I was asked in one of my Ebay groups to put a little something together about social networking and how it has affected my business platform. Well, all I can say is that it is definitely worth the time and energy that is put into it.
I am on several networking sites. They include Myspace, facebook, twitter, pulse, blogger, plurk, ning, linked in, friendster, squidoo, yahoo groups, ebay groups, ebay blogs, youtube, blog talk radio, top 100 sites, and seller circle. That is one heck of a list huh?!? I think I may have missed one or two! Let me take this opportunity to let you know why I have put myself out there as I have.
The most places you put your name / store / self, the more chances of someone running into you that may not have otherwise. Myspace opens the possibility of having millions of people run across you page..or maybe even billions..lol! You literally may get your product out to so many people. You have the space (page) to sell yourself, be personable, while also being professional. Show pics, make the page unique, show the possible client that you are the person to buy stuff from. Check out my myspace page at http://www.myspace.com/naughtyandnicelingerie to see what I am talking about. Myspace has loads of resources and support to really make your page stand out, even if you do not know HTML. And, if you don't know HTML, but want to learn the basics, you can easily google html basic resources and all the info will be right at your finger tips. Myspace has blogs, comments, status updates, groups and so much more. It is there own little community.
Twitter is a mini blog site...you can give people tidbits of things about your products, with the help of http://www.tinyurl.com to help you showcase your item but still remain within character limit. You send little messages to other "twits" to chat, network, and just have fun!
Pulse, linked in and squidoo are more stagnate sites..at least by my experience. It not as interactive as Myspace or twitter, but you can set up profiles and send messages to other community members. Squidoo lets other members rate your site and pays you having other members click on ads through your page! How great is that!
Yahoo groups, ebay groups and ebay blogs are all more interactive communities I joined. I chat it up in the groups, exchange ideas and experiences, help other sellers and have fun as well. Blogs (any blogs along with blogger) are where you can share ideas as well...and even specific information on your product. For example, I blog about special offers, bra care tips and so on. It's a great place to show how knowledgeable you are about your items! I use ebay blogs and groups especially, because there is the community I can really market to (since I do have an Ebay store) and are looking to spend money as well! They are already registered members, so all you have to do is sell them!
Youtube is another great site...it is like a video blog! Again, you can make a mini commercial, showcasing your store, or instructions on items you sell..to make your buyer feel comfortable buying your item! Blog talk radio is probably one of the most interactive of them all. You can actually call into a radio show and have customers talk to you live on the air..and they can really "hear" how personable the seller is. So it is not just buying a product over some cable wires..but actually feeling like you know the person. I personally have been interviewed on two VTR shows. My links are on the side under my networking sites here on my blog.
One more site that I have heard success stories from, but have not put too much time into is Craigslist! You can list something and watch to see what happens. All of these avenues have given me success in one way or another. Don't underestimate the power of networking sites! I do not pay for advertising at all. While I do not discourage it, because you have to spend money to make it, I concentrate on these avenues to cut that cost..not that it cuts my time on the internet though..lol! You have to weigh the pros and the cons for yourself. Everything you do is a personal decision to make things work for you.
OK..I think I covered most of them...some are self explanatory and I know I wrote enough to keep you busy a bit..lol. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Most of these sites let you personalize the page you have, so you can check out all my sites, which are also linked through my Ebay "me" page or the sidebar here, to actually see my work in action. There are so many more out there..but these keep me pretty busy for now. So much to do, so little time! LOL