You know someone whom you met in a party long time back or someone who is a friend of your friend. These people are, in general, known as weak ties in the world of networking. What do you feel about them? Do you like maintaining rapport with these people who are not closely related but acquainted somehow?
If your answer is no then keep reading this article. You should know what you are losing.
What is weak tie
Weak ties are, as we know, relations without any particular kinship. There can be few common interests but that is not a necessity for developing any weak tie. In our society, these weak ties fill the void space among the communities. Modern networking sites are, in fact, cashing and blooming on these ties. It won’t be overstatement that successes of social networking sites to a large extend depend on these weak ties.
Why they are so much in demand
Imagine a situation where people do not encourage weak ties and only build communities on kinship basis. What implications do you expect? Communities will grow very slowly or won’t grow at all. Social networks will end up being tabulated pages of contact and personal details. And after certain a time they will cease to exist. But that’s not happening and reason is communities are extending hands to weak ties.
But, what is so serious about weak ties
1. At any point of time we all have a limited set of kinship. But weak ties increase exponentially. Each kinship comes with its share of weak ties and when they become our weak ties our social visibility increase.
2. Weak ties bring in different tastes and interests. This results in diversity.
3. For the huge size and diversity, weak ties allow endless organic growth opportunity for communities.
Having said all these, it is now time to understand how to manage your weak ties. After all, they become your weak ties only when you reach out to these people. Knowing they are there does not make them your weak ties.
1. There are Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook and many other social media sites and every site has its own niche. You have to decide which one you should start with. For professional and business purpose, you should stick to business networking like, Linkedin. Chances of denial are much higher in Facebook from a person who is less known to you.
2. Your existing kinship is primary source of your weak ties. You can also use contact details that you collect in social and office gatherings. You have to first approach them mentioning where you met them first. Some of them won’t reply. But continue building rapport with those who are interested.
3. A common way to build rapport is ‘problem’. You can ask for solution to a problem you have faced, or you can try giving solution to their problems. You can also search for interests that both of you share.
4. Weak ties can be very good base for B2B market segment. Use your sales force or affiliates to expand weak tie base. Personally, you can also use your weak ties for business purpose. However, for business relation, you need dedicated people to support the process. Such base is important for the success of social media campaigns.
So, don’t underestimate weak ties and never forget to nurture them. They are the hidden social capital that many of us are not taking care of.
About the author: Alyssa Clarke is a blogger who also happens to be a tech freak She is always on a look out for tech stuff and she recently purchased a new pair of steiner binoculars and a cool bluetooth keyboard.