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Online social networks such as Facebook are being used to express and communicate real personality, instead of an idealized virtual identity, according to new research from psychologist Sam Gosling at The University of Texas at Austin.

“I was surprised by the findings because the widely held assumption is that people are using their profiles to promote an enhanced impression of themselves,” says Gosling of the more than 700 million people worldwide who have online profiles. “In fact, our findings suggest that online social networking profiles convey rather accurate images of the profile owners, either because people aren’t trying to look good or because they are trying and failing to pull it off.

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Stands to reason in my opinion. Most people aren’t there to disguise themselves and live out a fantasy life or anything. They just want to connect with people. It’s that simple.

If they wanted to ‘be someone else’, they just join internet properties where that’s the whole idea eg World of Warcraft, Second Life, etc.

The internet just enables people to do something simly “human” and that it to *connect*.

Do that with your prospects and they become customers. Do that with you customers and they become fans. Fans rave about you and bring more people like them to you. Basic math.

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