Netiquette is the acceptable behavior within a social marketing (Web 2.0) or social networking atmosphere. Failure to recognize these unspoken rules could mean little or no marketing results, or even worse, a disastrous effect on your image.
It is actually quite common for people to misuse social networks, and thus, receive no real benefit from them. In fact, more than anything among professional social networks people naturally have the wrong idea, and the few that do know what they are doing are experiencing great results.
What is the common problem? The problem is that marketers view these sites only as a means of advertising and sponsoring people into their businesses. Don’t get me wrong though, if used properly these sites will increase your businesses and income, but with a much stronger foundation.
First let’s go over what not to do through social marketing. As a side note, social marketing can mean any Web 2.0 social book-marking, content sharing, or social networking site. You should not blatantly shove your product or opportunity. Instead, try offering as much value as you can to others and attract them to yourself. You are misusing the site if you are simply becoming friends with people in order to send them advertisements for your product or opportunit without tyring to establish a relationship first. In most cases it is also true that these users will not be responsive at all to your message and will just block or report you. However, once you have built a relationship with your contacts it is ok to send them an announcement of your product or opportunity along with an informative message on how it will help them. You should limit how often you do this, do not promote your stuff to them every day. Instead, bring them value 90% of the time and 10% promoting yourself or business. You will find that you are attracting more and more people to you instead of chasing people.
Another pitfall that some people fall into is conflicting with others within the social network. You should know the difference between casual discussion and aggressive attacking. If you have a different view than someone else it is ok to voice your opinion but make sure to use facts and keep a constructive atmosphere.
Now let’s discuss some tips on what you should try to do while using social networking sites.
1) You should build relationships
This one is obvious, but still needs to be mentioned because of its huge importance. People buy from people they like and trust. If that is you they will buy from you. Introduce yourself to other users, but spend more time asking and talking about them than yourself. Find out what their goals are and what you can do to help them achieve them. Sometimes ones of the best, and easiest, ways to show value to your contacts within the community is by teaching them how to use the site by showing them certain features or customization options. You also need to keep a regular communication with your friends; this can be done on a mass scale through bulletins or by bulk e-mailing your friends. The communications should be value based and mostly informational, this will increase the likelihood of their interest in what you have to offer.
2) Help connect people to others
One thing you can do that will earn you major points with others is by introducing people to each other. You can do this through recommending friends who have similar interests. If your friends are involved in the same opportunity or sell the same product connect them so they can share with each other. If one of your friends sells something and another friend is looking to buy it, then that is a simple connection you can make. Now your friends will want to help you and the favor will be returned.
3) Evaluate your perspective
Are you constantly thinking about what others can do for you? Instead consider what you can do to help them. If your goal is to help others first you will build solid relationships and receive phenomenal results in your business. Ask others how you can possibly help them and they will see you as a valued friend.
4) Upload a photo and build a quality profile
Profiles with photos receive up to 70% more exposure. This shows the importance of adding a photo to your profile. If you do not have a photo of yourself you can put a photo of anything, the important thing is that you have a photo uploaded on your account. You also need to take the time to build a quality profile. First, write briefly about yourself, provide some marketing tips or advice, and then feel free to write about the value that you can provide to others. Every friend within the community will at least see your profile once, and your profile will get even more views from non-friends and possibly even non-members also.
5) Add and accept unlimited friends
Finally, your goal within the social network is to connect with as many people as possible. The more people you are friends with then the more exposure you can potentially have to your products or opportunities. Most social networks allow you to bulk contact your friends. You will use this feature in order to send helpful tips as well as promotions to all of your friends at once. This is why building up your friends list is even more valuable. If you are adding a lot of friends it is likely you will not be able to personally get in touch with all of them, in this case it is wise to show them your value and professionalism through your bulk communications to all of your friends so they can learn about you and the value you provide.
Social networks offer you the ability to get exposure but so much more. A huge benefit to social-networking is learning from others and being in an environment of shared knowledge. Take advantage of everything social networks have to offer and take the time to build quality relationships. I still work with other network marketers I met online over six years ago and these relationships have become highly valuable! In final words: Networking is a contact sport.