Ok, so you’re right into Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and you’re getting in tune with industry blogs and forums. You’ve even got your own YouTube channel and you get alerts from Meetup on the latest local marketing events. But have you been missing something? There are many more social networks that you can use to connect with your peers, customers and clients.
There are hundreds of social networks that cater to different markets with new ones popping up every day, however, we don’t want to overwhelm you so we’ve pulled out 9 of our favourites.
- Google+ – You might have seen the “+1” symbol around the place, well this is a way to recommend something via Google’s social networking platform Google+. All you need to do is create a Google+ profile and choose who you want to connect and share with. When you share a page or post via “+1” it will post the article to your Google+ page where you can also start a conversation about it. With new features constantly bring added, Google+ is extremely popular and definitely here to stay.
- Pinterest – Pintrest is an online pinboard that gives you a way to organise and share pictures and other interesting things you come across on the web. You can also browse others pinboards for inspiration. Businesses are using it with great success, like Etsy who were one of the pioneer brands that thrived using this social network. If you have powerful visual content then check it out.
- Instagram – Instagram is a photo sharing application that enables the user to take a photo, apply a digital filter to alter it and then share it with others. You probably saw it hit the news recently when Instagram was sold to Facebook for $1 billion. There is an entire ecosystem of apps and services built on top of Instagram.
- StumbleUpon – StumbleUpon is a discovery engine, the idea is that when you come across or “stumble upon” great web pages and you like them, StumbleUpon will show you other things you might like. You can also see what others you follow have also liked. It’s a great way to discover new things on the web that you might not have found alone.
- Foursquare – Whilst there are other platforms that offer check-in capabilities, none of them really stack up to what Foursquare have developed with their location services. Users check-in when they visit places so they can share and save places that they’ve been. One of the highlights to Foursquare is the gamification where you unlock achievements along your travels. Foursquare also gives users personalised recommendations and deals. Businesses can make use of the Foursquare Merchant Platform to attract and engage with customers.
- StackExchange – StackExchange is social Question and Answer (Q&A) site, it was built by the developers of the hugely popular programmers Q&A site StackOverflow. StackExchange features a network of 88 question and answer sites on range of topics including technology, arts, business. Other popular Q&A sites include Quora and Yahoo! Answers.
- Geekli.st – Geekli.st is platform that allows geeks from around the world to discover, connect and share work they’ve done to get the credit that they deserve. It allows geeks the place to share links to useful resources, build connections and join communities. It’s definitely a tech focused social network but well worth a look if you’re a geek or if you’d like to see the cutting edge of social applications.
- Dribbble – If you are a designer then Dribbble (that’s 3 b’s) is the place for you, it is a social network of designers from a range of various fields. The online community share screenshots of what they’re working on like show and tell. It’s a great way for any designer to promote their work and also to explore other work for inspiration. Other design networks include deviantART and Forrst.
- App.net – This one is still in it’s infancy but definitely one to watch. The App.net developers are building a real time social feed without the ads. To them, users and developers come first and not advertisers. App.net raised more than $500,000 this year, fuelled by a backlash over Twitter placing restrictions on developers accessing their service.
If you’re a bit more of a sticky beak and want to know more about other social network sites you should checkout this useful list of social networks on Wikipedia.
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