Social media in many ways is reinventing ROI to return on influence, impact and integration. Whether you use social media to strengthen your brand, drive marketing efficiency, or increase sales, here is the first half of 6 best practices to enhance your online return on influence.

1. Build a Relevant Relationship Bank™. If you have ever heard me speak, or have had a chance to read Relationship Economics, I describe your portfolio of relationships as your Relationship Bank. How relevant is your relationship bank to your social media strategy? The three fundamental attributes in your relationship bank are its’ quality, diversity, and the investment efforts you choose to make. It is seldom about the number of people you are connected to, but rather the number of interested people in your niche that you develop a relationship with.

2. Toot Your Own Horn. A mentor often reminds me that “if you don’t toot your own horn, there is no music.” You must publicize your social media presence, consistently. Create social links on your website. Add social links to your email signature, or include them on your business card. Include social networking profile links along with your forum signature. Don’t forget to add a professional headshot where appropriate.

3. Become an Object of Interest. Most people will make up their mind to connect with you – or not – in seven to ten seconds, based on your picture (face it, we are all shallow), robust profile, and the most recent one to three status updates. Keep in mind that people online are browsers, not readers. It is critical that you keep your status updates poignant, pithy, and of particular interest or value to your target audience. Ideal if you stick to what you know and can intelligently articulate. Post updates for the benefit of the consumers of that information, not yourself as the producer of it.

What other best practices have you found of particular value?

Interested in learning more? Be sure to take advantage of the additional resources Relationship Economics has to offer:

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