Social networking has hit the mainstream with a wallop, and if you’re not up to speed on how to interact in this medium, you may end up making some glaring mistakes. If you’ve been trained in traditional sales approaches, you’re in for a paradigm shift that may rock your world…or knock you off your rocker!

When people of a “mature” age (ahem!) ask me about social networking, I instruct them to learn everything they can about the demographic group called the Millennials. These are the 18-29 year olds who grew up with computers and are now making a huge splash in the marketplace. Their habits and behaviors are shaping the trends and realities of social networking and by 2010 they will outnumber boomers so pay attention!

Here are 5 tips-inspired by the millennial generation-that will help you sow the seeds of business with social networking.

1. People come first
From cell phones to Facebook, you have the option to make friends, name your Top Friends, and use that to communicate status and intimacy levels. A young adult may use this for purely social reasons, but in business this is used to show respect to peers, colleagues, prospects, and clients. Despite its electronic format, it does create a deeper level of conversation online which can lead to transactions.

2. Leave the sales pitch for your website- not your social pages
Top down sales pitches and most sales techniques will leave a foul taste on your pages. Because the focus is on relationship building, overt self-promotion will come across as pushy and manipulative. Who wants to be friends with someone like that?

3. Focus on what you have in common, not what divides you
Unless your target market is defined by religious, social, or political beliefs, you will want to err on the side of caution when posting your personal views in your profile. The best advice is to avoid distractions, and nothing distracts more than controversy. If your political beliefs are integral to building business relationships, then by all means include them. But if you’re looking to cast a wide net in social networking, then think twice before jumping on your soap box. You can always create a personal page devoted to your individual beliefs in any area, but if you have a business page be sure not to distract from the goal of attracting new connections.

4. Slow down
Amassing friends just for the sake of numbers may look impressive on your profile, but random friend adding only results in inbox clutter- and more inbox clutter robs you of precious time. Jot down some criteria for a friend and only add people who meet that criteria. Don’t be afraid to delete a friend if you find yourself spammed or deluged with crazy emails.

5. Relax your expectations and watch the results come in
If you planted a carrot, you wouldn’t pull it up by the roots to see if it’s grown yet. The same applies for social networking. Sowing the seeds and being patient are the keys to success. Sometimes you have to relax your high expectations. Chances are you won’t make the million dollar deal your first week. But you never know… work the pages and a new contact may lead you to the deal of your dreams.

The people making money on social networking sites are the ones focusing on relationship building and showing genuine interest in others. Put these tips to work on your social networking pages for online success.

Author's Bio: 

Nancy Marmolejo shows entrepreneurs how to generate more money and attention by positioning themselves as credible, recognized experts. An award winning business owner, Nancy is frequently quoted in the media in the areas of business and creative thinking. Get Nancy's 7 part free audio course by visiting

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