These days we meet people from around the world without ever leaving the house. The connections that develop are important to growing your personal and business network... You may have heard the statement, "If you aren't online, you don't exist." Harsh though it may sound, in the 21st century, there is truth in this philosophy.
Just like in "real" life, when meeting someone online during the business of social networking, the first encounter sets the tone. If you are in business, then social networking is now part of doing business; recognizing this fact will help you set boundaries and find your voice or company identity. I am not talking about just growing your numbers, I am encouraging true, organic relationships that social networking can provide if approached with that intention.
The first step to achieving a new connection is getting yourself out there "meeting" people. We'll assume for this article's sake that you are at least utilizing Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Cultivating, then maintaining, any relationship takes finesse, energy, and interest... As we all know, in order to make a good connection, it starts with a good first impression.
Online connecting is often a quick click of button to "follow" someone, but many times there is direct interaction between parties. During an initial direct contact, one very SIMPLE TIP to making a good first impression is SPELLING the person's name correctly!!! Yes, that is my tip - obvious, but important - and it will make your online networking better, brighter, and easier. Think of my tip and place the same value on it as remembering and correctly pronouncing your client's name during a face to face meeting.
When you've taken the time to reach out to someone, or they reach out to you, make the effort to check and double check the spelling of their name (and their company name if applicable). If you don't, anything else you write becomes secondary because the recipient will immediately notice that their name is misspelled. This does not make you look good. Period.
Come on, admit it. You've been there. Me, too! I get a "Y" instead of an "I" a lot; easy with a name like "Luci," BUT bad form because my name is on everything I do online. This faux pas is simple to avoid since most people who social network for business use their names. More often than not, the correct information is right there in front of you! Paying attention to small details matter in a busy and fast-paced world.
We've all sent notes or responses with a typo - it happens - but there is no room for error when it comes to someone's name. Don't allow this EASY step to trip up the first impression you make! TIP: If you do make a mistake, go back and correct it. This will help demonstrate that the connection matters to you since you took the time to get it right.
Like this article? Please share it on your social networks... Have a tip or two to add? Comment below, network with me, join the conversation!