Social Networking is Meeting not Marketing

Teresa Boardman is a real estate broker in St. Paul, Minn., and founder of the St. Paul Real Estate blog says it best when she wrote about “Meeting Versus Marketing Online“.

Her view is that Social networking sites are about meeting people and making connections as people are more likely to do business with people they know.

She uses the example of going to a party and meeting someone who just happens to need your product or service. “Using social networks on the Internet works the same way except it can be done in pajamas instead of a little black dress.”

handshake

Blogs work the same way. Are they effective for marketing your services. Yes as long as you do not market your services.  Blogging is about attracting and meeting people.

I use my blog to publish articles on a wide range of marketing, casting a wide net across the internet.  It attracts a lot of readers and every week I get a phone call or email from someone wanting to know more about my services. Invariably they have read many of my posts, seen my picture on the blog and they trust me before they have ever met me.  Whenever I meet someone and think they are a prospect I always send them to my blog before I even phone them as it is my silent salesman.

A couple of parting thoughts.

Always have your 15 second elevator pitch ready and use it whenever you can. People don’t necessarily know what you do and what kind of referral you would like to receive.

Always ask people you meet if they might need your services or do they know anyone who might.

When Twittering, blogging. Linkedin (ing) or Facebooking whenever someone interacts with you socially, interact back.  You never know where it might lead to.

People buy from people they like.

Yesterday, from my blog I received an email from a law office that went like this; “I am interested in talking with you regarding client events, client appreciation and client referrals, creating stationary on the email, writing bio and writing and getting press releases and writing articles for magazines.” Knowing the area code I could see from my stats this person read 16 of my posts before emailing me.

Sorry for going on so long, but I think Teresa is 100% correct that social networking is about meeting not marketing and if you simply meet a lot of people, tell them what you do, ask them for their business and referrals, your business will thrive.

I have to add one last gem I live by.  Whatever marketing you do today will pay off in 90 days so if you are not busy today then it is a reflection of what you were doing in August and September.

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