Do Bloggers Have An Edge?

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Imagine how hard might it be to do business with someone if you could not see him or her to interpret his or her body language. Even if we do not meet someone in person we can still ‘meet’ them via technology like Skype or Google+ Hangout. You can see their facial expressions and their reactions.

Have you ever seen the blind auditions on ‘the Voice’? The judges listen to the candidates voice only and make a decision as to whether or not they might like that person on their team.

What if you had to do business without seeing your customer? I am not talking about ecommerce sites like Amazon. I am referring to those instances where you are trying to make a sale and you normally depend on reading physical cues from the person you are pitching to. How would that work? I can only surmise that you would have to rely heavily on other senses like hearing.

The next logical question is whether or not you would actually choose to do business with someone you have never seen, virtually or in person. If you normally depend on physical cues to help you make that decision, would you be comfortable making that decision without them?

I started thinking about how we judge people by what our eyes tell us and how our first impressions may be skewed by what we see.

In some respects blogging helps us get to know a person before we ever meet them. More often than not we never meet our readers. Bloggers do not depend on the usual physical cues to connect. It’s an interesting dynamic when compared to how we connect with others outside of the blogging world.

So what do you think? Do bloggers perhaps have an edge over those who depend on physical cues to connect? 

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Filed in: BloggingTechnology

Comments (20)

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  1. findingourwaynow says:

    This is an interesting thought. I believe we gain a great deal of insight into who and what an blogger is about by what they write and how they communicate with their audience. Would I do business without some form of visual communication? I'm not sure? It's so easy to connect via Phone, Google hangout or Skype I have never needed to make that decision. 🙂

    • Geek Girl says:

      I have not been faced with a decision like this either. So many sales reps depend on those face-to-face meetings it makes me wonder what they will do if that type of selling falls by the wayside.

  2. Susan Oakes says:

    Hi Cheryl, I think content does give you some insight as well as the way they reply to comments or emails and the response time. I have done business without seeing someone and I guess it depends on what they sell. For example I don't need to see a graphic designer to hire that person. That said communicating offline via Skype does help to develop the relationship.

    • Geek Girl says:

      I agree. There are some people you could hire based purely on their work. But it is nice to at least skype with them and cultivate the relationship.

  3. Nami says:

    You have a very good point. I think, telecommuters are slowly beginning to understand themselves, too. On the other hand, trying to prospect with sales calls by email is way less effective, I find.

    • Geek Girl says:

      Someone trying to sell to me by email will get exactly nowhere. Good Point!

  4. projectwhitespace says:

    oh yes they do!! I remember having a social media relationship with this person–a female, and I thought she was so wonderful. Then I saw her on video, and her mannerisms and tone of voice surprised me. I thought she was weird. I hate to admit it, but I did! So, I thought about what I was thinking about this person, and how I thought of her before, and I decided that it didn't matter her voice or mannerisms, her spirit and REAL personality were coming through to me through her writing. And that's what mattered. It really made me think (like you) about how we make our impressions about people from what we see with our eyes. That's not good enough. True, had I met this person in person from the start, I would have liked her, but it would have probably have taken me more time to get to know her past my initial "sight" impressions of her. Blogging has helped me a lot this way. 🙂

    • Geek Girl says:

      I understand what you mean. Blogging is like a breath of fresh air. I am an introvert so I can only imagine what some people might think of me at first blush – stuck up, standoffish, not friendly – none of it true. People can see more of who I really am when I write. 🙂

  5. Wow, Cheryl. You and I have had vastly different experiences. As a freelance writer living in the boonies for the past 20 years, almost all my work is done online with people with whom I've mostly only communicated by e-mail. My working world would be very solitary if I didn't have my memberships, groups and online connections.

    Blogging comes quite naturally to me as I love interacting with people. That's why I make a real effort to create a community on my blog(s).

    • Geek Girl says:

      You are right. We have had very different experiences. I have been in a public / corporate world for a long time. You are taught to read people's body language when you interact with them. Blogging has given me a glimpse in to a very different world of communicating. It's a very different way of connecting and I like it. 🙂 I appreciate the 'community' on your blog.

  6. Dan Meyers says:

    I work with a global team so most of our time is spent working with each other virtually. There are definitely challenges, but when you're all on the same team and working towards the same purpose it becomes a little easier. However, what's tough is when there's big decisions to be made between contentious groups. I don't think there's a replacement for non-verbal communication because people can mask their emotions vocally. That being said, there are some ways to cues that you can pick up on when you're not in person 🙂

  7. JeriWB says:

    I often have thoughts along the same lines as well, especially since I am making the transition from the the classroom (when I was surrounded my soooooo many people everyday) to this writing and freelance editing path I have chosen for myself. To complete projects soley through email communication has certainly been a big change of pace for me.

    • Geek Girl says:

      It must be a quite change of pace for you. 🙂

  8. Geek Girl says:

    I can only imagine how difficult it would be to come to consensus when you have decisions an disagreements. You also make a good point in that people can mask their emotions when speaking.

  9. I have found removing the phone liberating. As it is now, most of my communication is through email and social networks. After years of being mired in everyone elses world, I am finally at a place where I can know my family.

  10. Geek Girl says:

    Thanks for stopping by Jon! I just visited your blog and I salute you for the journey you are on with your brewing. I too am looking forward to leaving that crazy world of everyone else's and working for myself. 🙂

  11. Ideally we meet a person before doing business. But in our online world it's no longer necessary. Having said that you have to make sure you are OK legally if you deal with someone on the other side of the world. If not you may have nasty surprises coming your way.

    When you get to know another blogger through their writing you are more likely to cooperate with him/her than if the person in question wasn't blogging.

    • Geek Girl says:

      I agree. If I have been following a blogger, I am more likely to go out of my way to work with them.

  12. Larry Crane says:

    Hi Cheryl – I like to communicate in writing , I guess because with writing you can keep editing what you're saying until you find it acceptable to yourself before you send it out. Then, I came upon a blog that advocates videos and I've been making videos for a couple of years. The blog suggested starting out with a short blog introduction. So, I tried it. I cringe when i see it, but I'm sticking with it so far. Care to have a look? #

    • Geek Girl says:

      Welcome Larry! I was a winner of one of your books from Jeri's blog. I went to your blog and watched the video. I have not reached that level of bravery… yet. But I will. 🙂