Networking online and in person are the same animal, living in a different cage. Not to get into which one is wild and which is tame, but they both share the fundamentals of fostering relationships and facilitating communication.
The thing about networking online is that if you don’t make yourself stand out and say just the right things, you might never experience someone politely telling you they are not interested. Online people have the option of just ignoring you.
With networking online there is a certain etiquette. If not followed, the chances of you scoring the deal, or even making a friend are slim. Not that it doesn’t help to think outside the box, but annoying people isn’t the best way to get on their good side.
While people online are the same as people offline, we must remember that certain things just wouldn’t fly in either case. Here is a list of things to AVOID doing while trying to be successful at networking.
13 Not So Great Networking Rules
1. You Win, The End. Keep your end goal in mind, and consider nothing else. Don’t worry about who you step over, or step on, in order to reach your destination.
2. Take Your Time, and Theirs. Assume that the person has all the time in the world, especially to dedicate to you. You know your time is more important than theirs anyway.
3. The Real You, Should Be Saved For You. No reason to let them know what you’re really up to. Try asking for just a moment of their time, and bombarding them with everything from the sun to the moon.
4. Take N’ Take. If you’re too busy giving, you won’t be able to accumulate and horde the good stuff for yourself. Take as much of their time and resources as you can before you move on to the bigger better thing.
5. Kiss Their Butt. If a person is of higher power, money, fame, or authority than do what you can to grovel and beg for their attention. People love being put up on a pedestal.
6. Snarl At Them. If a person is clearly beneath you in social status, than make it clear to them that you know this and are ready to have them polish your shoes while they fetch your coffee. People love being talked down to.
7. Do Not Leave The House. Sure you could put yourself out there, meet people, and make friends. There is a lot of risk of rejection involved in that. It’s safer to just stay home and watch T.V.
8. Do Not ASK For What You Want. Do they even know who you are? They should be lined up at your door, just knowing what you want, and offering it to you!
9. Be Cautious, Not Adventurous. It’s pretty hard to succeed, so often times it’s better to just lower your standards, and be happy you’re still breathing!
10. Myspace is Yourspace. All those drunken pics of you… yes even the one of your vomiting on new years should definitely be the first thing people see when they google your name. At least they’ll know that you know how to party.
11. People Are Generic, Treat Them Accordingly. Instead of wasting time trying to find out what each persons wants and needs are, make a template of how you will respond to everyone and stick to it. Sounds like it’ll save lots of time!
12. Trying Hard Is For Wimps. You shouldn’t over exert yourself. If anything takes much more effort than sitting around watching youtube than it’s probably not worth your time.
13. Share Your Vision? I think not! If you tell everyone your goals and dreams, and what you want to accomplish out of the mutual relationship than chances are they’ll either put you down, or even worse, steal your idea!
Ways To Abuse Networking Tools
1. E-mail, Elephant-mail. Short e-mails? No way! This is your opportunity to get everything you want, so keep your e-mails at a minimum of 10,000 words.
2. Comments The Right Way. Commenting on someone’s blog is the perfect opportunity to promote your product, site, or brand. So comment long, and comment often. Use as many links as possible.
3. Trackbacks. It’s good to communicate with other bloggers. So if there’s ever something you don’t like about them, make sure you write about it, and trackback so they are made aware!
4. Twitter Terror. We all know twitter is very popular, and once we’ve accumulated enough followers, we can safely begin to spam them with self-indulging junk.
5. Skype, Cell, Blab. Got someone’s skype or phone number? Great! Call them EARLY in the morning or LATE at night. When you’ve woken them up from their slumber, chew your food loudly, and talk about things of no particular importance.
6. In Person Events. Travel all around the world, meeting people that you want something from. Dress as if you were going to a slumber party, and style your hair accordingly. Forget social etiquette, that’s so 90s.
7. Other tools to abuse. There are a multitude of social networking, instant messengers, and communities out there. By now you should have a good idea of what NOT to do on them as well.
As a little proof of how NOT doing these DO NOT DOs has propelled me in my networking success, come see how I got over 30 A-List Bloggers, including Jay White from Dumb Little Man, to participate in my Happiness Project.