I want to thank the Future of Real Estate Marketing
blog for giving us good info on these social networking sites.
Most know by now that Web 2.0 is not going away and it is here to stay. We humans are naturally social, and so even with the advent of theInternet where we can cloister ourselves away and order everything we need to live online, we still want that interaction with other humans. We want to feel the human touch.
Enter online communities.
According to Wikipedia, "a virtual community, e-community or online community is a group of people that primarily interact via communication media such as letters, telephone, email or Usenet rather than face to face, for social, professional, educational or other purposes."
Online communities have been around since the late 1980s (BBS anyone?), but they have proliferated in the last five years, and more continue to pop up on the horizon with the advent of the latest ideas and technologies.
Below are a few of the most popular communities online:
- This is a professional social networking site that is gaining ground fast. According to their website, "Linkedin is an online network of more than 20 million experienced professionals from around the world, representing 150 industries."
o How can I use this in my business? Contacts, baby!
- This is a do-it-yourself social networking site. According to their website, "Our passion is putting new social networks in the hands of anyone with a good idea. With Ning, your social network can be anything and for anyone."
o Again with the contacts, but you can also be known as that genius on the specific topic of townhouses in Hoboken, NJ. Or wherever else.
- Facebook seems to be the slightly grown-up version of myspace.com. According to the Facebook website, "Users can join networks organized by city, workplace, school, and region to connect and interact with other people. People can also add friends and send them messages, and update their personal profile to notify friends about themselves."
o Making contacts is key to any business, isn't it? Just slap up your information, make some friends, and you just might sell property for someone you meet through the site.
- This is a bit different from the above three site. According to their website, Squidoo is a site "...designed to make it easy for anyone, for free, to set up a single page on a topic he or she knows or cares a lot about. Advertising revenue is shared with these content creators, and some of it is given to charity."
o Become the expert writer-slash-real estate guru when people begin to discover your squidoo page.
Why bother with online communities at all? We are all busy, so what is the importance of these sites? One word: eyeballs. Millions upon millions of people all over the world reside within these sites. They spend lots of time in them. If you had the chance to reach out and touch that many people, would you take the opportunity?
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