This is the continuation series of “Blogging 101 – Plan Your Move Early.” I want to share the small knowledge that I had so far. I know I still need to learn more, but I think you might benefit from it, so I share it anyway.
What is social networking? Social networking is simply the way we increase the exposure of our business or social contacts through other individuals. Many people don’t realize that we are building our social network everyday, either in business, social life, and Internet. How many new friends you got in these past couple months? How many new business vendors you were dealing with in these past couple months? How many new friends that you added to your Facebook, Friendster, or MySpace account? We do all these things everyday without even realizing that we are increasing the exposure of our self.
In blogging context, we are using social networking to increase the exposure of our blog through other individuals (or other websites). Basically, we are creating a “buzz” and relying on others to spread the “buzz” to other people. Several methods that I used for social networking:
People are hunger for news. They are constantly looking for new news about their area of interests. The best way to do this is to go to a website that offers you links to the current news that were submitted by others who had the same interests like they do. The answer is Digg.com. In Digg.com, news are seperated by different categories and peple can submit links to those different categories. What you want to do is that after you post your blog, digg it yourself in the correct category depending on what your post is about. What we are doing here is creating a FREE advertising to targeted audiences. WHAT???? you might ask. When people go to digg.com, they are searching for news under categories that they have already had interest on. By submitting our blog post under the right category, it will make our story to show under “upcoming” stories of the category that we choosed. In other word, our links will be seen by those people who already had interest in our topic. This will increase the likelyhood they will click the link and visit our blog. The best thing is it’s FREE. Don’t you love free stuff? I do 🙂
If you have never used StumbleUpon (SU), just be careful. It could be addicting. I installed SU toolbar for firefox. What it does is to allow you to surf “random” sites according to your preference of interest. You just never know what’s the next website. The idea is to stumble your own blog post to let others know about your blog. The key is to stumble it to the right category, so others can find your site.
This service is recently new, but quite effective sometime. AlphaInventions show slides of website in a cycle. You can include your site in their cycle to allow others to look, at least, at your page. You can be kicked out of the cycle if someone else bump you off from the cycle list.
Some of AlphaInventions’ visitors will just “fly” by your blog, and some of them will stick around and explore your blog more. Although the quality of the visitor itself is questionable, you can, at least, get more visitors instantly using this service.
Micro blogging….. It’s something that you did not hear that much until these past few years. Wikipedia defines micro-blogging as a form of multimedia blogging that allows users to send brief text updates (say, 140 characters or fewer) or micromedia such as photos or audio clips and publish them, either to be viewed by anyone or by a restricted group which can be chosen by the user. To do this, I choose Twitter, just because it’s more popular here in United States. If you were in Asia, plurk is probably more popular there.
How do you use Twitter? Twitter is not just a great social tool to find new friends, but it is also great to promote your blog. There are two roles in Twitter, “Following” and “Follower”. By following someone, it means that you will get any Twitter updates from that person. By having followers, it means that your twitter updates will be received by your followers, but their twitter updates will not be seen by you unless you are following them back.
How can use twitter to increase your blog’s exposure? really simple. Just update your twitter status about your new blog post with the link to your post at the end. This is the fastest tool to let other people know about your new blog post, even faster than RSS. Some Twitter addicts leave their Twitter always on (either through their cellphone or desktop application), which means that when you update your twitter, your followers will get your updated status almost instantaneously. If you have 1000 followers, it means that 1000 of your followers just got instant notification that you have new blog post. Wow…what do you think about that? not bad, right?
This is my favorite one. I use facebook (FB) quite a bit for my personal use. Most of my friends are in FB, so we contact each other through it. With FB, you can share pictures, video, chat, update your current status of what you are doing now, create a fan page, install applications, and many others. One of the aspect of FB that we can use to increase exposure is the “update status” feature. Like what we do in Twitter, you can do the same thing here. Share your new blog post by updating your status that points people to your page. Since people who are able to see your updated status are your friends. They will be more likely to check out your page.
I’m sure there are many other ways to leverage your site using social networking, and I realy want to know them so I can try them out. We are learning by doing, right? 🙂 If you know any, please share them here in the comments section.