How many people are in your network? Or, let’s even say that you don’t consider that you have a network in the first place. How many people are in your address book?
I don’t know the numbers, but I’d guess most people would have over fifty people in their address book. Some people have over 500.
These are people that you know, have communicated with, and have had enough interaction where they have given you their personal e-mail address or other information.
How do you consistently communicate with all those people? Consistently as in once a month or two. Not communicating once every year or two; that’s not enough to have a relationship that continues to build.
Personally, I send a 4-5 paragraph e-mail to a personal distribution list once a month. And a picture of the family doing something fun. That’s outside of any normal interaction that I have during the course of any given day.
The interesting ethical question is whether or not it is appropriate to send out a missive of some type to those in your not-as-personal network such as those people who have connected with you in a service such as LinkedIn.
If you send a note, or a newsletter, once a month to your LinkedIn network, does it constitute the equivalent of spam?
Linked Intelligence offers up the discussion through Communicating with Your Connections — Spam or Networking? The writing and the comments offer some good perspectives.
I come down this way: if you want to link with me, you should know the edited version of what is going on in my life. That’s what networking is for. You should get my monthly e-mail.
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