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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Social Networking, How to Start and How to Become Involved

Social Media is a big thing and social networking offers opportunities for personal research and business. This article is about basics, useful tips to become involved and first experiences with marketing the emediablogger weblog.

To start with something you probably look for the right service. For social networking at its best this does not mean a particular social media service but a social network aggregator. This is because one usually want or need to experience more than one of that great stuff. You may want social bookmarking and video sharing or a search engine for you bookmarks. Social network aggregators enable the management of the data in use to share bookmarks and other things across several networks and to connect to friends on several services all from one account. Personally I have choosen the Flock Browser which gives me something like a particular dashboard. Other services are located online, which allows to access all data from every internet connection. Second is a nice user name, which you can use across all networks you want to join and to become easily visible. It is also useful to get a particular email address, where the messages about new bookmarks, group activities and hints about new friends come in and a homepage or blog to be mentioned at profiles. Last but not least there is something particular, it is the OpenID Standard. This standard is supported by many but not all social media services. An OpenID replaces passwords and enables the usage of several personas. Personas means a synonym or profile so that one can manage several profiles by one OpenID Account, for example a private and a business persona. These are the basics to start.

Now it is time to choose some social media sites you like to use and to thing about the stuff you need or like to experience. There are great services for bookmarks and search, photo and video sharing of course and those hot things like twitter. At first you may consider personal or business usage. For business usage be sure to read the terms carefully as some services do not allow commercial use. If you are a trade professional you rather need to join specific business networking sites, where you can find real business contacts, discussions of business related issues and even trade leads.

To find the right network beside the purpose there are two basic strategies. One is the content you are interested in and the other is the reach. The reach is important for own visibility as you may want to become found and get new friends for discussions or sharing your stuff. To find the right network there are a lot of lists around with top ten or even top hundred social networking sites. Here is an older but comprehensive list with pages for most purposes: Best of the Best Web 2.0 Web Sites. You may find further and new services at FOLDEN.INFO by Social Networking.

If you are there it is time to start to share. You may wonder how easily and fast you will find great pages you probably never heard about. If you want to become recommendations you need to get friends or join groups. In most cases this is easily done by a click. To find the right people you may surf by tag clouds or groups. At groups you will find discussions, too. To seriously promote your own profile you may look for top users and become friend with them. To get the best results make relevant posts and get connected and be active. You should not do something irrelevant or even spam. It is really not useful and mostly there are anti spam policies. If you take care, you will easily be able to get worthful new sources and new contacts for networking. If you like to become a friend of emediablogger simply click on the links at the right.

Related to my own experiences with the emediablogger weblog there is another useful advice for professional users. What has been remarkable is that the profiles at the services I have joined new came up immediately at search engines, while the weblog itself has not. Whereas the new emediablogger weblog has not been marketed for itself joining social networking services might be useful for reputation management. One can easily get involved into a discussion and deliver related information about a person or service.

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