You’ve finally built a relationship with a potential customer and are getting pretty chummy. Thinking a social media customer connection is a great next step you start in with… “Hey let’s connect” you say. “Great!, LinkedIn?” says the customer. “No, I was thinking Facebook.” you blurt out. Silence [cricket noise]. Things just got awkward. Why?
I was raised in a witty, cutting, aggressive dialogued environment and became a master of it in high school and college. With this background it would be easy to derail conversations for my own purpose. Regardless, I have consciously decided not to do so; one… out of manners and respect for the author, and two… for the possibility to learn something new. I would never lash out with a personal attack as I see that as a weak and small minded response. I wish that were true of others.
Somewhere along the way sales professionals thought they had found the infamous “silver bullet” for sales success. “If I just Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin I will have thousands of sales easily!” Question… when has marketing using email, faxing, or mailers ever worked that way? Isn’t social media the same? You’re return will always be fractions of a percent for the effort. Always has, always will be… and you know what? That’s o.k. So, Is social media a waste of time?
Phones, phone lines, internet, websites, social media and the list goes on. Who would have thought that this new marketing – communications direction would be a company’s newest and maybe even top concern?
So what’s working and what isn’t? Where do you put your time and money?
LinkedIn is a lot of different things to a lot of different users. Arguably the most powerful place to make connections with business owners, executives, decision makers, recruiters, job seekers and the like. With more than 300 million users, many of whom are executives and decision makers, it is a very powerful but congested venue for building relationships and credibility. So how do you get noticed on LinkedIn in this sea of possibility?
Two of my favorite subjects are technology and business. It was, of course, destiny that an article on this subject would transpire. The idea began with a keynote presentation that I gave to a room full of CFO’s and IT Directors. It just made sense to share with a larger audience.
The “great fear” of businesses globally is that their employees are going to commit them to unspeakable liabilities and ultimately “twitter” their business away. Could this really happen? If you ask any business attorney they will of course tell you absolutely or at the very least possibly. My question then is how is this any different than emails, text-messages, recorded conversations (especially in one-party states), voice-mails, letters, verbal conversations… etc.? While I’m not an attorney common sense would tell me that while each of these “technologies” have their differences they are all areas of possible worry and liability. So why the business paranoia on only the new social media venues?
As an earlier adopter and loyal (paying) LinkedIn fan I believe that in general LinkedIn has their act together. They have offered a wonderful venue for professional networking never before seen. I am extremely active with this tool and will continue to be so. With that said, however, there are a couple of penalty items that can cripple how you work with LinkedIn that for the life of me I can’t figure out why LinkedIn does them.