Online in the social sphere people seem to either engage with genuine passion because they enjoy doing so or with motive because they want something. Peggy Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick) recently published a fantastic post called “12 Most Transparent Ways to See Through Someone in Social Media.” I witness so many examples of people paying it forward online that I want to call out some of the best methods for people to put into practice and spread the good #SK (Social Karma).
1. Engage without expectation
Interact with people online who you enjoy interacting with. Not who you perceive to be the cool tweeps on the block. Everyone has their unique set of interests and if you genuinely and passionately engage people your circle of online friends and influencers will grow.
So simple yet so many do not do it. If a tweet catches your eye and touches any bit of your soul, give the author a retweet (RT) and share the love with your networks. Better yet, leave a tweet better than you found it and add a comment and hashtag.
Whether you are a social media vet with legions of dedicated followers or a someone specializing in a niche area, be open to mentoring others online. Share your passion and expertise about the social sphere and topics that interest you and help plant some seeds for another person’s online success.
A great benefit to your fellow online friends is the backlink. When you write a comment mentioning them or content they have created, take the time to add in a hyperlink to the specific post or their site.
5. +K on Klout
Klout gets a lot of mixed reviews for their algorithm and whether or not it effectively measures online influence. One feature that everyone should love regardless of their opinion of Klout scores is +K. Five times a day I get to acknowledge people in various topics that Klout lists on their profiles and tweet it out to the world. I personally make sure to do it every night before I go to sleep and add in a few words and hashtags because I think it matters.
July 2011 one of my favorite tweeps Jessica Northey (@JessicaNorthey) published a post “Stealing Other People’s Work is Bad Social Media Karma!”. Someone had lifted her #CMChat description word for word. Apparently they even ripped off her slogan as well. No credit was given to Jessica and the only modifications to both were changing all #CMChat references to the new chat board name. Let it be known that Jessica and any other people like her work hard on their content and branding and doing something like this is bad Karma. Just ask the person who copied Jessica’s material if you can find her. She apparently had to close down all social sites associated with the offending brand. Regardless, it is good Karma to ask someone if you can quote or repost some of their work provided you clearly attribute the material to the creator and link to the source.
Socrates said “True knowledge is knowing you know nothing.” So true. We cannot possibly create all content solo. Offering to collaborate through joint chats, reviewing and giving feedback on others draft posts, and offering a guest author spot on your blog are great ways to pay it forward and expand your horizons in the process.
I love these. Calling someone out online and saying something positive about them and their work just because. It just oozes Karma!
9. Blog roll
A good blog should have a list of links called a “Blogroll” that links to favorite online people or blogs. Like backlinks, these help traffic to another site as well as search results. A great compliment to give another online.
10. Make a connection
“Tweep A meet Tweep B.” In other words if you know that two people in your online circles would benefit from knowing each other, offer up an introduction and a few positive words about each one to get the engagement going. People who do this without being asked are social for the right reasons.
Like retweets, this is a great way to pay a compliment and recognize great work by those you engage with. Anything from a simple “Thumbs Up!” to a more in depth comment to keep the discussion going is a fantastic compliment to any blogger and it may be the thing that helps inspire their next epic post.
12. Co-host a chat
There are so many great chats online that so many of us benefit from, and the people hosting them every week are saints for doing so. All of us who cannot commit to a weekly chat can pay it forward to them and everyone attending by offering to co-host a chat. Take your pick. Great examples of weekly Twitter chats driven by talented giving people who would love a solid guest host are #Toolschat (hosts: @Leowid and @Mqtodd), #LinkedInChat (host: @LinkedInExpert) and #SMmanners (host: @DabneyPorte) There are many more excellent chats out there as well. Take your pick.
I am sure there are more excellent ideas out there of how to pay it forward online. I invite you all to expand this list by adding comments and to share these ideas with others in the social sphere. Wishing you all good Social Karma!
Photo courtesy of Sashkinw. Used under creative commons, some rights reserved.