Many professionals haven't clearly defined why they are getting on social networking sites. It's more important than ever to understand your reasons for showing up. As you add value and gain credibility on these sites, you'll activate trust in your followers. Value, credibility, and trust are the main components that turn an observer to a follower, a follower to a fan, a fan to a lead, and a lead into a client.

Social media success is not achieved simply by adding thousands of unknown followers to your contacts. When you focus on numbers only, you invite in a fair share of unwanted spam and junk followers. It's important to have a well matched following who is open to your comments, information, and expertise.

Social networking gives people a powerful opportunity to get in front of big audiences in a short amount of time. With that kind of access to so many people, you find yourself facing new opportunities to attract ideally matched clients. In order to make this work using social media, you must have a clear plan.