"A good ad which is not run never produces sales."~ Leo Burnett.
There is a sort of secret courtesy that people rarely address on Social Media about conducting business. It's a little bit of a taboo topic.
Offline we meet people, become attracted to what they have, and buy stuff ~ Or, over a period of time, trust them enough to monetize that relationship with a transaction. We Do Business.
Or we meet people and stay in the social sphere. We chat, communicate, interact and stay purely social. We Are Friends.
We often view these as mutually exclusive concepts. Monetary exchange of goods and services and the exchange of words, ideas and experiences that form our social connections. Business or Pleasure.
Now cyberspace and social media has built a wonderful structure that challenges this exclusivity. The structure screams out that if you have enough connections and conversations in social media - business will just happen - Magic. Well ... Indications are that even with the great benefits of social media we still have to go through 3 steps:
1. Communicate on the social media stage.
2. Move the communication to another venue.
...(By phone, in person, email, to your site, etc.)
3. Monetize the relationship - recognize revenue.
Yep -some transactions will occur in step one - but they are few. Undoubtedly they will rise over time - but for now - Social medias unspoken secret is that most business happens when we move the relationship into step two and beyond. When the interaction becomes personal rather than social. Even the tertiary advantages of referring friends, through social media, to a business necessitates a move to step two. Or we stay social, and by request, mutually exclusive.