Larry Brauner

Most social networking sites provide several ways to communicate, and depending on circumstances, one way may be more suitable than another.

Let’s discuss and compare the most common communication forms:

  1. Comments, guestbook entries or testimonials
  2. Private messages
  3. Bulletins or notices
  4. Blogs or web logs

Comments tend to be overused by most networkers. They are popular because they aren’t intrusive, they’re public, and because they link back to the poster’s page.

Comments have several drawbacks to consider:

  • They aren’t suitable for personal messages which might embarass the recipient.
  • They aren’t suitable for commercial messages. Comment spam is a major annoyance on networking sites.
  • They can easily go unnoticed or unread if the recipient doesn’t require comment pre-approval.

Comments are great for gaining exposure and for creating back links to your page. They are also good for giving kudos.

Private messages tend to be underused by most networkers. Perhaps they’re afraid to intrude. Perhaps they’re using comments for some good reason and go on to use them for all their correspondence. Or perhaps they’re just going along with the rest of the herd.

Private messages ought to be used every time you desire direct communication. Messages will get opened and read. Do not use private messages for spam. If you have a commercial message, get explicit or implicit approval to send it.

Bulletins are useful when you have a very large number of friends or contacts. Theoretically, they allow you to reach out to all of them with one post. Unfortunately bulletins easily scroll out of view before they can be viewed, and unlike private messages, recipients can easily ignore them.

A possible solution is to use your blog to supplement your bulletins and other communications.

Spam is tolerated more in bulletins than in comments or private messages, but you should neverthelsss avoid it. Put unsolicited commercial messages in your blog, if anywhere.

Your blog is a public forum for your ideas and a place for public dialog, and your blog brands you in the mind of your readers.

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5 Responses to “Comments, Messages, Bulletins and Blogs”

  1. Frank Bowman on January 2nd, 2008 2:56 pm

    Hello Larry,

    Just wanted to drop a line and say how instructive these articles are for me, I enjoy reading them and learn a lot from you.

    I intend to follow most of your suggestions - hope to take networking seriously, try to make friends and some decent income.

    I see you suggest two links - that pay-back (Yuwie and Zion 5) - do you have more of these? … that are free and pay for some activity?

    Thank You


  2. MistrTim on January 2nd, 2008 4:00 pm

    Hi Larry and Happy New Year!!
    I so totally agreed with the subject line in your E-mail that I came right over, and in truth wasn’t all that disappointed when the topic of your blog wasn’t Publish or Perish (because that gave me the opportunity to swipe the title for my post today!)
    But I really did enjoy your post too Larry. Lots of good information there. No wonder you have a growing list of readers (myself included) so keep up the good work!

    To your Success!

  3. Larry Brauner on January 2nd, 2008 4:35 pm

    Frank, please see the first bullet point of my December 9th post.

    Tim, thank you very much for your ongoing encouragement.


  4. Dian on January 3rd, 2008 12:05 am

    Thanks for the tips.

  5. traverus rep on April 23rd, 2008 5:58 pm

    This is truly great info as i do agree with Larry. I am new to networking but hope to learn more from this site.

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