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Dr Amit Nagpal
10 good manners for social media 05 November, 2011
Good manners are as essential in social media as they are in any other aspect of life. If you wish to become likeable and respectable on social media and are playing the long term game, you must learn these manners.

Good Manner 1

Social Media is about sharing, not selling
Social media is all about sharing your talents and skills. Zig Ziglar rightly says, ‘You can have anything you want as long as you give people enough of what they want’. Become likeable and respectable by sharing wisdom and good content that you come across. ‘Service before Self’ is the motto of National Defence Academy, India. The same philosophy applies to social media.

Good Manner 2
Observe people before getting too friendly
First observe people what they like, how they behave, what they share and what kind of posts they comment on. Then slowly become friendly by offering help. You need to be extra sensitive when dealing with people of other cultures and young women for example. Many people get turned off by over-friendly behavior and may think that you have a hidden agenda.

Good Manner 3
Don’t vent your anger at people
Social media is not a place for personal vendetta and washing your dirty linen. Do not use it for releasing bottled up anger and frustrations. If you have a regular habit of doing this, it may prove costly as you may lose friends.

Good Manner 4
Don’t get too personal
Avoid getting too personal about family and vacations, etc., except when you are interacting with close friends and family on Facebook or circles in case of Google +. People are not interested in personal affairs of others unless it’s something sensational.

Good Manner 5
Interact, don’t sing your own tune all the time
It is not good manners to be talking all the time even if you are a celebrity, who cannot devote too much time to social media. Remember, we will never achieve anything memorable unless it is validated by others. If you establish a goodwill through your interactions, advice, suggestions, comments and offers of help, people will validate you.

Good Manner 6
Don’t ask for favors immediately
Remember social media is for the people who consider life a marathon and not 100 meter race. If you ask for favors immediately after someone joins your network, you may have to pay a heavy price in terms of your reputation, loss of friends and rude replies. Focus on giving and relationship building first and not asking.

Good Manner 7
Be sensitive, be a human being
Always look for opportunity to help people, within your constraints. But at the same time, keenly observe people who are behaving selfishly all the time and blacklist such people mentally. May be a quote or comment can make the day for a friendor who knows might change the course of someone’s life.

Good Manner 8
Don’t be negative all the time
We all go through negative phases and negative moods. Once in a while it may be human to do so, but if you do it constantly, your friends may start deleting you. Isn’t there enough negativity in the world, the media, material frustrations, failed relationships and so on? If you are angry at someone cool down first and then go social. If necessary, write stuff on paper and tear it later.

Good Manner 9
Don’t try to show off
Again once in a while, it may be fine to talk about your new mobile or your new car, but don’t make it a place to brag all the time. Remember it is only the nouveau riché (newly rich) who show off, coins make noise, notes are silent. Also, instead of talking about your successes all the time, behave like a human being who fails once in a while. Self-praise is no recommendation in any case.

Good Manner 10
What’s in for others?
When using social media don’t always think ‘What’s in for me?’ but rather think how can I benefit others. Believe me, whatever you will send, will come back to you sooner or later. In a way social media is a place where you learn to become less and less selfish and more and more giving. Do not openly declare your biases and prejudices, you may offend people (we all have some biases).

Now give yourself one point for each good manner which you already follow and rate yourself on a scale of 10. This rating is your Social Media Manners Quotient. The universe showers abundance back at you but if and only if you give genuinely and not just to get back.


About The Author
Dr Amit Nagpal is a Personal Branding Consultant and Social Media Trainer. He is based in New Delhi, India. His philosophy is, "Enlarge as a Human Being, Excel as a Social Media Being, Evolve into a Personal Brand". He writes a blog, Global Personal Branding 3E.
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