What can Stumbleupon, Digg or del.icio.us do for your business

In addition to using social networks to grow your business and find loyal followers, it is important to also understand the significance and power of social bookmarking sites. Whereas social networks are a type of community where like-people congregate, social bookmarking is a way to make public your favorite sites and web pages. Instead of bookmarking a site on your hard drive for your own pleasure, you let others know about it so they can bookmark the site as well. Examples of social bookmarking sites are Reddit, Technorati, Slashdot, Propeller, StumbleUpon, Digg and del.icio.us (now called Delicious).

thumbs upIn the early days of Slashdot, if someone let others know about your site, you could potentially receive thousands of visitors, and many websites crashed due to the unexpected volume. So, if you think these sites are a waste of time where your business website is concerned, you must rethink your strategy! To be able to get your content or news story on the “buzz” page of Stumbleupon, the “front” page of Digg or the “popular” page of Delicious is an incredible feat and definitely a boost to any website.

Stumbleupon can be be quite useful for your business as a way to attract quality traffic. Although the site will ban accounts that display outward instances of spam and self-promotion, it will send visitors to your site with just a few “thumbs-up” to your page that was stumbled. Thumbs-up is the way in which other users vote for your page. The site also allows you to make a profile page which is advantageous.

Delicious is much less restrictive because the other users do not have to vote for your page or content. You can basically bookmark every page within your website. In addition to potential traffic, the backlinks will help your search engine rankings. We are not saying, however, that you need hundreds of inbound links from the same site. Many people also express the loyalty of Delicious users, the fact that they come back regularly looking for content in their areas of interest. As a way to organize your bookmarks, you can give them “tags” which is similar to categories.

Read moreWhat can Stumbleupon, Digg or del.icio.us do for your business

How to use Social Networks to your Advantage

social mediaIn today’s society, you cannot escape the fact that the internet has become a social hangout for people all over the world. Even if you are the oldest person on the earth and have no clue about websites, you hear the familiar names like Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, and others. Reporters ask you to comment on their pages, and television commercials tell you to follow businesses on their fan pages. But what is social networking and how do you use social networks to your advantage?

Social networks are places on the internet where you interact with others. They have gone beyond the scope of message boards to become instant response centers. Unlike forums where you might wait hours or even days for someone to answer, social networks are much like answering the telephone, or receiving a text message on a cell phone. Individuals have effectively opened up their personal lives providing all kinds of information about themselves, and letting others know anything and everything from what they are wearing to what they are cooking for supper.

Read moreHow to use Social Networks to your Advantage

Making a Twitter Page for your Business/Web site: The Benefits

TWITTER LOGOTwitter page is a good idea for businesses who want to keep themselves and their brands in the limelight. That does mean that every time you “tweet”, you have to promote your website link, but it does mean that you should be adding useful information to conversations to let people know you care and can offer something of value or substance. Although there are no specific rules of etiquette for using Twitter, there are nonetheless, some things that are common sense really. Before we look at the benefits of making a Twitter page for your business or website, let’s examine two things which you must avoid.

1. Avoid the urge to “tweet” 24/7. Unfortunately many people are finding that Twitter is addicting. Somehow they feel if they are not tweeting, they are out of the loop. Understand that reading every update and tweeting is a detriment to your business and your time management.

2. Although Twitter is very informal, avoid the urge to talk about frivolities. Be professional. No-one cares about your cat using the litter box or your pants that are too short.

Despite these two warnings, there are a variety of reasons and benefits to make a Twitter page for your business. Here is our list abbreviated in point form.

  • A way to build excitement and interest for a new product. You can give users advance notice of an event or a product launch in the pipeline.
  • Responses are immediate which aids in information gathering. If you want to know what your customers think or need input on something, a poll or question will help you get what you need. Just be careful not to divulge proprietary info for which you have not yet trademarked or patented.
  • A form of networking. Find joint ventures, freelancers, customers, and mentors.
  • Twitter is a consistent place to find you. Many people follow others on particular blogs or magazines. Once you are no longer a contributor, there is no way to follow you anymore. A Twitter page resolves that issue.
  • Encourages you to work especially when your page is busy.
  • Gives you the topics to create articles and blog posts.
  • Spy on your competitors.
  • If you need clarification on something, get help from others by asking your question.
  • You will receive traffic if you are helpful to others. Don’t only use your links to your website but also show links to general websites which are beneficial to the reader. For example, if you do accounting, and someone asks a particular question, there is no reason why you cannot send her to the relevant page on the IRS site or a certified accounting association.
  • Twitter users will spread your word if they like you.
  • People are more in tune with an identity, a person, rather than a company logo.
  • Level playing field. You can connect with experts where otherwise it would have been impossible. Try contacting experts by telephone or mail. But many times, they will communicate with you on Twitter pages.
  • Twitter gets information out instantly. Many see the “news” on Twitter pages before newspapers.
  • More than one person in an organization can tweet on the page.
  • Search to find out what others think about your products and add useful information to their sites. But do not get defensive and engage in combat. Use the information to improve your situation. Be helpful above all.
  • Can be used for instant meetings when people are not in the same location.

As you can see, if used properly, making a Twitter page for your business or website has many benefits. We have a very young twitter-page over at @dom4j – but have had great succes with The Lingerie Post‘s twitter-page!

Making a Fan Page for your Business/Web site on Facebook: The Benefits

FacebookIt is generally agreed that the more advertising, especially free, that a business or website can undertake, the better. And so it seems that making a fan page on Facebook would have its benefits. But before we speak about the advantages of FB fan pages, we want to make you aware of two critical points.

  1. Just because you already have thousands of “friends” on Facebook does not mean they will quickly and immediately run over to your fan page. We have seen that even seasoned internet marketers and well-known individuals have had to use some creative techniques to get their “friend” base interested.
  2. It is a lot of work to get users to your Facebook fan page. In addition, once they are there, you need to interact with them to make the page successful and keep their attention. You really need to make it useful for them because they are not going to waste valuable time coming to see nothing. Likewise, the page needs to be updated regularly. Ignoring the page will backfire on you and your marketing efforts.

Now that you understand that Facebook fan pages do not equate with instant success, let’s take a look at the reasons why you should persevere and the benefits associated with making a fan page for your business or website on Facebook.

Read moreMaking a Fan Page for your Business/Web site on Facebook: The Benefits