When using the new online social media to build my network marketing business, I follow the same basic principles I learned in network marketing: I meet people, share information with them and get to know them.

The beauty of using these online communities for building your business is that a potential prospect can learn a lot about you very quickly. They can see pictures of you and your lifestyle. Are you a family person? Are you single? Do you have children? Where have you traveled? Who do you know? These are all things they could not have found out during your first meeting with them at a local coffee shop.

Instead of you having to go out and meet people, in an online community people come to you because they are attracted to something on your profile page. Could you ask for anything more exciting?

Another great feature is that you can build a network of people very quickly. Two months ago, I created my first profile in an online community; today I have 1,270 new contacts who now belong to my network and with whom I can start building relationships with a click of a mouse. We can talk about our vacations, their business challenges, how we build our respective businesses or any other area of interest we wish to explore.

Imagine being in a global community where people are walking around with billboards that give you powerful information about them—where they like to travel, what business they are in, their age group, their likes and dislikes, whether they are interested in networking, dating or both.

People can of course control how much they want to share, but often you can find out how much money they want to make, whether they are into personal development, their favorite quotes and their heroes in life. This is a candy shop for network marketers, because now you can specifically choose the kind of people you want to work with and seek those out. Then you simply ask if you can be part of their network.

The “viral” potential is huge, because as you get yourself onto other people’s networks, people of those networks will ask to be part of yours just from seeing your picture and checking out your profile. Again, you have people coming to you because they are attracted to you. Remember that in network marketing the most common reason people join a company is because they are attracted to the sponsor.

One piece of advice: do not let everybody in who requests to be a part of your network. Think about the kind of people you want to be associated with and look for those. Read their profile carefully; if a profile has no picture, don’t give the person access. As in life, choose your online friends wisely.

ROBERTO TORRES is a police officer who retired at age 46
and started a network marketing business in 2000.
He currently mentors people by sharing his keys to winning.
He authored the e-book
How to Transition from Failure to Success.