Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Social & Business Networking

Networking is a way for all of us to express ourselves, share interests, connect or reconnect with long-lost friends. More importantly, it can help our careers by making new business contacts. Social networks include friends-based networks like Facebook and MySpace, music and movie networks like Flixster and YouTube and business social networks like LinkedIn and XING.

Social and Business Networking have become very popular during the past few years, but can still be difficult to understand for someone new to using on line networking. You need to decide on the best business and/or social networks for you and your organization to utilize. Facebook may or may not be the right place...and you have to micro-manage your Twitter account in order to get the most from it.

For example, let's say that I have decided to use Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and a Blog in addition to a website. I want to drive traffic to my web site to ultimately make sales. So, after setting up the various accounts, I begin to link them together. For Facebook, I can create a personal page, a company page or a fan page and I'll want my latest posts to automatically flow to Twitter, my Blog and the web site. For Twitter, I'll want to make sure that my posts flow to the website, Blog and even back to Facebook. For YouTube, any videos I post, I will also want to include in by Blog, on my website, and I will want to place links in Twitter and Facebook.

With the rise in popularity of social networking sites, it's apparent that they need to be part of your marketing mix. Listed below are the top 20 Social Networking sites for 2011. Together, these sites represent 60 million visitors a month, and you need to address that large and growing market.

And, you'll want to make sure that each and every page on your web site should be fully optimized for SEO. You want to get the most out of your website and the social media you are using. There are a variety of on page and off page optimization issues you need to address carefully to make sure your site is optimized for the best possible web traffic. If you're looking to optimize your own Web pages, you might consider web page optimizer software.

Here's the latest tally:

Social Network: Members

Facebook: 550,000,000.00
MySpace: 200,000,000.00
Qzone: 200,000,000.00
Twitter: 175,000,000.00
Habbo: 162,000,000.00
Windows Live Spaces: 120,000,000.00
Bebo: 117,000,000.00
Tagged: 100,000,000.00
Friendster: 90,000,000.00
LinkedIn: 85,000,000.00
Flixster: 63,000,000.00
Flickr: 60,000,000.00
Classmates: 50,000,000.00
Ning: 42,000,000.00
Xanga: 27,000,000.00
hi5: 27,000,000.00
Stumbleupon: 12,000,000.00
Care2: 9,000,000.00
del.icio.us: 5,000,000.00
Meetup: 2,000,000.00

In all, there are some 200 social networking sites on the Internet. You need to determine which ones are right for your business, focus on several networks and integrate them. You can always add more networks as you go.

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