Good Friday morning. Our week dedicated to making a blog that matters has come down to its last day. With this week’s theme, it is my hope that some of you take steps towards a new writing career. That was where I started, and I have talked to many others who are starting the same way.
To wrap up our week I wanted to talk about some other ways to get traffic to your blog and to get your message out without sending a spam email to thousands of people you don’t know just hoping to get a few more readers. I want to tell how I got into the use of social networking and the people who helped me do it. It started back in 2005 when I found the MySpace website and learned I could host my own page. I was not sure what value this thing was; I just thought it was cool.
In 2008 my pastor at church, as a project for one of our sermon series, challenged us all to get on facebook and develop a conversation about what we were learning in the series. So it began. It was there that I was able to connect with everyone from family to old friends in the many different parts of the country. I was able to connect with one or two people I attended high school with and that led to information on our reunion. I tell all this because at that point the only vision I had for facebook was to connect with friends.
So in 2009, while working to expand an IT software company, I scheduled a meeting with an old friend. That friend, J.R. Atkins, said something really important. He said the best way to expand our business would be through social networks. All I knew about social networks at the time was facebook (which I used only for connecting with friends and family) and LinkedIn. I had heard of others, like Friendster, so I asked J.R.to explain to me the value of these social media in growing business and I was soon hooked. It didn’t take long for me to see the potential value in this media.
In 2010 when I was starting Rocker Life Coach, I participated in a webinar with Eve Mayer Orsburn. She mentioned the social network of Twitter. I expanded to that with a screen name of @rockerlifecoach. It gave me a platform to share, but I was still not sure how it was going to work.
Eve mentioned that I needed to create a page on LinkedIn as well. I did, but was not able to do much with it as it was a professional site and I was more in with the non-professional side; I was more focused on personal relationships with people.
It was not until I met the LinkedIn trainers, Mike O’Neil and Lori Ruff (the LinkedIn RockStar and LinkedIn Diva), that I began to see the potential in LinkedIn. Mike taught me how to set my page up to look the part for who I was and what I wanted to use if for. If you are connected with me on LinkedIn, you will see a change to my profile soon because Mike and Lori are in town on business and they are staying with us so we will be spending more time working together to improve my LinkedIn profile.
So that’s the short story of how I got into the different kinds social networks. Here is what I now use them for: I have a fan page on facebook and a Twitter account. I have a tool to tweet the title to my blog each day along with a link. It also tweets three times a day with old posts. I find three to four pictures and post these to give people motivation and hope in life. I use all networks to share small quotes and motivational sayings each day.
My strategy is to offer people helpful information for free, then offer them a chance to find out more with links to my blog page where they will find further opportunities to link to other helpful sites. These great tools create a network of tweeted ads for me.
It’s a great thing when you help someone and they tell you that you helped; but it’s better when others use these tools to share your message with their friends. Through these networks people are putting together groups of friends and acquaintances, making chat boards, as a group of us recently did so we could talk and prepare for the memorial service for our friend Curt when he passed in a bike wreck a few months back. Our speaker’s group and other network groups all connect through facebook groups.
Social networks are a tool and using the tool to help build a business like mine is a great thing. You get to pass on those positive things in life and share your writing with others when you want to get the word out.
That brings our week to a close. You can find out more about these social media tools and how they can help you connect. J.R. Atkins helps train others to use social media. Eve Mayer Orsburn has a social media company that helps others by showing them the many ways they can use social media in their businesses. You can connect with Mike and Lori at Integrated Alliances. They work with large companies training their employees on how to use LinkedIn effectively.