No one likes listening to a sales pitch.  But everyone wants to know what his or her friend does for a living.  Because of this simple truth, online social sites have gained enormous popularity and website owners are growing their businesses significantly without having to pitch their products.

This article describes specific tools that will increase our social equity online.  When we follow these guidelines, we will build relationships that will make a difference in our revenue streams as well as in our personal lives.

First, maintain consistent, if not constant interaction with online associates.  This is not just about staying neighborly.  When shifts in our industries happen, or are about to happen, our online associates will be there to inform us and give us direction.  Having close business contacts could potentially save our businesses. Only through steady, positive communication will we create relationships that matter.

Second, ask for help.  When we ask for assistance from experts in our field, it improves our relationship with them, it doesn’t diminish it.  People love to feel valued.  When they see that our intention to learn is genuine, they will respect us for asking, and our social equity with that person will increase.  Stopping other activities to give our complete attention to our online peers is a great way to build social equity.

Third, tell them that you

appreciate them.  One key mistake we make in life and online is not showing gratitude to those around us when we do receive assistance – including assistance that we have paid to receive.  Sending a gift, a physical greeting card, a phone call, or even a simple email saying “Thank You” goes a long way to increase our social equity.

Fourth, give freely.  When we share valuable industry-shifting information, or offer services or products to our online associates without cost and without expecting anything in return, our value with those relationships increases considerably.  We will not only be someone they trust and admire, but someone who they will talk about with their other online acquaintances.  Unconditional gifting is as valuable as having trust seals on our websites, and just as effective at growing our businesses.

Fifth, get to know the competition.  We have all heard the biblical theme “love your enemies”.  Well, one of the best moves we can make to build social equity is to connect in positive ways with our competitors.  True, they might not have our best interest at heart.  Nevertheless, building social equity with them could lead to a meaningful partnership.  Or we might learn which products we are selling that they aren’t, and vice-versa, and which services we offer that they don’t.

In conclusion, as we utilize these tools to build social equity, our needs currently handled by search engines will be fulfilled in much more personable and financially beneficial ways.  Soon we will have so many close business associates, that together we will be able to support, guide, and lean on each other to resolve our most pressing questions and concerns.  Because that is what friends do.