David Soler

Five precautions to be taken when going to participate in a network

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

After working for some time in networks I have just learned some tips that, amazing as it seems, turn out to be quite simple and obvious and some, we already had in minds since our inception in this network. But sometimes I talk to friends and clients about some things I think are basic so I decided to put them on paper.

So I leave you with my 5 basic precautions to be taken when going to participate in a network.

  1. Your e-mail. Do not use your personal or your business email. You can open your Gmail or Hotmail account to include all that comes  from the networks: message alerts, new entries in your groups, post from your contacts, etc. .. There are many people on the Net who´s role is only seek to expand its database of emails and then fill your inbox with spam (not to mention those that can trade with your mail, of course).
  2. Update your profile and put real data. The difference between a complete and incomplete profile is only 15 minutes. And I speak about basic information. If you also use all the applications that most networks put at your disposal you will improve your presence. There is no need to detail everything you did, but the necessary information for someone to accept your request for contact. A summary of who you are, your picture, and the dates correctly. Making false or inflated claims is another of the “weaknesses” which should be avoided. Keeping your information up to date is also a way to gain visibility as each time you do your contacts will know and want to review your profile
  3. The political and religious ideas. If you’re not a politician or an active member of a religious order, avoid these two issues. They tend to generate too much controversy and as a result of the limited space and time you have in the networks, argument becomes difficult. There are blogs and forums, specific locations where these issues can be discussed and where of course the willingness of participants avoids misunderstandings, as well of course the use of a nickname is possible to ensure anonymity.
  4. Define your level of privacy. To reassure those who have just arrived, those who are not on the Web because they do not feel safe on the Internet, all networks offer different levels of privacy of information. There is even some information you will share individually with each of your contacts. I recommend starting with high levels of privacy and gradually reducing it.
  5. People and groups to which you’re invited. In accordance with points 1 and 2, when someone sends you an invitation to connect check his profile to avoid joining the network of someone looking for your email or looking to fill your mailbox with ads or trying to lure you into a great business deale. Not to mention those who only seek to “suck” your contacts or to polish their profile. Some groups are simply useless and have no reason for being. And the worst are those who only seek to have thousands of members and then send their “business news” using their Newsletter to group members.

And above the list the most important is to be yourself. After all the networks are just people who come into contact with each other.

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