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Archive for December, 2016

Networking for Authors- Personal vs. Business

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Many authors mix their personal versus business side on social media. I have to admit that I’m guilty of that as well, but there has to be a fine line you keep and don’t cross. It can hurt you and your family. You need to keep personal and business separate.

Protect Your Family

Social media has opened the door to those people we want to protect our family from. Evil lurks looking for ways to get to your children, you, your spouse, or just your belongings. They watch your posts on if your kids have soccer games, when you are with them, when you’ll be on vacation, and everything else about your life.

Oh, look! The Johnson family is at the fair. They’ll be there for several hours. Their house is empty. A criminal’s dream.

Keep your family safe by not posting all that info where your business networking people can see it. If you do mix the personal and the business, do not post real time. Share family status’ after the fact.

Have an Author Page

A solution to all this is to have an author page on Facebook and other such platforms. There you can post all your professional info and keep your personal separate. It is strictly for business, but…

Sometimes these type of pages do not the publicity that you like. On Facebook, they are set to not show up on the timeline of those who liked the page as often as a friend’s post does unless the page has a paid promotion and that is usually post by post. Due to the decline of such exposure unless money is paid, many authors have combined their personal and business. Some have successfully set up separate accounts, but officially you cannot do that on Facebook and others with two accounts of your own. You have to be careful with this.

Even if the author pages aren’t as prolific, I do suggest you have one and keep it all business.

Personal Info

Whether it is personal or business, you don’t want to give out too much personal information. You would be surprised what a criminal can use against you. That includes your bank into and social security number. I would say that is obvious, but someone somewhere actually does that.

Don’t give out your phone number. Yes, I know someone who set up a new account because she claimed she was being stalked, then told everyone to call her if they couldn’t find her new account. She then proceeded to post her number for the whole world to see. That’s not being safe.

Keep as much personal info as you can from your business networking.

Split Personalities

Another reason you need to keep the two sides of your life separate is your personality. Yes, that can be an issue. I had a publisher friend who mixed the two sides. Personally, she was a very funny woman with a crude sense of humor at times. That flowed over into her professional side which didn’t always sit well with others. A few authors and other professionals broke ties with her. The personal personality should have stayed away.

Author Networking No-No – Being Repetitive

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Repeating the same thing over and over is boring! People get sick of it. In fact, they will tune you out. That does not help you achieve your goals of networking and marketing. People are looking for fresh and new.

Same Old Story

Nobody likes something that they see over and over. Yes, it might be fun at first, but after awhile even the funniest commercial gets really old. No one wants to seem like a broken record.

I know a woman who goes on and on about the marital problems of her daughter. No matter what we are talking about, she brings it back to that one situation. I understood that she needed support, but it eventually just became a whining ritual. It got to a point of where I didn’t want to interact with her. Therefore, a failure to network.

You don’t want the same old story to be all you are as a person. You want to be more than that.

If you have one major thing in your life, try to limit how often you talk about it. Show variety.

Beating a Dead Horse

Stop going on about the same topic. There is only so much that people can take of someone beating a dead horse. What do I mean by that? Going on and on about a topic that is old. The horse is dead. Leave it alone and move on.

That includes politics, religion, your personal life, your writing, and anything that can get old. It might not be old to you, but to everyone else it can send them running. Pay attention to the topics you discuss. Leave that dead horse alone.

Author Networking Tip: Recognize Birthdays

 

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Birthdays happen all the time. Everyone has a birthday. Most social media platforms share that information with you. Use that. Recognize other people’s birthdays. It’s a great way to network.

You’ll Be Remembered

When you give somebody a birthday greeting, they remember you. It means something special to them, so your name stands out. Not everyone knows it is their birthday. Not everyone will send a message. If you do, you’ll be remembered.

Softens People

There are some people you might not want to send wishes to, but let me encourage you to anyway. I once worked at a company where this one woman was very nasty. I don’t think she ever said anything nice or had a smile on her face. It was her birthday, and I sent her an email like I did everyone else. She sent back a thank you. After that, she always smiled at me and said something pleasant. People would ask what did I do to change her interactions with me. All I said was that I wished her a happy birthday.

Remember that you aren’t having a long conversation with the person and aren’t looking at them face to face. Even though you might not like them, send them a greeting. You never know if it might change them.

Builds Strong Foundations

Simple birthday greetings can go a long way to building strong networking foundations with people. It shows that you noticed them and took the time to send the greeting even though you didn’t have to. That then leads to them noticing you more which can lead to more interactions. That is how foundations are started. All it takes is one simple phrase.

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