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Social Media Networking and Blogging: The New Party Line?

Social Media Networking and Blogging: The New Party Line?telephone

Do you remember hearing about how telephones used to all be on Party Lines? The way it worked was that you had a specific ring pattern assigned to you and when the ring matched your pattern, the call was for you. Your neighbors shared the telephone line with you, but they had a different ring pattern.

However, curiosity would get the best of most folks, and even when the ring wasn't theirs, people would still pick up the phone and listen in! Sometimes the listener would get caught, and sometimes, they'd get a real good ear full! LOL.

If you needed to make a call, you'd have to pick up the phone and listen to be sure that there wasn't any one else on the phone before you made your call. Of course, when you made your call, you do it by cranking a handle on the phone that would ring up the operator, and she would put your call thru for you. Oh, and also listen in on your call, too.

Fifty or Sixty Years Later

Today, people are blogging and on social media website, everyone together. And we're finding that many of the manners required for getting along with others on today's "party line," still follow the Golden Rules of communication with others. Today's "party lines" are interactive platforms like Twitter, where you get instant response. And Blogs, where communication is a bit different in that it takes a little longer to get feedback from others.

New Rules? Or S-O-S?

Do we need new rules, or is it S-O-S (same old stuff)? With the old telephone party lines, and the rules they used, you weren't supposed to interject yourself into another's conversation. Today, interacting on Twitter, you are supposed to interject. You read, instead of listen, you think before you write, and in today's case, you need to add value. The same is true with blogging. Are these new rules or S-O-S?

What to add?

Value! If you can't add value, post a link back to the writer's blog. And when you want to post a blog, what do you post? Well, what's on your mind? What do you care about? What's your business, how it's doing, what's going on with it?

Here are a couple of Don'ts to keep in mind: 

  • Don't post on subjects you don't know or don't care about.
  • Don't sell to people, get to know them. It's a social media.
  • Don't write down to them, don't write over their heads. Remember who your readers are.
  • Don't attack the writer. This is a social site, be social, just like at a party.
  • Don't use another's words...not without giving proper credit!
  • Don't post as a response, "Thanks, great post." If you don'thave anything to say, move along, or leave a link to it on your blog.
  • Don't leave a response and then not check back to see if the conversation was continued. Check back, it's only conversation if there's two sides to it.

So, what do you think? What Don'ts would you add? What are your Golden Rules for today's social media and blogging web sites? And if you remember the old party lines, leave your experience here for all of us to enjoy!


Marianne Snygg, GRI, ABR, ASP
Broker Associate
ERA Herman Group Real Estate

ERA Logo 

Colorado Springs and Monument Real Estate

Comment balloon 7 commentsMarianne Snygg • October 26 2008 02:31PM


Social netwroking is great for business if you know what you are doing and write in a way that people can relate to you or they feel you can help them. Excellent topic:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) almost 11 years ago

Bill: Have you turned your blogging and social networking into closed sales? I haven't yet, but I'm totally enjoying this avenue of meeting new people and learning new stuff.

Posted by Marianne Snygg, ABR, ASP, GRI, SFR (ERA Herman Group Real Estate) almost 11 years ago

I'm just trying to get the hang of a matter of fact my old school manners of not interrupting conversations is not helping me jumpstart things as I don't want to interrupt...but I'm hearing I'm supposed to...guess I have to change my way of thinking?

Posted by Sonja Adams (Samson Proprties) almost 11 years ago

Sonja: It's not really interuppting. It's adding to. Everyone's so friendly, just jump in there. What's your Twitter url? I'll follow. Mine's @mcsnygg.

Posted by Marianne Snygg, ABR, ASP, GRI, SFR (ERA Herman Group Real Estate) almost 11 years ago

Thanks, Great Post!  Just kidding, I had to be that guy. 

In regards to your social networking to closed deals comment - I understand, but have you defined your purpose yet?  Most of the stuff we do online is just a means to a means, which isn't bad.  The education alone is worth the time we invest in social networks. 

I'm a loan officer, so the game is a different for us.  Real estate agents have to work a little harder online for the business than we do because your business comes directly from buyers and sellers.  What about networking with a local lender that you meet on AR and having them put some valuable mortgage content on your site or blog?  Find someone who knows how to write and market themselves online well.  There are a bunch of programs that lenders have knowledge of that could help you target a specific niche online for the purpose of generating new business.  

Even if you don't give your personal deals to the lender, just having the ability to participate on an agents site would be a fair trade for a few articles a month.  Buyers look for homes on real estate sites, not mortgage sites, so work together for a common goal. 

Sorry, way off topic. 

Here is a rule for social media - stick to the discussion and don't hijack conversations.  :)

Seriously though, great post. 


Posted by Mark Madsen, Mortgage Marketing almost 11 years ago

Hey Mark: Even if you were a little off topic, I appreciated your comments. I do have a local lender , who's also on AR, that's not only a business partner, but a friend as well. We are brainstorming at the moment, and I will delightedly add your suggestions to our sessions. Thank you so much.

Posted by Marianne Snygg, ABR, ASP, GRI, SFR (ERA Herman Group Real Estate) almost 11 years ago

Marianne - I totally didn't mean to take that off topic, which is why I added it to your rule list.  :)

Please feel free to have your loan officer contact me if you guys want some help putting the details of a co-marketing / blogging relationship together. 

Good luck, and I look forward to following this discussion about social media rules.



Posted by Mark Madsen, Mortgage Marketing almost 11 years ago

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