The Good News: Social Network Marketing
When you think about it the social network marketing phenomenon is really a better environment for networking than any of the previous mediums ever used. Whether Internet Marketing or Network Marketing, the time has come for new strategy.
When ‘networking’ was first mentioned, it was in the context of a network of people whom you might interact with at work, at church, at home (through family) and in the neighborhood. It was said these were the best places to get to know people who might at some point be instrumental in helping you to find new prospects – jobs, business opportunities, etc. This was the first social network marketing — live and in person.
The real meaning of networking in this respect is to ‘know and be known without having an agenda’. This is an important point. What it wasn’t supposed to mean was blatant self-promotion. In fact you were advised to be cautious about proposing anything until the right time so as not to be gauche. (Gauche = Merriam Webster: “lacking social experience or grace; not tactful; crude.”)
Somewhere along the way the concept degenerated into people called ‘network marketers’ buying lists of names and phone numbers. They called you up to introduce themselves and pretend to be concerned about your situation in order to sell you something. This is just a little step above telemarketers who take a list, call you usually at the wrong time, and then read at 100 mph from a script; completely impersonal and offensive.
Enter Internet marketing. Less intrusive, they take the list and eMail you. The ethical ones will wait to be invited by you opting in to be on their list. This is really the only way that is legal. However many still use purchased lists of names where this is not a direct request to them personally – a gray area.
In any case being a willing participant on a social network marketing site, you may be privy to lots of the same information and decide that you are interested in learning more about what marketers are doing. Very different environment when you are the one who requests information in an atmosphere where people are being natural and open.
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