Social Networking Rule No 1. Be Authentic

Today, I’m introducing a guest blogger, Valari Jackson, a gifted coach and friend of mine. Since she teaches how to use social media, I’ve asked her to share her insights on the good, the bad, and the ugly. Here’s her first of three rules.

I’ve all been there. The room is filled with the sounds of several intriguing conversations and the scent of freshly baked hors d’oeuvres and yummy desserts. Everything from the latest stock quotes to the most effective way to keep a lawn green is being debated. What a wonderful way to unwind from the grueling day of under- valued offers, overly picky buyers, and the 6 month long short sale transaction. Will we ever get a response from the bank? Oh well, you decide to relax into a decently aromatic glass of wine and then the door opens.

Woops… It’s him again. Who invited him this time? You try to make a quick exit and notice that the doorway is filled with the people who, like you, don’t care that he sells insurance. You don’t need a policy review, flood insurance or long term care. How can you avoid that same impression?

Perception is Reality

The story above illustrates how we can be perceived on social media sites when our sole purpose is to get business. Sure, that is the ultimate prize but let’s not forget that social networks are designed for just that-socializing. Although the characteristics of the many different sites are as vastly contrasted as the people who use them, the main goal should be clear-allowing people to get to know who you are and what you value. No one really cares that you have a new listing that is $40,000 under assessed value, if they don’t first know who you and that you are someone they can trust.

Find Opportunities for a Genuine Exchange

The best use of any networking setting business or otherwise is to find opportunities to have a genuine exchange. Sharing the whole you and not just the real estate you will foster trust. Be discreet however. If you are having relationship and financial concerns this is certainly not the place to unburden yourself. On the other hand, a friendly sports team rivalry or light hearted debate is always fulfilling. That said- Go Lakers!

You can contact Valari at