Twitter and Facebook don’t haveto just be chatting about theweather or baseball. Theinteraction can go beyondtagging each other with listwriting or poking wars.Networks are ultimately aboutrelationships.The ﬁrst step in building arelationship is listening to theother person. Listening is morethan observing the idle chatterstream. Listening is an activebehavior.How can you improve yourlistening habits? First, read all of the replies, DMs, and wall postsyou get. What? Read them, hesays? Yep, read them all! To thesender, the update felt worthsharing. There are golden nuggetsin there. Don’t neglect thisopportunity.Second, to be an active listener,follow someone’s stream of updates. If you have an interestor desire to build a relationshipwith a contact, single out theirstream and read back through it.Click the links, check out thepictures, and listen to the musicthey share. Is there a theme? Isthere a common thread of thought?Become an activeparticipant.
Engage that contactand ask them what’s going on.You can prompt them by askinghow their last week or their lastday was. Or pick one of theirupdates to comment on. Thenwatch to see what comes back to you.Trust me. If you think your socialnetwork is returning value basedon what you share, it willmultiply by how you listen.
Cultivate the relationships