In today’s age of online business, dating and socialization, some people are wildly successful while others fail. To get as much traction as possible, you need to understand the essence of online interaction. Otherwise, your time online will be less than what it could be and potentially fruitless. Even if you have been online for twenty years, you can still gain valuable insight from the following.
Relationships aren’t easy. They require thought and effort. Regardless of whether you want personal or professional relationships, you need to know how to create the initial connection. You also need to understand how to continue to build that relationship.
Here are 4 Tips to Successfully Connect Online, whether it is the first or 21st touch point:
1) Approach Online and Face-to-Face the Same.
When you jump online, don’t throw out the rules you follow when interacting with people face-to-face. Don’t assume that you can leave out essential pieces of the relationship pie. Just because you can’t see someone, doesn’t mean you can forget to follow good relationship practices. Social rules apply online, some people just choose to ignore them. That is one reason why they don’t get much traction online.
Ask yourself if you would feel comfortable doing or saying something face-to-face. If not, skip it online. For example, you probably wouldn’t ask someone to partner with you in business the first time you chat in person, so you shouldn’t do that online. Right after meeting someone, you wouldn’t ask them to show you pictures of their kids, so you shouldn’t do that online. It’s just weird. This type of interaction, though, is common online. Don’t be the person others ignore or avoid. You can’t build good relationships that way.
2) Also Approach Them Differently.
Being online requires you act differently than when face-to-face. In person, you can see and hear people. Online you can only read what is on your screen.
Studies conducted by UCLA Professor Albert Mehrabian revealed that only 7 percent of communication is verbal. A whopping 93 percent is non-verbal. YIKES! That is a huge opportunity for interpretation and misunderstanding online where we access only the verbal communication. Without the visual and vocal cues you normally rely upon, you are forced to make assumptions. That can open a can of worms.
Everyone has experiences and variables they draw upon to interpret what they read. That is why two people can respond differently to the same book. One might think it is life changing and the other might feel it isn’t useful.
That explains why it is more difficult to connect online. You have to be conscious of what you write because you don’t have the non-verbal cues helping you. Most people haphazardly type the first thing that comes to mind. Then they wonder why their efforts to connect with specific people go nowhere.
When you are sarcastic, for example, someone who doesn’t know you well, might misread your statement. They get offended, rather than laugh. They can’t see your face or hand gestures. They can’t hear the sarcasm dripping from your voice as you roar with laughter. You might not know they misinterpreted what you wrote. Typically they won’t ask for clarification.
People read, react and move on. You don’t always get the option to respond or explain. Online communication isn’t fluid, it is broken fragments of what could be a better conversation in person.
3) Know your Goals.
When they aren’t clear, you will have to work harder and longer to get what you want online. Your subconscious will direct how you give and receive communication. It will also control what you notice consciously. It is best to have your brain focused. Otherwise you will spin your wheels a lot for very little return.
4) Find the Right Costume.
You may not realize it, but you always wear a costume. Even if you are a minimalist, you still have external wrapping. Your clothes, hair, jewelry and accessories all constitute your costume. You know who you are and show up accordingly. When you sit around half naked with coffee on your shirt, that affects you mentally. It comes through in your communication, even online.
Everyone has a switch that makes them shine brighter. It could be lipstick, a tie, earrings, shoes, wallet in the pocket, whatever. Not sure what works? Test. Determine what effect each has on your attitude, productivity and engagement. You might be at a loss for words without shoes on, or really bloom in loose fitting clothes. There might be several combinations that energize you. Figure this out sooner than later.
If you implement all of these, you will successfully connect online. Be strategic and you will get there faster with a bigger network supporting you.
Hi, I’m Jaree Freeman, Connector, Speaker, Promotion & Networking Strategist. I love to laugh, travel and spend time on the water with my daughter, husband and big dog. I’m also a serial Entrepreneur and the Founder of Connect Epic.
We help you Build Powerful Relationships that Increase Income, Visibility, Opportunities & Solutions. My goal is to help you create a Profitable Network, so that you get more of what you want, in life and business. Join me at ConnectEpic.com or on Facebook at Connect Epic