Saturday, April 11, 2009

Who Do I Network With?

social-networkingOne issue social media users wrestle with frequently is whom to connect with? Is there a universal magic formula for success with this process and do certain types of people strengthen a person’s online experience? In my opinion not really! Since every person is unique and their interests and motivations varied it’s difficult to pinpoint one strategy or solution to this question.

Initially I thought it made the most sense to connect only with people in my business sector, the events industry. Quickly I realized my social media experience would be greatly enriched by expanding my horizons. Selecting a connection is more intuitive than structured. Here are four recommended practices, when applied sensibly, that may lead to better decisions regarding your connections.

  1. The Bio — When considering whether to follow/add someone as a connection read their Biography. You will gain insight into their areas of interest and networking focus. If you sense there may be synergy then connect. Personally, if a person does not post a Bio I don’t connect with them.
  2. Silence is Not Golden — Review the recent history of a potential connection’s communications. Connect with people who are consistent. There is no value in the relationship if there is no interaction!
  3. Profile Picture — A person’s profile picture can offer insight into their personality and networking motivation. It is difficult to connect with a person having no picture!
  4. Variety is Spice — much depth and balance will be added to your networking experience if you seek quality people with diverse backgrounds. Who knows.. that next great idea might come from a connection with someone distinctly different than you!

The value and spirit of social media is to enrich the lives of other people and yours in return. By connecting with people embracing that philosophy you will truly discover a whole new universe of collaboration. That is truly powerful!

Do you have an idea to share based upon your social networking experience… please post it!!

Thanks and have a terrific day!

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