Social Networking Blog

Guy Clapperton on the evolving new media

How not to win friends in a social network

Social network
Image via Wikipedia

Some great tips from the Feverbee blog on ways of dooming online communities and other social networks, by extension. It involves things like not planning your first ten members, not befriending people before the launch and making big announcements (so setting expectations when you’ve less to say).

There’s actually something a lot more basic that you can do to achieve much the same level of screw-up, in my view. It’s very simple – you just set the thing up without any clear idea of your message. The times I’ve seen companies decide they need an online community of some sort (they’d have called it a Web forum a few years back) and forget they actually need something to say, thinking of this only when they’ve started telling everyone it’s coming, is embarrassing.

Of course it needs marketing and of course it needs some sort of strategy. But many of the issues associated with an online community become a lot more straightforward if you address the basics first.

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April 6, 2009 Posted by | social media trends | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Twittergadget for gmail

Useful thing, here. My thanks to the original blogger. Night all.

April 5, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Social media experts 2

Earlier today I blogged about social media experts and how half of them don’t know what they’re talking about. It’s all too new, nobody’s an expert yet.

Another post has been drawn to my attention on Twitter by Nikki Pilkington, for which my thanks – have a look at this item on how you know when you’re talking to a social media expert – and be prepared to cringe at how many of these habits you’ve adopted yourself!

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April 3, 2009 Posted by | social media trends | , , , , | Leave a comment

Test blog entry from phone

Just testing, move along, nothing to see here…

April 3, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

199 utilities to help manage your online reputation

…which is of course far too many – being a bit consistent and genuine is far better than fixing it afterwards. Never mind, for people with the time here’s a link to an article with all sorts of utilities linked.

April 3, 2009 Posted by | Social networking providers | Leave a comment

Social networking ‘experts’ and ‘gurus’

Digitage Web 2.0
Image by ocean.flynn via Flickr

Someone asked what I thought was an odd question when I started this blog a month or so ago. “So, you’re going to become a social networking guru then,” they said.

Once I’d picked myself up off the floor I asked them why they thought so. “Well, the socialnetworkingblog.co.uk domain name, the book coming out…” I could see how it was looking. But I’m not. In fact I hate people who describe themselves as ‘gurus’ or ‘experts’ in such new areas – I don’t actually believe they exist yet, we don’t know how social networking will evolve over time because it hasn’t had enough just yet. I was delighted. therefore, to be shown this piece on people styling themselves as such describing them as idiots.

It did make me think a bit about my objectives for the blog. First, this blog exists as a statement: I’ve been commissioned to write a book on social networking and I’d look ridiculous if I didn’t walk the walk and other such cliches. It’s a good repository of links I might come across that will help me, and if I can share some of the insights I gain with other people along the way, fair enough. When I found the socialnetworkingblog.co.uk domain name was available I couldn’t resist it, which is pure vanity, but if I have a book in the area coming out it might yet be useful for marketing.

And I do a bit of speaking in the area, it’s true – I enjoy that part of my work (actually I enjoy most of my work except the filing and record keeping, but nothing’s perfect). And if the blog brings a bit more of that work through, great. Sharing your research is a new way of working for me, but I’m finding it highly pleasurable.

None of which makes me anything like a guru. A guru knows stuff. A guru offers guidance, vision and direction. When the book comes out it’s going to be a lot more about practicality than the vision thing, and accommodating social networking into a business plan. Simple brass tacky stuff is what I want to offer, nothing high-flown. And there are so many people who claim they’re some sort of social networking know-it-all! Frankly even if I did know everything about social networking I wouldn’t call myself a guru, it would put me in the same league as so many chancers!

I was talking to a colleague – who I met through social media of course – about this only today. She thought of a new term I could use. I don’t have to be a guru, I don’t have to claim to be an expert somehow, I just have to use this new term and it’ll work fine. I think I’m going to do it. As of right now.

That’s it, then. I am the social networking antiguru. End of!

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April 3, 2009 Posted by | Unexpected things happen | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Social Networking makes you more productive

Facebook, Inc.
Image via Wikipedia

I’ve had a feeling about this for some time. And now there’s actual evidence to suggest social networking makes you more productive. Visiting Twitter, Facebook, YouTube et al actually makes you a better worker.

Some of us have been saying this sort of thing for years. As long ago as the mid-nineties, when I signed up to something called Cix (still going, a very early social networking thing before the term was invented) once I’d gone freelance I noticed that if I had some human contact, albeit through a keyboard,  I was happier, more motivated and therefore more productive.

This is exactly what services like Twitter offer, particularly to the self-employed or remote working community. I’ve been stunned – often – to read about people banning their staff from its use, missing the point that having pointless conversations about last night’s telly is part of the process, not something that distracts from it.

And now it’s official. There’s evidence. I’m not surprised in the slightest.

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April 2, 2009 Posted by | social media trends | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Glue Lets You Browse the Web With Your Facebook and Twitter Friends

Glue Lets You Browse the Web With Your Facebook and Twitter Friends

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April 2, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Twitter overtakes newspapers on G20 reporting

No overtaking
Image via Wikipedia

Well, that’s what it says here. One of the Frontline Club‘s bloggers claims that Twitter is overtaking traditional methods as the place the G20 stuff is being reported.

I’m sure that’s kind of true. Social media is increasingly important and this is a case where it’s being noticed. On the other hand until someone produces an issue of the Times with 140 characters only I’m not sure there’s a direct comparison to be made.Sure, bulletin for bulletin there are more Tweets than reports – but until someone does a word/character count on all the traditional media so we can see how many Tweets it would account for, the position isn’t clear.

You could almost think it’s not really a like for like comparison, don’t you think?

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April 2, 2009 Posted by | social media trends | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Digital v. real world – a pointless distinction

A server used for the My Home
Image via Wikipedia

Great blog piece here on the difference between the real world and the digital world. I’m delighted to draw people’s attention to this sort of good sense.

It’s now a few years since I was at a wedding and mentioned to a friend that I’d got some really good advice from the Internet on dog care – basically (if you’re remotely interested and let’s be honest, there’s no reason you should be) my dog’s nose wasn’t cold and wet and I found through the wonders of technology that it didn’t need to be. The friend – older than me – was appalled I’d take the word of a machine.

On a different note, a friend of a friend – no, really – has had marital problems because their partner became involved with someone on Second Life. This, everyone thought, was crazy because it wasn’t ‘real’.

The thing is, digital media is no less real because it’s digital – it’s just another way of expressing yourself. My experience with the dog wasn’t me believing a machine, it was an example of someone finding another expert through a machine – much as you might do with the phone. The marital thing was a bit different; neither of the participants could see their ‘real’ selves, of course; what they could certainly see was that things weren’t good at home so they found another outlet. Nobody is going to tell me that marriage was working before someone started playing this game.

There will be more of this and we’ll find out more about how we interact in this altered world. Our experience is an evolving reality and always has been. When Concorde was invented our reality took on a supersonic dimension if we could afford it; when the telephone was invented and later television our reality gained a mass communications dimension, and now, big wow (or not), it’s taken on a digital dimension in addition to the rest as well.

But digital being outside of reality? You’re kidding.

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April 2, 2009 Posted by | social media trends | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment