In Part I of this two-part article series, I shared five keys to increase your networking success online using Social Networking. To quickly summarize, they were:
1. Personalize Your Invitations to Connect
2. You’ve Got to Give In Order to Get
3. Think Quality, Not Quantity
4. Be Authentic
5. Open the Door and Let Them In
Now there are tons of additional keys that we could talk about, however here are five more great ones that if you apply them diligently, only good things will happen.
6. Know Your “Why”
There’s that dreaded question again… you know… the one you know you need to ask yourself but you often hate to… what’s your “why”… What’s your “why” or your reason for social networking in the first place? And what results are you seeking for your efforts? Knowing your “why” is not only critical for your success in Social Networking, but for any marketing activity you engage in.
7. Wherever You Choose To Play, Play Hard
As much as you may like to, you just can’t market yourself effectively on every Social Networking site out there… there are just too many them. I’m not saying not to have a profile in a bunch of them… I’m all for free marketing.
What I am saying is choose a select few to play hard in. These should be the ones that strategically give you the best chance at connecting with your target market. Go deeper than just creating a profile. Use these to connect with others regularly and build strong relationships… the kind of relationships that may eventually bear fruit.
8. The Power Is In the Follow Up
Just like in the offline world, it’s not enough to meet someone once, exchange business cards, and do nothing. If your objective was to do nothing, why waste your time, and theirs, in the first place… time is money. Have a plan for follow-up! Know “who” you’re going to follow-up with… by “when”. And know “how” you’re going to follow-up with them… and “why”.
As you mine your contacts deeper by continually following-up, the real gold starts to surface. Remember it’s not only who they are that counts, but who they know as well. And people generally are more likely to introduce you to their network once they know, like, and trust you… so continue nurturing those relationships and watch new doorways open!
9. Be a Connector
Want to improve the quality of both your current and future contacts? Then make it a primary objective to continually find ways to add value to them. The Law of Attraction tends to kick in here as like attracts like. The more value you give, the more value you get as others tend to flock to and mirror those they respect and appreciate. The best way to add value to relationships, help others get what they want.
Regardless of what it is they want, just about anything is possible through relationships. So who do you know that may add value to someone else you know? Connect them and they’ll both be grateful that you were thinking of them.
And because of the “Law of Reciprocity”… as author Robert Cialdini shares in his great book “Influence”… those now happy contacts quite possibly will feel a sense of obligation to reciprocate and help you back.
10. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For What You Want
It’s this simple… you don’t ask… you don’t get. In my observations, people are generally very willing to help others… they’re just not sure how they can… so tell them how… give them a little nudging. Be willing to ask for help and get others in the habit of helping you.
No one should be above asking for help once in a while. Just don’t become a “taker”… you know… someone who’s apparently only concerned with their own well-being.
So in closing, Social Networking can be a tremendously valuable marketing strategy for both you and your business. I highly recommend that if you haven’t already, make the effort to test the waters a bit and see whether or not it makes sense for you. But remember, you’re likely to get out of it what you put into it, so if you’re going to play here, play hard.
In order to really benefit from Social Networking or any type of networking activity for that matter, continually work at establishing mutually meaningful and lucrative relationships.