Social networking helps people stay in touch and establish new relationships. Facebook, Twitter and Myspace, however, have moved beyond the personal world. Social networking in the corporate world is gaining popularity. Yet, business web interactions have specifics and etiquette of their own.
Social networking for business is regulated by strict rules. Naturally, you cannot upload party pictures or semi-nudes from the beach. Just imagine the reactions of your business partners and clients upon the discovery of such photographs.
Business interactions follow a certain etiquette, whether they take place in the online or offline world. These are the rules you need to follow when using social networks for corporate purposes.
Keep It Strictly Professional
You may have to create two separate social networking profiles – a professional and a personal one. You can also use filters to adjust your security settings but mixing your life with your business duties could be difficult.
Your corporate profiles have to focus on your know-how, your business, the services and products you are offering.
Personal remarks or a family picture are acceptable, as long as these are aesthetically-pleasing and presenting a side of you that business associates would like to see. Still, party photos, vacation photos and inappropriate jokes need to be kept out.
Choose Content Carefully
Social networks are created to enable people in their information sharing attempts. You can certainly use your corporate profile to share links and web content with people in your network.
Social networking in the corporate world permits the exchange of information. When sharing links, choose the ones that emphasize your know-how and that shed more light on your sphere of expertise. A social networking strategy may be needed to produce the best results.
Each piece of content you are sharing has to speak of professionalism. Choose content to share very carefully. Avoid clichés and stay away from something that will look amateurish.
Discover the Proper Groups to Join
Each social network has hundreds of groups – some based on hobbies, other based on professional affiliation. Joining the right groups will help your professional image and will help you establish new contacts.
Social networks have search boxes that are exceptionally easy to use. You will discover groups and individuals that share interests similar to yours.
Once you join professional, niche groups, you will have to start participating actively. A simple rule of social networking is that you have to stand out of the crowd, if you want to be noticed. Make competent remarks and comments. Contribute to business discussions. Build your social networking reputation and let people know and understand what you do.
Use Social Networking for Marketing Purposes
The main advantage of social networking in the corporate world is that it can be used to promote companies, products and services.
Effective social networking for business focuses on clever and delicate promotion. The links you share, the people you become friends with and the comments you make can all be used as a form of social media marketing.
The biggest advantage of social network marketing is that it can be executed for free, while remaining exceptionally effective. Images, links and videos added to a profile, as well as participation in groups are all great business promotion tools.
Social networking in the corporate world is simple, as long as you know how to behave, who to befriend and what type of information to share. Be careful and refrain from mixing your personal and professional worlds. A corporate profile has to be used solely for business purposes.
Source: The author's experience in the sphere of web etiquette and professional online interactions
Image Source: freedigitalphotos.net, Author: photostock