Social networking is an online cocktail party: What impression are you making?

Businesses are jumping on the social media bandwagon as a tool for marketing, thought leadership and customer feedback. When networking online, it is helpful to refer to networking at a cocktail party.  Marketers who only talk about how great they are and lack a genuine interest in others, will soon find themselves uninvited to the party.

Read on to find out if your company is guilty of breaking the rules of social media etiquette.

The Party Crasher

The Party Crasher would enter a gathering and shout "BUY MY PRODUCT". Party Crashers speak more than they listen,  breaking the rules of human interaction without a moment’s thought.

Remedy: Converse, don’t lecture: The whole point of social media is that it breaks up the traditional one-way relationship between speaker and audience to facilitate conversations. The nice thing about conversations is that you get more timely feedback than you do with lectures.

The Wallflower

In Internet culture, a wallflower is called a “lurker”—a person who reads discussions and views photos, but rarely participates actively. Research indicates that lurkers make up over 90% of online groups.  Many companies begin and shortly abandon social media efforts, and a “dusty” blog or fan page leaves a poor impression of your brand.

Remedy: Get out there and do it!  You and your staff should dedicate a minimum of 15 minutes every day to maintain and build social and professional networks.

The Narcissist

Narcissism is egotism, vanity and conceit.  The narcissist would stand on the bar at the cocktail party and lecture the crowd nonstop about his company

Remedy: Always remember the WIFM principle (What’s In it For Me)  Provide valuable information to people with no expectation of something in return.