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Does Your Business Have Digital Manners?

Show Notes

Does Your Business Have Digital Manners?

No one wants to be “that” guest at the party. You know the one…

You don’t really want toinvite them because they are rude, turn up late and eat all the garnish. They complain about the fact that you have bamboo cutlery when they think you should be using your best silverware. You have to invite them because they are married to cousin Katie who is really nice and always brings fabulous desserts.

Is your Business being “that” guest online?

What are Digital Manners and Why are They Important?

Digital manners, digital etiquette or netiquette is basically how your business shows ups online. It is about using good manners in all your online communications / transactions from commenting on social media sites posts, to email and your website tone.

Manners are simply put the rules and behaviour we live by.

Digital manners like all manners in our offline interacting are becoming somewhat blured. What was once an absolute taboo is now becoming acceptable and in some instances expected. Like Gary “V”.

So why should we be worrying about manner especially digital manners at all? Because it will set your business apart, elevate your status and in some instances open doors that would otherwise be firmly closed.


Did you know that in a face to face meeting, 93% of the communication is non-verbal?

When we are using digital communications thatonly consists of words; we only have access to 7% of our normal communication tools. That is another reason why video can help bridge the gap to build online trust because we are increasing our communication tools when people can see you, hear you and watch how you behave.

Podcasts and audio communication fit somewhere in the middle. You can hear my voice, the tones I am using but you can’t’ see me.

Digital communication, especially emails and text message can often be misinterpreted especially when written in a hurry. Words like great, as difficult to distinguish if ridden alone.

Did you mean “GREAT”
With an excited voice?

Or “great” in a tiny scared voice.

Or great as a neutral – “Oh really” kind of voice.

Without any extra clues or communication tools it is almost impossible to tell. Remember to be as descriptive as you can when emailing, texting, and messaging; as the person on the other end may not understand the context behind your words.

How to keep your digital manner in check?

Now we know what digital manners are, what should we be checking?

Email Etiquette

1. You sent it so they will get it.

Never assume just because you pressed send (or thought you did) then the recipient will get it. How many times do you find that presky email still in your draft file or outbox. Even if you did sent it doesn’t mean that all the planet aligned and the person at the other end received it.

2.Always Followup.

Following up is so important. If you haven’t received a reply then call them and make sure they got it.

“Oh yeah I saw that” is often the response but you didn’t know.

Make sure you also respond to emails and message sent to you so you are not the one with to sasy “I saw that”.  It only takes a second to send back and emoji reply. Obviously reply in a matter that is appropriate for the situation but the point is to reply in some form.

3.All CAPS

Capitals used in 1 word can be used for emphasis but anymore is SHOUTING. Nobody wants to be shouted at.

Use call capitals sparingly. In some situations, you can get away with using them a little more. Like as headings where you have limited formatting options such as text message text emails or Facebook posts.

However, for Facebook you could break up or emphasise your text with emojies. In long texts, you could use capital more but do it with cautions. Maybe you should be writing multiple text not just one. If you have that much information you need to tell them a phone call or face to face meeting is probably better.

Social Media Etiquette

Social media etiquette could be a whole podcast by itself. Being with the basics, things like

  • Don’t steal other peoples content and try and pass it off as your own
  • Do credit content or photos that you use
  • Don’t overshare personal information
  • Do be mindful of other people’s feelings
  • Don’t post other people’s children’s name if they have not not

Social media etiquette goes for both personal and business. If you wouldn’t want the information repeated at a cocktail party then don’t post it. Remember even deleting information still leaves a digital footprint so don’t put it up there in the first place.

Understand Different Social Platforms Have Different Rules

There are lots of platform specific manners. Hash tags for example, use lots on Instagram, Youtube and other a few or more on most other platforms. Keep up to date on each platforms best practices.

 To direct message or not.

Connect and then immediately spam someone with a sales spiel is differently bad business manners on all platforms.

Stop and Think Before Commenting

Think before you launch into a rant, rav or policital comment on any post. Is this a good idea? How will my brand be seen?

Now, I am not saying don’t comment especially on the hot topics, just think about it first, especially if you are tired, emotional or have been drinking. What seems funny last night might be damage control today!

Don’t Try to Sell All the Time

Tom Hopkins who write “How to Master the Art of Selling” and sold 365 house in 1 year said,

“Build relationships. You’re in the people business and learning to make people feel important and cared about will help you make both the initial sale and long-term sales over the course of time”.

Add value with your social media, not just try to get the quick sale.

Does your Business Have Digital Manners?

Listen to Small Business Talk Episode 54 for the full episode.

On next week’s podcast on Small Business Talk, we will talk to 2 special guests and we are going to talk about how to make a business you love. See you then.

Does Your Business Have Digital Manners

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