Poll: Do you add your clients as friends/contacts on the social networking sites you participate?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 08:55
May 8, 2010

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you add your clients as friends/contacts on the social networking sites you participate?".

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Local time: 17:55
English to Swedish
LinkedIn May 8, 2010

The only social networking site I've added clients to is LinkedIn, because, well.... that's what it's for. Not that I'm actively using it, but it's my repository for professional contacts and information. I don't have personal contacts there at all.

I've never had a Facebook account (and I never will) and my Twitter is personal, not professional (I got annoyed with all the crowdsourcing initiatives for translations on Twitter. Who participates in these things? Uploading your TMs to some website where others can use them freely without ever compensating you? Who are you people??)


Local time: 17:55
English to Italian
+ ...
One answer is missing: May 8, 2010

no, I don't want them to think they can constantly dispose of me as they wish.


Mary Worby  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:55
German to English
+ ...
Not generally May 8, 2010

I was added by one customer on Facebook, but she no longer works for the company in question.

It would feel strange to have customers on there. I'd have to be that little bit more careful about what I said! (I have been known to bemoan unreasonable customers!)


Sophie Dzhygir  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:55
Member (2007)
German to French
+ ...
Depends on the relationship May 8, 2010

In any case, I use only professional networks (like LinkedIn). They are especially intended for business relationships, so of course I may add customers, but only those I get very well along with.


Teresa Borges
Local time: 16:55
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
No May 8, 2010

My relationship with my clients is a professional one, amicable, but not close...


Amy Duncan (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:55
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Yes, sometimes May 8, 2010

I've gotten quite friendly with a few people I work for, as well as some translation colleagues, and have them on Facebook.


XX789 (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:55
English to Dutch
+ ...
Yes May 8, 2010

Yes, I have changed my strategy a few years time ago. Gone are the days during which you could present yourself as Akebono Translation Service. If you want to be succesful as a company these days, you must mingle with the people and show your true self. No one buys PR bullshit and mission statements anymore. There's only one valid mission statement: all babies must eat.

So there you have it. You have to become close and personal. I am no longer Akebono, I am Loek van Kooten, someone with feelings and thoughts. You may not always agree with me, but I'm human and I try to be honest. I'm also a damned good translator.

Nowadays people hire me as Loek, not as Akebono. This forces me to treat clients as human beings instead of companies, and it forces companies to treat me as a human being instead of a tool or a slave. Though I never dared show my real self on the net, I've bitten the bullet and done it anyway after seeing that more and more companies open a profile on Facebook and Twitter.

Contrary to what I expected, it made my working relationships much easier. Clients now actually tell me: listen, there's no need to finish this on Saturday. You must spend some time with your wife and kids, as you've worked way too hard this week.

And believe it or not. They actually understand why I want them to pay my bills on time now.

Would you have expected that?


Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:55
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
LinkedIn and a few on Facebook May 9, 2010

Loek's answer was an eye-opener!


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Poll: Do you add your clients as friends/contacts on the social networking sites you participate?

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