In this series of blog posts we are covering just that. We have earlier talked about how important it is to brand your name and yourself using social media. And when doing that, you need to master Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or what ever social sites you are using. To really be successful on these sites you must be aware of the special behavior that makes you successful there. Yes, there is a special code or etiquette used among the guru users there.
Why do we use those social web sites? To build a substantial networks as a base for our business. Networks have always been important in business as we have mentioned before. The good news is that it is easier than ever to build them with the help of free access to social media on Internet. It isn’t though, just to sign up with Twitter, Facebook and the other social sites and you will automatically get a lot of followers and friends. You must be aware of the rules. The easiest trick is to attract people, I mean you earn your followers or friends. We at Forsgrens decided to learn that and we have had a tremendous success.
To describe the social media code in detail, would make this blog post as long as an entire e-book on the subject so we will just cover the big picture here an then cover examples of good and bad social behavior in coming posts.
First we will list some good advice about things to do:
- Be open, give away a lot of information about your self. Your background, profession, interests and similar information. In Facebook and LinkedIn you can give away a lot of information in your bio or profile. Do that! In Twitter you have 260 characters to present your bio. You can let your Twitter bio contain a link to your about.me splash page.
- Your first contact with your new follower or friend is very important. Just be positive and friendly. Tell them how great it is to get to know them. That’s all!
- Always respond to your followers and friends when you see them around. Especially if they respond to your activities. Retweet, like, comment and share what they do if you think it is good. This is good social behavior and you do it to earn their friendship It always pays back.
- Always when you interact with your followers and friends, make sure you deliver value. Your tweets and posts must contain valuable content. A great tip, some news, a joke or some other funny stuff. The valuable content can be a text, an audio or a video. The best content is something that solve a common problem or is helpful in some other way.
- Always help your friends first before you ask for a favor from them.
Then we will list some good advice about things not to do:
- Never ask for a favor or offer a business opportunity in your first contact with a new friend. Even offering a freebie can be seen as a business proposal and shouldn’t be brought up in your first contact. People who seriously build a new friendship don’t do that.
- The best way to ruin a friendship is to comment your friends post and include a business proposal, an offer or a link to yourself. If a link is included it has to be relevant to the post and add value and not promoting you.
- Never share other peoples content without telling about the source. Your source is the one who posted it when you noticed it. If you share a post write a little text in which you tag the one who posted it. The tag is a link back to that person.
- If you are building a business network, never post about politics, religion and sex. You can post jokes about politics, religion and sex, if they are not rude and fairly clean.
- Stay away from negative posts.
I now have a feeling that you think, all this is obvious and basic rules, everyone is aware of this. Why even bring it up? I wish you where right feeling that. The reality is far from that perfect. Some time ago I checked out 1,000 direct messages I received on Twitter as response to following them. Their very first contact with me. Just over 70% was about a favor. Like my fan page, check out my web site/blog or sign up to this awesome opportunity or validate your Twitter account here. Less then 20% says a nice Thank you for following if you are on Facebook or LinkedIn, I would like us to be friends there as well. This latest response suggest something of mutual interest and reflects good social media etiquette.
Successful use of social media networks for business is called social media marketing. If you do everything right, according to what I describe here, people will find you interesting and are attracted to you. It is called attraction marketing too. They want to follow you or be your friend, so they check you out. They look at your profile, where you have links to your web sites. Since they want to know more about you, they follow these links. This create web traffic to your web sites. Many Twitter followers retweet your stuff if they like it and even more people get interested in your profile, and follow your links to your websites. Most of the traffic to Forsgrens websites is generated by social activities. We have thousands of unique visitors to our websites a day. Then keep in mind that if you do it wrong in your first contact with a new friend, there will be no traffic at all.