I am NOT a social media guru, but there are some things I just don’t agree with about social media that some REAL social media gurus (whoever they are) state are monumental faux pas. Maybe you agree, maybe you don’t. But since I am NOT a guru, please feel free to opine as you see fit. Maybe some gurus will chime in. I’ll put the no-nos in all caps below (which is something the gurus say not to do).
1. NEVER ACCEPT AN INVITATION ON LINKEDIN FROM SOMEONE YOU DON’T KNOW. Frankly, this seems completely counterintuitive to me, sort of like walking into a networking event and NOT responding to any introductions from people you don’t know. Isn’t the whole point of this social media stuff to meet new people, form new relationships, and connect? You never know who that person knows and why they might want to connect with you. Thoughts?
2. NEVER SOLICIT BUSINESS FROM A CONNECTION VIA TWITTER, LINKEDIN, FACEBOOK, ETC. THESE ARE ONLY TOOLS FOR BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS. Hang on a second! I have almost the same gripe about this one as I have with number 1. What is the point of connecting with all these people and bots if you can’t at least explore the possibility of adding some kind of value? Now, some of you are probably saying, “I hate being spammed by the ‘click here to learn how to make $2.5M tomorrow by giving away teeth whitening kits’ guy five times a day!” I say, you are correct. So do I. However, that is not to what I am referring. I shall always endorse an honest, well-thought-out, personalized and concise attempt to inquire about adding value to another firm, the firms clients, similar prospects, etc. The key here is ADDING VALUE! Furthermore, I would bet most are not connecting with their 500+ “connections” much at all anyway. Get out there and create some WIN-WINs.
3. BUSINESS IS BUSINESS AND PERSONAL IS PERSONAL. AND NEVER THE TWAIN SHALL MEET. YOU SHOULD NEVER MIX THE TWO ON SOCIAL MEDIA. So, wouldn’t you rather know you are dealing with a human than dealing with a bot like I mentioned above (I wonder how many people caught that one!)? You may not care to see my eight-year-old son’s latest doodle, but doesn’t knowing I care about it somehow personalize the business logo? I guess I have learned it cannot ever be all business; I’ve let my sense of humor genuinely bleed into my business life, and it has done wonders for my business and my health. Recently, I read about a wing eating contest held at one of my LinkedIn connection’s headquarters. He tweeted this and tweeted a picture of the winner. How great is that!?!? This showed me a lot about him and the kind of company he runs. And that I would have won the contest had I been in it!. Let me know you fly fish, you laugh, you build sand castles, you play in a band. It’s easier to do business with real people. I’d love to know your thought on these, or if you want to add a few more. When you’re done, go personalize a message to ONE of your connections and attempt to add some real value without trying to sell. See what happens.