The 7 Habits of the Highly Annoying Social Networkers

1. Sending spam messages selling products on professional focused social networking sites. Yesterday I received an InMail on LinkedIn with a list of recommended holiday presents and links to purchase them from a fellow group member…seriously? How is this related to professional networking?

2. Sending personal anecdotes or jokes to people you do not know personally. Such as the Constant Contact email I recently received featuring a picture of Tiger Woods beaten up and then below it information on a financial firm – do I need to say more?

3. Writing disparaging and personally mean messages to other members in comment sections of networking sites (flame wars). If you don’t agree with another member’s opinion – show some class and share your opinion, don’t take personal pot shots at the author or any other member for that matter – the only credibility questioned in these types of comments is yours.

4. Post products you are selling under group discussions. I recently saw an advertisement in an IT group I belong to under the discussions section pushing fictional books on tape – again how is the professionally relevant to developers?

5. Ignoring your audience – the reason you joined a social network is to have a voice. A message from another member should be responded to – they are listening to you, don’t turn them away.

6. Post links to anything you are promoting on someone else’s wall. I recently accepted a friend request on Facebook from someone I barely knew and they actually posted a link to my wall promoting a book they wrote – needless to say it was quickly deleted and that person de-friended. Is my wall really a place for you to promote your book?

7. Posting Profanities – If an f-bomb is really necessary to get your point across, don’t do it on a professional site and make your comments unsearchable. Keep in mind that prospective clients, employers, and colleagues are going to Google you. I am not judging you – but they probably are.

Professional networks are a great resource, yet if they are used to hawk products & services it only decreases their value. Use your network, don’t abuse it. If you do fall prey to any of these online foibles there is an appropriate way to handle it. Contact the poster directly and let them know your thoughts- don’t start an online argument. I have found the following approach to work best: Contact, De-friend or Unlink, and lastly report. Any other recommendations?

Views: 324

Comment by Kathy O'Reilly on December 15, 2009 at 12:09pm
Great reminder for all social networkers! Simply put & to the point. Anyone who extracts more value than they add = annoying!
Comment by Renee Peschel on December 15, 2009 at 12:13pm
I love this article. How true it is. I have someone that posts weekly that she does housecleaning.

BTW - I tried to send you a message and ended up sending a friend request without a message. Please just disregard it. (I guess now I know why some of the friend requests come with no information.) Perhaps that can be habit #8.
Comment by Michael Long on December 15, 2009 at 12:25pm
Nicely done Andrea! I personally enjoy the automatic DMs in Twitter that first excuse the fact that they are sending an automatic DM... WOW!
Comment by Sam Evans on December 15, 2009 at 12:59pm
Excellent articleand and oh, how very true! Hope they listen... :-)
Comment by Brian Meeks on December 15, 2009 at 1:00pm
I would like to add...

....people who 'follow' me on Twitter, that are using bots or have never posted a tweet. All they want is for me to follow back, so they can get big follower totals.

Great post.
Comment by Alex Brown on December 15, 2009 at 1:53pm

That was perfect! Thank you for sharing!
Comment by Brad Zirulnik on December 15, 2009 at 2:17pm
but how does one "un-follow" someone on Twitter? I can't figure it out-- is there such a thing?

Comment by Kathy O'Reilly on December 15, 2009 at 2:21pm
Brad, click on the Twitter name, and to the far right, there's a little wheel button. Click on that button and you will see one of the options is an "Unfollow" option.
Comment by Brian Meeks on December 15, 2009 at 2:22pm
Yes, it is in the same drop down list as the follow. If someone is following you and you block them, they will not be able to follow you.

If you are following someone, you no longer wish to follow...Click on 'Following', Then choose the drop down list, the one that looks like a gear, and you will see the option to unfollow.
Comment by Brad Zirulnik on December 15, 2009 at 2:42pm
It's good that I have you guys. Thanks! Brad


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