust her recommendation. IF they are in the market for the idea she puts forth, they feel comfortable to follow her lead.

The relationship she has with her "fan club" did not materialize overnight. She has consistently and regularly shown up to offer value, share helpful information, solve peoples' problems and prove that she deserves unfailing trust.

She got that trust the old fashioned way. She EARNED it.

Connie Baum
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