The Simple Psychology of Online Business Networking

Ever notice how businesses just don’t seem to *get it* online?  Strange, when it is really so simple.  Certainly not rocket science.  Networking online is about being social.  Period.  Plain and simple.

Many will argue with that premise, and I guarantee you that they’re wrong.

Even if your primary purpose for existing online is for business reasons, you need to be social.  Trust me.  It works.  All that other stuff is dreck (yes, that’s the technical term, the other term is not suitable for a PG rated blog).

Think of it this way, if you held a happy hour soiree for your business prospects, clients and office staff, you’d better have plenty of good food, booze (and a non-alcho alternative), plus a lot of interesting conversations going on.  The guy who stops by, business cards in hand, wearing a used car salesman suit – well let’s just say – he’s not going to be the life of the party and it’s doubtful he’ll make your guest list for future events (unless he’s the boss’s nephew, in which case you assign your assistant the task of babysitting him at all future gatherings).

Of course, I’m not telling you anything you don’t know.

If you’re casting about for a role as the least successful networker online, by all means please adhere to the following:

  • Make no attempts to learn about the community in which you’ve established a profile, I mean why bother getting to know the neighborhood, you came to sell stuff!
  • Create an insular community of a few key minions influencers, best if you pay them, and interact only with them.
  • Follow no one.  Like even fewer.
  • Post about yourself, all of the time, at regular intervals, day in and day out, on and on, ad nauseum.
  • Post your location, at regular intervals, day in and day out, on and on, ad nauseum.
  • Alternatively, you can post quotes, every five minutes, 24/7.  Who doesn’t need a little inspiration?
  • Direct message any and every one who shows the slightest bit of interest in you, be sure to use a 100% canned message, those always work the best.
  • Share jokes so offensive that even Howard Stern would unfollow you.
  • Buy thousands of bot followers so you’ll look like you’re part of the community.
  • If you’re feeling really adventurous and special, hire yourself out as a guest speaker and give talks on The Successful Brand Online – Little Work, Great Reward.

Now, I’m not saying any ONE of these things is particularly bad in and of itself (although, I wouldn’t recommend them).  As a matter of fact, there are multitudes of businesses and “professionals” online doing exactly these things – and supposedly succeeding at it.

But if you want results, a true fan base, correlating sales or interest in your brand.  I’d suggest you think twice and try something a little more unique.  Be social.  The community (and I) will thank you!

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