Can You Increase Value in Social Network Discussions? Four Thoughts

Interview with Kenneth Vogt, CEO, Crooner Labs, Inc.

Situation: Individuals participate in social networking sites for several reasons – to network, to promote their businesses, products or services, and to gain insight through crowd sourcing. For these audiences, what are the best ways to increase the value in your discussions?


  • Encourage participants to move from a short-term to a medium-term focus. Short term focus is about lead generation, immediate results and “Buy, Buy, Buy Now.” Think of the man in the flashy sports coat selling cars on late night television. It may generate a “sale” but with low engagement and commitment. If focus you instead on engagement, you start to build growth which is more sustainable – which will stay alive with more momentum.
  • Clarify your objectives. Are you interested in sales or influence today, or this quarter? How much effort do you want to put into it and what payback do you seek?
  • Be patient. Take the time to develop quality content. This time is an investment which pays back both medium and long-term.
  • Stop treating people as though they are stupid and can be manipulated into buying from you. There is a karmic cost to this approach. Look instead at the potential benefit that you can provide that will attract people to your content. Think in terms of reciprocity – give first and let others decide how they will respond.
  • Some time ago I tried an experiment. I proposed a simple question: “What do you want?” I asked the question three times, each time with a different thought in mind – first annoyance, then confusion, and finally empathy. But rather than speak the questions, I sent them via instant message one after the other. The words on the page were exactly the same each time, “What do you want?” Yet without tone of voice, expression or body language, the receivers could instantly tell me what I was thinking in each case. The same works in social networking. People can read where you are coming from based on how you position your content. So if you want to increase the value of what you have to say or offer, offer it openly and invite your audience to respond.

You can contact Kenneth Vogt at

Key Words: Social Network, Discussion, Focus, Objectives, Value 

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