Welcome to another edition of Ms. Social Networking/Biz Manners. Ms. SN/B Manners has made it her mission to rid the world of business etiquette faux pas — both online and offline. While Ms. SN/B mourns the day when readers would mail her handwritten questions, she will accept digital correspondence at Ask@MichelePW.com.
Dear Ms. Social Networking/Biz Manners,
We all know how important automation is in our businesses. It allows us to leverage our time better. So I was excited to find a program that sends an automatic response to people who friend me on Facebook.
I set it up to say, ‘Thanks for accepting my friend request. Now I invite you to join my fan page.” But very few are joining and someone who I just connected with just unfriended me!
I’ve seen the same message on other people’s automated responses so why are they just ignoring my request?
We certainly seem to have an epidemic of social networking software programs that are lacking in proper etiquette training.
Although Ms. SN/B applauds your Facebook automated program didn’t request your new friends to buy something from you, asking them to join your new fan page without any sort of relationship-building (or even some sort of explanation why you’re requiring this) is a no-no.
Remember, software programs have not been programmed with proper social networking etiquette principles. They don’t know how to properly conduct themselves in each and every social networking situation. Therefore, relying on them to make the right choice is fraught with peril. Ms. SN/B encourages you to keep those software programs on a very short leash, at least until they prove themselves worthy of making the correct etiquette decisions.
As to why your new friends are unfriending you and not other people, are you absolutely sure other people are not suffering the same fate as you are? It is never wise to assume something is working in someone else’s business when you’re only seeing it from the outside. However, if it does turn out that it IS only you, perhaps it means your new friends are expecting something else from you. Like a special offer on a new email marketing program.