You’re browsing Facebook late one night. Suddenly you laugh out loud.
This is it, you mentally exclaim. I have to share this image on my business page.
Stop! Hold that thought!
Would you be frustrated if someone took credit for your hard work, creativity, knowledge and effort?
What about if someone sees a little gem of an image you’ve shared and shares it without crediting you as the source?
It’s murkier, isn’t it?
Crediting your source might be easy to overlook, but Facebook courtesy matters. Indeed, it more than matters: it makes good business sense.
Surprised? Read on…
1. Social media is the new karma
Communities are linked online more than ever. Your customers can and do connect on your Facebook page. Your professional colleagues (and competitors) can and do connect on maven blogs and popular industry websites.
Last week, Darren Rowse – blogger extraordinaire and founder of ProBlogger – shared a great story on his Google+ page that illustrates just how small the world of professional photography is.
An unnamed blogger had offered one of ProBlogger’s readers a free copy of Darren Rowse’s eBooks in exchange for the reader writing a blog post for the unnamed blogger’s website. It came full circle when the reader emailed Rowse to enquire about the legitimacy of the offer. Rowse looked the unnamed blogger up on his system and sent him a polite email about his less-than-savoury practices.
Rowse was too much a gentleman (and too savvy a businessman) to name and shame. Others will not hold back.
Call it karma or call it connectedness, you risk its wrath at your business’ peril.
2. Links boost your Google ranking
Link building is important for search engine optimisation. Linking to quality websites can push up your ranking on Google and other search engines.
The higher you rank, the more likely someone searching online will came across your material.
3. Wider networks mean more potential customers
You can have written great content, but it won’t be read until you get it out into your network.
Facebook courtesy can help you build and nurture your network. You cannot expect others to link to you if you do not link to them. Pay it forward.
4. Curated content can provide social proof
Potential customers want social proof that you are up with the latest in your industry and you know your stuff.
Curating content from authoritative sources can provide that proof. You can show potential clients that you read widely and thoughtfully, your finger is on the pulse, and you are connected with thought leadership in your industry.
The golden rule of Facebook courtesy
We think of it as the golden rule of Facebook courtesy.
Framed in the positive, the rule is:
Treat people as you would like to be treated.
Framed in the negative, the rule is:
Don’t do it unless you’d be happy for it to be front page news in the Daily Telegraph.
(Yes, we know, it was the Daily Mirror rule. The rule has long outlasted that stalwart of the Sydney newspaper scene, which last circulated more than 20 years ago.)
Do it because it’s the right thing to do. Do it because you’re not willing to wear the consequences of doing the wrong thing. Either way, Facebook courtesy makes business sense.
Has someone else taken the kudos for your knowledge, hard work and credibility? How did you handle it?
4 thoughts on “4 reasons why Facebook courtesy makes good business sense”
That golden rule sounds pretty basic, if you ask me. As a business, you would want people to treat you nicely and appreciate what you do for them. You really have to be kind if you want to be considered a part of their good side.
= Gerald Martin, Resell SEO =
Hi Gerald, thanks for commenting.
Yes, you’re right, it sounds basic. We’ve found that all too often – whether deliberately or not – people don’t credit their source when they share on social media like Facebook.
And we’d argue it’s not just the right thing to do, but it also makes good business sense.
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It’s good to be reminded of The Golden Rule as it applies in social media, because it does tend to get blurry. A lot of common courtesies are taken for granted in this space, because people get used to doing things the quick and easy way, like simply clicking ‘Share’.