Using Social Network Websites to Grow your Business

Marketing online is changing rapidly. A short time ago no one cared anything about the social network websites, at least not as far as business promotion is concerned. The world has changed. When it comes to easily finding and communicating online with other internet users, social network websites are, perhaps, the best way to go. Any serious Internet marketer will make use of the social networking sites, or will miss big opportunities.

Joining a social website
If you are interested in joining a social network website, the first thing that you will need to do is find a network to join. You can easily find a number of networks by performing a standard internet search. For the best search results, you may want to search with the words social networking or social network websites. In your search, it is likely that that you come up with a fairly large number of different networking sites. Popular sites that may be included in your search results may include, but will not be limited to, MySpace, Stumble Upon, Digg, DirectMatches, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Orkut etc etc. You may have heard of all of these and there are hudreds of more out there. We use Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn and many more. Remember that our primary purpose in belonging at all is to promote our businesses.

Social Networking Websites

Here is also a list over the biggest social networks in the US as of April 2009 

Top Social Websites - April 2009
Top Social Websites - April 2009

Your profile
Once you have made the decision to join a particular social network website, whether or not it is one of the ones mentioned above, you will need to register with the site. Even free networking communities require that you go through the registration process. Once you are registered, you should be able to start communicating with other community members. Before you start communicating, you may need to develop your online profile or profile page, depending on the networking site in question. Although it may seem easy enough to create a profile, there are many internet users who are unsure exactly what they should and should not include.

Your picture - IMPORTANT!
Perhaps, one of the most important things to include in your profile at each social network is your picture. While a personal picture is optional, it is ideal. Many internet users enjoy taking to someone that they can see in their minds, without a picture this is difficult. Personally, from the standpoint of using social networking for business promotion, we think it is unprofessional to not include a decent picture of yourself. If you are looking to use social network websites just to meet new friends you may not necessarily need to post a private picture.

Personal information - Safety
In addition to your photograph, you may want to include your name. Now, when it comes to your name, you need to be cautious. You are advised against giving your full name, especially if your profile or profile page contains a personal photograph of you. In addition to your name, you may want to put down your location. As with your name it is important to display caution. Your picture, your address, and your full name can be dangerous, especially if it falls into the wrong hands. As much as you would like to fill your social networking profiles with personal information, you are advised to think about your safety before anything else.

You may also want to include information on yourself. This information may include your hobbies, issues that are important to do, your likes, and your dislikes. With many social network websites, including MySpace, you will find that there are preset profile fields for this information. In addition to preset questions or categories on your likes and dislikes, you may also find additional information, including fun questionnaires.

By keeping the above mentioned points in mind, you should not only be able to create an online social networking profile that is filled with valuable information, but you can do so while staying safe at the same time. Your safety on the internet is in your hands, that is why it is important to think about safety, as well as internet popularity.

Once you are established with a social network or two, you will need to spend a little time at each learning what is available. Once you have built a few relationships it may be time to start putting a little marketing in.

Kind regards
Tom & André