Social Networking for Profit?
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The rise of social networking has made a lot of people wonder: "How can I make money from this right now?"
As an introduction, a blog ( web log) is a type of website or part of a website. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video.
Chat rooms are places where you can talk to many people at the same time with or without video.
Social network sites are places where you can communicate with friends about any subject either one to one or many to many.
A Newsgroup is a kind of blog that is maintained with comments on 'message boards'. They require a 'master' to monitor and cleanse them or keep them on message.
twitter is a social networking technology that uses short messages.
twitter really does not qualify as a blog or a Chat Room, although you might call it a combination mini-blog and mini-chat network. Also, you can see elements of newsgroups in it.
facebook is not a blog, but you have to monitor and maintain facebook entries. twitter is like a poor man's instant messenger and facebook is like a vanity web site with limitations. It's easy to put a lot of things about yourself on facebook and what you like and who your friends are. It's grown because kids like it a lot and adults have followed suit. The 'game' is to get as many 'friends' as possible with interests like yours.
Not the least of those wanting to know how to make money on social networking is twitter themselves, a fast growing social networking site. The strange thing is you can grow exponentially without reward.
twitter has been financed by venture capitalists and their long term model is nothing new. It looks like a business plan we've seen before from Google. They want to do advertising like Google does using the Adword methodology or a look-a-like. Like UPS copying American Express, they hope the market is unlimited and deep. They want to sell your needs to special interests groups. That is, John 'tweats', as twitter messages are called, a lot about music so put music ads in front of him.
The way it works for Google may not work for twitter, however. Google has a tremendous technical edge with their giant servers and huge search engine. Google is a brand name with 'fangs'. twitter is not in the same ballpark. Bing is a challenger due to Microsoft's size and the Hotmail connection.
You can see the power of Google with its YouTube product as ads are starting to appear. If you use YouTube enough, you will notice that the videos you are interested in are expanded by Google's very powerful search engine, wherein they lead you out on the branches of your interests.
twitter with a small 't', is a strange thing. It's not new at all. The kids have been using better methods for a long time in the form of instant messaging and using chat groups. These were different because they were not invaded by ads. The ideas was to get ads to consumers via facebook and twitter. The long term goal is to garner profit from the endless interests people have.
Everyone has found Skype very good for their use. It's a way to socially interact with the real person or persons. It combines the phone and video and conferencing. You can also leave messages.
twitter is much like a blog, except they like 140 characters or less for messages. They don't want huge traffic that includes giant pictures or video streams. Each tweet is like a staccato burst of dialog with shorthand like 'ur' (you are) and LOL (laughing out load, which rarely is true)
What twitter does is make short blogging easy for the non-technical user. You can make your own blog, although you many not have any real conversations.
twitter really chats so that's the strange thing because there are better ways to do that. The kids do it better. You have to learn the lingo, which is not all that natural. Some famous people have big blogs and also tweat with twitter. twitter's short bursts produce a long list of conversational elements. If you get sick of long email dialogs, you'll not like twitter. With the former, we always feel that we should start over again with a new subject, when things drone on and on.
At its best twitter is like a Friday night at your local pub with everybody talking about this and that at the same time. facebook is more like a vanity web site that is easy to make and update, but not really complete. One important thing to note about these networking sites is that they don't want to lose you so they keep adding applications that will keep you so that they can sell products to you. Games are a part of facebook's long range plan
It is hard to communicate in depth information with facebook and twitter, but that is not vital long term for either of them.
A recent industry survey shows the following content for messages in twitter.
Take a look at the twitter dialog about a mundane subject at the bottom of this page.
Along with facebook, twitter has become popular. Lots of companies, many very small, are trying to figure out how to make money with social networking, due to its huge traffic volume. There is a single answer. They'd be better off using a good web site, Google Adwords and/or focused email. Here is why.
As soon as you give control to twitter or facebook, you won't easily get it back. So the content that you've worked so hard to present to the public leads to twitter mini-blogs or endless facebook links to vaguely or not at all known people or things. If you have a facebook account, you must have been contacted by people you never knew or those you wish you didn't know. Talk about controlling spam!
If you are trying to sell a product, twitter will lead to the promotion of other people's products to potential customers of yours. Your hard won customer's attention on your ad or web site can wander off into the hinterlands. They've gotten to your web site and you've lost them to a blog or chat session. Will they return to your site quickly or get distracted by some sort of conversation with others?
Also, social sites as we have learned in the news lately, let people post things that are not true about people, companies and products. It's not so easy to shut down a hack or a commercial bully. They can post things quickly. It takes some time to control and eliminate this.
If you have children, you'd better look closely at their facebook site. Many are being used against their own creators in job interviews and educational opportunities.
It would be like buying a billboard for a special promotion and driving by and seeing it covered with comments, graffiti and directions to somebody's product and not your own or representing you as somebody you are not.
Being misdirected is a common thing using the Internet, when you're trying to solve a problem. You look up something in Google. You are lead to a message board (a form of blog) Ah, this person had the same problem that I do! Let's see what the solution is??
You run into long winded try this and try that, sometimes trying their solutions is worse than the problem you started with initially. With experience you learn to ignore the chatter and get to good solutions. It takes a lot of time to toss out the bad advice and get the good stuff.
twitter will have to develop normal advertising or take on the power of Google. In the meantime, you can tweet with your friends or email them. If the demographics of your customer base is very young, you can get text messages quickly to them via twitter and post things on facebook too. Remember you have to find them first. Once you have them, you can be held hostage by a crank or spammed to 'death'.
If your customer base is mature, then forget about trying to get them to twitter on a big scale. For deep penetration into demographics Google is the best bet for all age groups, but it is expensive. twitter will be expensive too! Since both Google and Bing can index twitter accounts, what will twitter ads be worth in the future for small companies or individuals? Google email, called Gmail, already allows you to pass messages in either email or chat form. Microsoft has hotmail and Instant Messenger, that is easier to handle and monitor, ditto for Yahoo.
We know one company which has a product with a 'short hand' name of 3 characters for their flagship offering. It costs them $250,000/year (paid to Google) to make sure that when people type in those 3 characters, their product shows up on the first page. They pay again when they get hits from their Google Adwords. If somebody tells you that they can get you on the first page of a Google search with no money, walk away.
Because of Google's and in the future Microsoft's Bing giant content rich search engines and server farms, they are in a position to dominate the directed Adword advertising. Your web site is still the best reflection of what you are selling. Don't think that social networking will lead to professional advertising. People still have to find your professional persona.
Using a well maintained email list and posting your ads on larger web sites with lots of hits is a better bet than opting for social networks for most companies. Adwords are expensive in the long run. Google gets most of their revenue from them and most of that revenue comes from big companies, who can afford it. Most of these companies maintain a large staff that does nothing but monitor the effectiveness of their Google Adwords and hits.
Keep in mind that twitter like communication takes two to tango. You have to be there to answer or it reverts to kind of an uncontrolled and limited email in an ever expanding and uncontrolled spider web. Is this superior to a well thought out email or for that matter using video conferencing with remote customers using Skype? ( facebook has incorporated Skype recently for other reasons. They want to keep you with them)
Continually adding function to these social network sites leads to a site that is hard to learn and use. If you want to use Skype, then go use it, don't bother finding it on facebook.
The bottom line is this. If your customers have a lot of time to twitter, which is doubtful, the next question is do you have the time to keep track of their needs?
The best form of online advertising gets you name recognition with your logo and something about you in front of the customer as much as possible. Repetition is King. They don't have to always hit on your logo, but they have to see it to remember it and it should represent in symbolic form, what you actually offer. Cute, quirky names are not good unless they give product recognition.
A great place to buy things on the net is Amazon.com (ca). They remember you and you can buy most anything now, not just books. Want to buy a Pan Flute? Buy it on Amazon.
For an example of what twitter is all about look at the bottom of this page to see a typical twitter stream. The subject was winter coats. As you can see, there is very little of use there for busy people. This is only a partial record .... it went on and on and on
Scrolling stops when you move your mouse inside the scroll area. You can click on the ads for more
Results for winter coats
BethanySalminen Bethany Salminen
I am already using my heaviest winter coats from Texas. And it's only mid October. This does not bode well.
l Lindsay Spoonmore
Johnny Depp pays for 500 winter coats, gives them to each member of the crew on the set of "Pirates of the Caribbean 4."
I love how dudes be lookin in the winter time. Scarves, pea coats, beanie hats, button ups, alla that...
I only like winter for the coats and not the SAD
Don't do that. Grab some kids winter coats, hats & mittens and donate them to kids who need them.
breaking out all my winter coats and putting away all my summer shirts. when did i get SO MANY coats?
Monica McQueen ♛
I have mixed feelings about having to wear a winter coat to work soon... I HATE that its so cold out, but my coats are sOo freakin cute! lol
Ppl walkin aroung with thick winter coats and scarfs on like it 36 degree. Its only 63! Its cool, not cold. And it actually feels good out
hehe..I love winter! Coats are coming out na! <3lol
66 degrees in Calufornia and more people in winter coats than shorts...
Why are all the cute coats down or have furry hoods? I really don't need another wool winter coat. Guys have it easy.
books, sports, movies ...
Thursday, October 21, 2010