The secret to most business people’s businesses tend to stay secret. However, this is not always true with the advent of social networking. This is because the social media systems do not do a good job of protecting the information that they have on their systems. In fact, most of the time social media can be highly detrimental to business owners that want to use the systems for advertising purposes. This means that a business owner that wants to use social media services must carefully explore the pros and cons of that choice.
Wikipedia provides more of an academic definition of social capital. In my layman terms – it is the authority others give individuals based upon their knowledge/experience/interactions with the individual. If your social capital is high then your blog post/comments/articles are likely read and esteemed by many. If you are an unknown to some – your social capital is in heavy evaluation mode by that some. If your social capital is rated low by certain individuals – you are likely ignored by those individuals.
Have a Unique Voice – Don’t be afraid to stand out and speak your mind. Be willing to challenge conventional thinking – just use your experiences and become the voice.
Another way is with social media, but would require a little more effort. The idea here is to go to, for example, your favorite restaurants and rave about it on all the social media sites. Go to the owner and set something up. Trade your social media services for money. You can tweet about it on Twitter, and say “if you saw this on Twitter, you get X amount of on your next meal. Yelp is another locally oriented social site just for that purpose. You would be surprised at the amount of business owners who know nothing about the advantages of leveraging web 2.0. There are 1000’s of websites out there for this and all you do is sit there and plug in their restaurant, or gym, or health food store.
Create a Trusted Relationship – Social Media has done a great job enabling the development and nurturing of faceless relationships. Do the right thing to develop these relationships as there is much responsibility there. This includes distributing accurate information, enabling conversation, responsiveness, etc.
Twitter – microblogging site that can be used to update clients about open homes or new homes on the market. Also you can post cool things you see happening in a market, as long as it is 140 characters or less.
27. Seek Industry Leaders – Do your homework and find your niche and the associated voices there. You need to understand the conversation and challenges. Read, write, and engage other voices in your niche – it helps to build Social Capital. If you prove yourself they will quote you and want your feedback on issues.