Friday, June 20, 2008

Who is your company's social network?

Who is your company's social network?

You've probably already got the skeleton of one if you've had a web presence for any length of time.

If you don't yet have a social network or you're not somehow collecting people within your domain, you need to get busy. Do this...

1) Get every email address from every email, customer request, newsletter subscriber, blog poster, etc., etc., etc.

2) Organize them with as much personal data as you've collected.

3) Go to Ning.com or any of the other platforms and create a social network around the interest all your email addressees have in common. Be smart about this...an online store specializing in holiday decorations will find few social networkers interested in the store itself; however, the store's social network may find great interest in the subject of 'Decorating for the Holidays.'

Another example is that of a mattress store. The mattress store owner knew that his customers buy mattresses less often than they buy a car or even a house; so, rather than create a blog about mattresses which no one would read anyway, he created a blog about backpain, the reason several bought a new mattress, something in common they could share, and something that was more ongoing than the need for a new mattress.

Don't design your network around your business. Design your network instead around a shared interest.

4) Send an invitation to your email list to join your social network.

Presto...a little maintenance once in awhile and there you go...your social network.

Next - What to do with them?

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