Art Of Communicating in Social Networks

Last Updated on February 24, 2010 by Wong Ching Ya

How to deal with tricky questions


Ahh.. one of those dreaded moments for the guys.

We all know the pressure here. Oh yes, we’re tricky. But you know what? A little wisdom can definitely save you off the hook. But first, you need to know your partner better– the ground rule before all tips and tricks.

How does this have anything to do with social media? Every bit of it – urgency and the consequences of a reckless response. Regardless celebrities or politicians, even us normal people are responsible for the words we blurted out in the open. You’ll be surprised a simple joke can either build you or crush you, especially when we’re networking with users from different cultural backgrounds and status.


Art Of Communicating in Social Networks


In order to interact better with people from various social networks, identify:

  • Who are they – readers, followers, business partners, potential customers, random chatters ?
  • What are their backgrounds ?
  • Where is the boundary; When shall the line be drawn ?
  • What’s the amount of ‘Trust’ built or given to both sides ?
  • What are the possible conflicts that may be or had already existed? If none, will you continue to avoid it ?
  • What is your personal branding in the public eye ?


Cautiousness in social networking does not forbid you to express freely, but the courtesy to think twice before responding. Our mind reacts quick to disagreements, fast to defend and attack. Self-protect instinct like this can easily blur our judgments. Ask yourself,

“Is building credibility important to me? Am I encouraging it or another way around?”

Let’s brainstorm based on some possible answer(s) for your partner below:


1. Silence : “… …


In Social Networking:

Social networking does not tolerate silence. If you’ve spent 5-10 minutes on a post surely there’s something about it that triggers your interest. Share your thoughts in the blog comment and create continuous conversations with other commenters. Hitting that ‘close’ button is easy but not if you wish to make all your blog visits worthwhile. Do SOMETHING.


For the guys:

Silence does not always mean safety. Advisable to have the ‘response’ ready if you are not prepared with the answer. Prevention is better than cure. Appear doubtful and troubled may sell you out at that instant.


2. Diversion: “Ah, It’s late! I’ll tuck the kids in bed. KIDDSS.. !!


In Social Networking:

Diverting people’s attention to our network seems logical, but not always welcoming if you hard push it. If you think people shall read your work, state out why and be convincing. Never flood people’s Facebook Wall and inbox with self-promoting post links for it is rude. You can easily jeopardize the friendship and trust people have in you.

Another kind of diversion is to run away from problems. I remember there were times I had trouble with the comment form in Blogger platform. Never occurred to me in trying out other commenting systems before I finally decided to move to WordPress from Blogger. Now I only regret for not doing it sooner, same thing with DoFollow.


For the guys:

Yes, temporarily this may solve your problem but don’t grumble if the question pops up in some most unlikely moments. The earlier to deal with it the better.



3. Honesty: “Then mood swing it is !”


In Social Networking:

There’s nothing wrong with honesty but mind that virtue involves. It is one of those ironies that got people wondering why it sounds much better in theory but not in practical. Going through the questions again and weigh in the consequences of each possible actions. We are not talking about your family members or closed friends who have known you for years but acquaintances who just shared a few conversations with you. Take into considerations all factors and risks involved. Shall this be done in private emailing or out in the open? The impact may cost your digital footprints and branding so you need to think twice.


For the guys:

Gals dig that, Right? For some lady friends I know, this can both be a straight forward question or a tricky one. Sometimes it is not just about the honesty alone, but the way you respond to the question. For some who can accept honest feedback, a little tip: no ‘must be’ or ‘it’s KILLING me’. Don’t forget you are being honest to help her, not trashing her self-esteem.


4. Skillful: “I love you just the way you are!”


In Social Networking:

Be thoughtful. You don’t add burden to an already troubled-mind. If you’re commenting on a site which the author talks about bankruptcy out of a poor judgment, don’t say ‘Stupid! I wouldn’t do that if I were you’ but be compassionate. There’s a line between hypocrisy and skilled communication, so make sure you know where to stand.


For the guys:

So far this has been chosen as the best response according to my female friends. Safe, they say, and can be the honest truth. You can’t really change anything, can you?


How To Deal With Tricky Questions?


There’s no definite answers on how to deal with tricky questions. It’s all about the art of communicating, how you willing to give and take in different situations. Perhaps it’s not common for us to face tough questions but someday when you do,

  • Understand the question thoroughly. It’s easy to ‘assume’ and misinterpret so always be SURE you know what exactly is in demand here.
  • Test the water with a brief remark; or provide scenarios (if needed) to understand the motive.
  • Be thoughtful. You can’t please everyone but don’t blind yourself with self-absorption.
  • Try to know your readers/followers personality through their writings or on social media connections.
  • Listen more.
  • Consider the consequences of each action.


Now It’s Your Turn…

Have you ever encountered any tricky questions? How do you deal with it? Kindly share YOUR art of communicating in the comments below.


Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *