Social Networking – A Venue to Get “Hit On”

Guest Post by Irene Watson

For me, Social Networking  was just taken to another level.  I don’t know if I should run, cry, report, or be flattered.

I received a friend request with the following message:

l must confess, your profile has really captured my attention and i will love to share in the joy of your smile, in fact i want to get to know you if you don’t mind. Wow, I like your striking smile, could surely make an angel with broken wings go an extra mile. I miss being in love and after staying away from the love scene for long time due to reasons I will tell you later on as we get to know more about each other, I have finally decided to give love one last shot. You might be wondering why I am writing to you with distance between us. I am looking for my soul mate and I will look everywhere in the world for her. You have got the spark and smile and that’s the first thing I look for. I will be glad if we get to know each other and become friends. You never know we could become the next success story on here as good couples. If you like, you can reach me by messenger or email. Please let me know if you wanted to talk and I will share my info with you

Wow, I’m being “seeked out.”  It’s obvious this man is on a mission but he didn’t read my profile – he just looked at my smile.  If he would have glanced past the smile he would have found out I’m married and have been for 44 years.  Certainly not in the place of looking for a soul mate. I have one and I’m not on the hunt for another one.

So, what do we get from this? What is the purpose of social media? For us, as authors, our purpose is to inform potential readers of our books and ultimately sell them. His is to find a soul mate. Each one of us has a different purpose.

Social media is the big buzz right now and everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon.  Of course, why wouldn’t you?  A video like the Old Spice commercial has brought in near nineteen million hits. On the surface it looks like the was an easy feat to attain but it’s far from that.

As social media marketing continues, it takes a lot more than to just post a video.  And, it’s not as easy as setting up a profile on FaceBook, having Twitter, or posting your book video on YouTube and cross your fingers you’ll get viral success. You have to engage your network. People want to help and share.  After all, social media has the word “social” in it. Answer questions, ask opinions, and share your thoughts and ideas.  Potential readers need to get to know you first and certainly don’t want to be “tricked” or “pushed” into buying your book. Create credibility.

So, what all has this got to do the guy that wants to be my friend?  Probably not much, except he was using a strategy of engaging me.  (That’s just another way of saying he was hitting on me.)

What successful “engaging” strategies have you had?  

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Posted on August 29, 2010, in Publicity & Writing, Writing & Publishing. Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Well, I am a social media Narcissist. I post messages on Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and other sites but I don't read what anyone else says. Maybe that's why I'm not a star but hey I have almost 500 friends and they aren't deserting me. If I have some tidbit like a book review, video, or interview that I think someone might like I post it along with as many keywords as I can think of. The rest is up to The Universe.

  2. Theodore Jerome Cohen

    Dear 'Hit Upon'…Cover your wallet, value your privacy, stay away from the Internet (it can a dangerous neighborhood), and have a nice dinner and evening with your husband. Ted

  3. Facebook, Tweeter and Likedin – good-buy. I cancelld them all, and now spend all that time on reading, writing and arithmetic.

  4. Facebook, Tweeter and Linkedin – Goood-Bye – I quite them all. Back to reading, writing and arithmetic.

  5. Victor, in his post above says "I don't read what anyone else says." I believe he's not the only one that doesn't read other peoples posts. I posted notices that I was giving away print books for free. I gave away 6 of my memoir, and that's only because a friend (that I actually know) told her friends. They were people that weren't even on my friend list. The other book, "Rewriting Life Scripts: Transformational Recovery for Families of Addicts," didn't even get one request. I have a hard time accepting that the near 900 "friends" I have on Facebook don't have a family member that has an addiction, therefore, I surmise that the posts aren't read. So…why bother?

  6. I am on FB and Twitter and I do read posts. I don't totally understand Twitter (or Tweetdeck) and it feels somewhat chaotic to me. Someone told me that Twitter should be a pointer–that it points to other posts or websites, rather than just tweeting about what you had for lunch. I'm not sure. i write for a small niche market but I'd love to broaden my potential customer base.The most shocking thing about your post was that you've been married 44 years. Wow, wouldn't have guessed that from your photo–you look far too young to have been married that long. And, btw, big applause for you being married for so long. Thanks for the service you provide to readers and writers. I enjoy your posts.

  7. I am not an author

    I had a friend request from a parrot.His profile picture was a green amazon . When I denied the request saying I didn't make friends with strange birds. He came back and said " I'm just a bird I won't bite. I decided to accept. Later his "Mom" requested to be friends too.

  8. I have found that I spend a great deal of time networking on gather.com, facebook and I post regularly on associated content and redroom. But I have worked up quite a bit of conversation (for lack of a better way of putting it) with the groups at gather. I have tried squidoo and ning and goodreads, but there doesn't seem to be the conversation aspect as much. I don't believe 'social network' means – putting up posts and not reading others – that seems like a monologue, not a conversation. I have also had the 'hits' you have gotten from the wandering souls looking for their mates – I read them and delete them – I also get the SEO requests – again I read and delete. No one said this was going to be easy. If you want to build the connections, you have to put in the time!

  9. Dear Irene,My husband fell in love with me through a photo I sent enclosed in my first letter to him. Fell in love before he read the letter. Smiles count! Congrats on your new, unwanted beau!By the way, I always read your posts. Just wonderful.My strategy on FB and Twitter (am on Linked In, but who has the time to do all every one?) is to post a variety of things. Photos, quotes. helpful links, uplifting or thought-provoking quotes.I'm new to the whole social media thing, but I am getting followers. Now, what is that doing for the sale of my book? I have no idea. My greatest conflct w/ social media is that it takes so much time – time I could be with my family or writing. I am sure I am not the first author to post this complaint.Thanks for listeningHolly

  10. I agree with Holly that the problem with social networking is the time it takes … especially with books, in which each sale is such a low margin. However, social networking IS a good way to talk with readers, which can be its own reward … and once in a while something 'clicks' and a bigger and worthwhile response happens. Also, you almost have to be SOMEWHERE online, so even if you only choose one or two venues, it pays to get involved and beef it up to something presentable. (Okay, self-defense probably isn't the most common argument for social networking, but it was one reason I first got involved.)On better days SN gives me motivation and feedback … on worse days I feel its just another brick in the ongoing genius plan to destroy authors' motivation and ideas of making a living from writing.Verdict = mixed 🙂

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