Jun 102012

Business Social Networking- LinkedinBusiness Social Networking: Build numbers or build relationships? You may have asked yourself after hearing all this stuff about connecting with your audience “How can I possibly create a relationship with all the friend requests?” Let’s get into a few strategies on how to do it timely and effectively.

Today it seems like everyone is concerned with acquiring one the many labels out there, which provide more and more false sense of accomplishment every day. There are the LinkedIn LIONs (Linked In Open Networker) with more than 500 1st generation connections, then the Twitter Gurus with tens of thousands of followers , and let’s not forget the Facebook Ninjas with their multiple thousands of “friends.”

Business Social Networking Guru'sDoes any of this really matter? Yes and No. Obviously you want a large audience and it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking all you need is more connections, but most of us sacrifice relationships for numbers. With all the marketing mediums changing everyday people DO NOT want to be sold to. Now think about the strategy of just building large numbers of connections, what are you going to do with them once you have them?

Your goal may be to add value, but you barley know anything about the audience so how can you possibly add value to thousands of people that you don’t even know?

The answer is: it is a massive hit or miss.

Quality over quantity. This is the difference between working smart or working hard. Obviously having a large number of contacts is great, you don’t want a small audience of only a bunch of people you know. “New blood” is the life-source any business, however time must be dedicated to interacting with select people you have deemed your “Hot Prospects.”

Business Social Networking Ninja!These are people you have personally looked into and have determined that developing a relationship could be mutually beneficial.

Ok, but what can I do to continue building a strong following, personalize select connections, and manage my time most effectively?

Here are 4 ideas to help you out:

1) Create Lists

You can create lists on each of the networks. (On LinkedIn they are called Tags) What is great about creating lists is it enables you to categorize your contacts. So instead of having just a big hodgepodge of people you have them organized into categories set to your specification so you can keep an eye on the key players you want to build a stronger relationship with.

2) Use Social Media Dashboards

Tweetdeck and Hootsuite are the first 2 that come to mind. There are quite a few out there here is a link to a great review site for many of others Click HERE. These help you organize multiple social networks in one place so you can organize your lists and communicate with everyone without having to log in to all the sites directly.

3) Talk to you new connections

No I did not use talk as a metaphor for email, dm, private message, or inmail. Actually use a phone for something other than taking pictures or going online and call someone! If getting away from your computer is too much of a stretch use Skype.

You will be amazed at someone’s willingness to talk with you. We are so accustomed to all of the digital forms of communication when someone we meet online asks to speak with us that it is a HUGE pattern interrupt and they almost can help but saying “Sure.”

Try to set just a few phone appointments with new connections a week and watch how your exposure, traffic, and credibility increase.

4) Exponentially expand your network

Two tools I enjoy are Toplinked and Tweetadder. It may seem like I am contradicting myself a little here, but I think having more friend requests to sort from empowers you to be a little more choosey when adding new contacts. Big numbers can really become more of an ego booster than an income generator if not utilized properly.

I would much rather sort through inbound connections than blindly search. At least these people potentially have some kind of interest in you. Although, every 2-3 weeks I do a personal search for some interesting people to start trying to connect with.

Pretty much what this all sums up to is plant the seeds now and reap the harvest later. I know kind of an obvious notion, but the success in using social networking for business stems from mastering the mundane.

Master the simple tasks over time and you will be astonished how your business’s social networks are going to begin spinning off income.

What is your favorite social networking tool?

  55 Responses to “LIONs, and Gurus, and Ninjas! Oh, My!”

  1. Joe-
    I absolutely agree that you need to plant the seeds now to reap the benefits later. I believe that you need to serve others before they want to serve you. Thanks for your post, I really enjoyed it. Great info!

  2. I am very thankful I came across with your blog because this is exactly the kind of information I am looking for. We all know the online business competition is very stiff and hence learning something new can be of big help for our business to create new tactics that will positively elevate its status. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Hi Joe,
    We love the title to your post! Very creative and it fits well with the excellent body of the post! (The pictures are perfect as well)

    You are right that quality relationships are worth so much more than a large quantity of people you don’t really connect with to create the relationship. You have four excellent suggestions on how to more easier create quality relationships with a larger quantity of followers.

    We like #1- Creating lists – to organize your list into several related smaller lists so you can connect better and do it in pieces to make it more valuable to your followers.

    Your suggestion #3 – Make a phone call – is excellent too. Who would think anymore that a phone call is still the best way to solidify your relationship and starting a practice of doing this with new connections is a great habit to form.

    Keep the value coming, Joe!
    Dave and Dawn

  4. Joe, your post title got my attention and I’m glad that it did. When I decided that I was going to use facebook to generate leads, I was told to get 5,000 asap. Well right around 2,000 and something, I decided that I had enough with adding people just for the sake of numbers. Call me crazy but I actually want to get to know the friends that I already have. Also, every once and awhile, I will pick up the phone and call my facebook contacts, only once did I have someone not want me to call them (why the heck did she put her phone # in her profile?!?) Anyway, most people appreciate that phone call.Thanks for this post.


  5. Without providing unconditional service we never truly be a resource.

    Thanks for sharing!


  6. Travis, thanks for all the comments! I am so glad you enjoyed the site. Your site is cool and unique, I look forward to submitting some stories in the near future. Thanks you again for stopping by.

    Have a great day!


  7. I think is and always has been a 400 pound piece of technology. It is a million times easier to sit here and email, text, and tweet all day, but when it comes to talking to people we freeze up.

    Thanks so much for the great comment. You are both awesome!!


  8. Thanks Golda! The phone is still one of our best tools and you are right if you dont want people to call dont put your number on the site. I am glad you and your business is going so well.

    I am looking forward to checking out your 20 tips! Thanks again.

    Have a wonderful evening!


  9. Hi Joe,

    I totally agree that quality is important and I love your tips here.

    My facebook set-up is quite complex with lists for all sorts of things but it was well worth setting up – there’s no way I could keep track of everyone otherwise, my memory is appalling!

    I find after talking to someone that things change so much – for the better. I love to video call via skype. I used to hate talking to people with a passion – I grew up with massive issues with phones, ridiculously, but it makes so much difference to relationships that I absolutely had to get on with it.

    Thank-you for these great tips… mastering the mundane is a must – in fact every aspect of our businesses is very important indeed and deserves our attention!

    Kind regards,

    Emma 🙂

  10. I strongly agree with the insight you imparted because they are the one that we should be exercising in our web business. Kinda typical it is, but it will surely boost your business. I am glad with your kindness of sharing this information. Thanks and Keep Going! 🙂

  11. No problem Rebecca, glad you enjoyed it!

  12. Thanks so much Emma! I am glad you stepped out of your comfort zone and learned the value of building relationships. Skype is awesome!!

    I appreciate you stopping by. Have a great day!


  13. Hi, I’m glad I found you site, great post!
    I totally agree with you about having a big number of followers can be an ego booster, more than a income generator.
    One of my favorite tools is Tweetdeck.
    Thanks for sharing your expertise!

  14. Joe,

    Awesome post.. I really enjoyed reading through this! Nice ideas and i will have to give both Toplinked and Tweetadder a try to add more followers!

  15. Tweetdeck is a great tool, I am debating going over to Hootsuite. What are your thoughts? I have been using tweetdeck for a while and have no problems with it, but hootsuite seems to have lots more features.

    I am glad you enjoyed the post. Have a great day!

  16. Great Justin! Thanks for stopping by.

    Those are affiliate links so if you are so inclined please feel free to check them out through there.

    They have both been a great tool to assist me in meeting some great people.

  17. Great post, Joe!
    Personally I love Twitter, but my new fave is DailyBooth. People do not see the benefits and possibilities yet but I do 🙂

  18. Thanks for sharing all of that Joe. I went to the link 22 Social Media Marketing Management Tools and that is terrific. I’m at a stage where I’m a bit guilty of collecting people so to speak and your post hit home with me. I’m also going to spend time researching the tools to save me time and focus on what’s really important relationships.


  19. Joe, I really enjoyed this informative post! And love your sense of humor!

    The most ironic thing I’ve encountered is people who have the goal of setting their business on auto-pilot and then forgetting about it. They don’t even recognize that “networking” and “socializing” actually means interacting, communicating, and speaking with those you want to connect with!

    Did they really come online expecting to use “social media” and keep to themselves? I enjoyed your list of tips very much.


  20. Hmmmm, interesting. I will have to check it out! You are awesome!

  21. Thanks Michael!!

    That was a great post, lots of great tool are out there.

  22. Hey Joe,
    I really enjoy your blog and this post. My favorite recommendation was to use a dashboard like Tweetdeck or Hootsuite. I have used both (currently using Hootsuite) and without these tools Twitter is unbearable for me. I find it difficult to track my key people and my clients using the main website and single news feed. And I find the ability to automate content syndication invaluable. I’m looking forward to learning more from you. Have a POWERFUL week, Allegra

  23. Yes. Joe you can fall into the trap in just wanting to draw traffic and get a huge connection campaign. Reality hits you then to question how much value is in that really….Building relationship is something I teach highly with my audience, childeren, husband, friends and family. No difference in internet marketing. We must understand how to nurture and cultivate and equip one another in all areas of life. I am truly blessed to say my God continues to give me awareness in building key genuine relationships. In all in all great Post. Look forward to see more of your super topics.


  24. I believe that social networking is very important for you and your business because social networking is one of the best ways to get recognized without and cost. Social networking is the best resource for you and your business.You can learn many things related your business and it’s market through social networking.

  25. Great post! my favorite networking tools are Facebook and Twitter. Thanks for sharing some great tips about networking. I am looking forward to reading more of your posts. Keep up the great work!

  26. Thanks Ruth! Totally true, whether online or offline the principles are all the same. Relationships are what sell, but more importantly what help us grow.

    I appreciate you!

  27. Joe….you make such a great point about lists. Lists help us put our time into the right places. As Deborah pointed out, networking is supposed to be about interacting with people. Lists actually help us do just that.

    To your continued success,

  28. Thanks LeeAnn! Glad you enjoyed it.

    Have an awesome day!

  29. Absolutely Robin, lists have saved more time than I an imagine between all the different networks. Thanks for your continued contribution. You and Judy are awesome!

  30. I think that you can’t emphasize #3 enough. People are always (pleasantly) shocked that you took the time and effort, and thus are more willing to take more time and effort for you.

  31. Great post,

    I totally agree. It is so easy to get carried away with numbers and forget that it all comes down to the quality of those connections. Building a huge list that you don’t know is kind of like living in a big city and not knowing anyone. Like you said, it’s great to have a big list, as long as you have some connection with them.

  32. Hi Joe,

    Lots of good points here. I like them all but especially the one on lists. I set up lists and it has been a great help.

  33. Hi Joe,

    Thanks for the article, it was a good read. I’ve recently started using lists on Facebook and Twitter and have found them valuable in networking.

    Also agree with the quality vs quanity. Quality wins everytime!

  34. Thanks Paul!

    The more we connect and cultivate a relationship the more we will be taken seriously. Value, value, value that is how any list can turn into an income.

    I appreciate you stopping by!

    Have a great weekend!


  35. I appreciate the comment Melodie. Glad it was useful.

    Have a great weekend!


  36. Both networks are awesome. Glad they are working out for you. If I can be of any assistance please let me know.

    Have a great day!


  37. Absolutely! Thanks for commenting.

    I hope all is well in Boston with your moving company. Have a great day and let me know if I can be of any assistance.

    Have a wonderful weekend!


  38. Thank you for the reminder of using “lists” with all of the social media sites. I did not know about creating lists on LinkedIn. I will have to take a look at that more closely. Great post Joe and I look forward to reading more.

  39. Hi Joe,

    Thanks so much for this post. The “numbers game” has been a pet peeve of mine for some time now so I very appreciate your post on this. By “numbers game” I’m referring to of course, the accumulation of numbers just for the sake of numbers. I can have a mere 1000 folks on a list that is far more responsive than an un-targeted list of 10,000. Thanks for helping spread the word.

  40. Hi Joe,

    Great tips. I know when I first got on Twitter years ago I thought it was great but as the people starting flocking to it I was taken aback a bit for a while. How to handle all that? Ugh! But once you learn to organize and simplify, it gets so much better, and I’m loving it.

    Social networking is a big boom to online business, at least in getting noticed and getting the word out. I just hooked up with a challenge that should be very interesting and a little difficult, I’m sure, but will be great experience in making connections that work well for your business. It’s called Customer Love and I wrote about it in my latest blog.

    You’ve given some great tips here. I’m sure people could easily improve their business social networking.

  41. No problem Juniper! I am glad you enjoyed it.

    In Linkedin when you click on contacts on the left you will see something called “tags” that is their version of lists.

    Have a great day!

  42. 100% on point Linnea!

    Thanks for sharing. Your Facebook fun posts sound interesting, I will check it out. Have a great day!


  43. Sounds like an interesting challenge. I will have to check it out and see if I can part take in it!

    Thanks so much for stopping by and for the awesome comment.

    Have a great holiday weekend!!


  44. It is always good to see someone say “quality over quantity”. The web has turned into a rat race to get the most lions, ninjas and gurus, as you call them. The numbers don’t mean anything unless you have a quality connection with them. I purposefully say connection, rather than relationship, because it is impossible to have a relationship with 10,000 people.
    I also like how you suggest ways to expand your following. You bring up great points that are guaranteed to bring success. Nice job!

  45. Thank you Karin. I was just trying make as good of points as you do on your site!

    You do a great job and I appreciate your comment. Have a great day!


  46. hello, I enjoyed your web page, and am very interested by the text that you showed us here, read it all because it has a very interesting concept, linking us to read, and its manner of expression is very strong, continue with your effort

  47. Loving it Joe. To many forget the relationship building step in the attraction marketing model. The people we are interacting with are real people like you and me who are living and breathing everyday, not a facebook page, or another profile on your list real people. We often forget that.

    The people who do remember that are the different ones. The ones people gravitate to. Because real people recognize real people.
    Looking forward to more value

    Be Blessed and Have Success
    Arthur Bernier Jr.

  48. Joe,

    Great post. Like so many other things in life it’s about balance… while having the numbers is great, it’s also very important to develop the relationships as well. We have found that creating lists has been a huge help in allowing us to connect with people who have certain interests… definitely a great strategy.

    ~ Pat and Lorna

  49. Hi Joe:

    Thanks for this post. As someone who is new to social media, this article puts things into perspective a little. I have connected with so many super cool people, and it seems a little overwhelming to keep up with everyone. It’s also intimidating to follow someone with thousands of followers when I have just a couple hundred. But I’ll just keep putting one foot in front of the other and keep connecting.

    Wishing you a song in your heart,

  50. Joe,

    Thanks for sharing. Your online tips really help others boost their business or turn things around, if things are getting stagnant.

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