Create a social media strategy.
Which specific social media platforms you use will depend on your niche and your audience. Basic rule of thumb? You need to hang out where your audience does.
Here are five social media hangouts almost every blogger should use.
If you’re blogging about kids or puppies, you don’t need LinkedIn to reach your target audience. However, if your blog is part of your portable career strategy, a LinkedIn presence is a necessity. Yes, LinkedIn is smaller than some of the other social platforms, but it’s the one social media platform that’s exclusively for business.
Joining is super easy.
- Go to http://www.linkedin.com/
- Fill out your first and last name, password and email
- Click “Join Now
Once you have an account, you need to create your profile. We’ll walk through that in another post.
In the meantime, once you’ve joined, please invite me to connect with you — just let me know you’re a Future Expats reader. (You’ll find me here.)
You probably already have a Facebook account. If you don’t, get one. With almost a billion members worldwide, your niche doesn’t matter — you’ll find like-minded people on Facebook.
If you have a portable career, you should have a Facebook Page for your business as well as a personal page.
To get started on Facebook, point your browser to http://Facebook.com and provide your
- first and last name
- email (twice)
- birthday (they limit children’s usage so they want to know you’re over 18)
Press the “Sign Up” button and you’re in.
You can follow the Future Expats page on Facebook — in fact, pop in and say “hi.”
Ah, Twitter. You either love it or you hate it. But believe me, Twitter isn’t just for broadcasting to the world what you had for lunch.
Some people don’t get the 140-character mini-blog. Others, like Chris Brogan and Brian Clark, insist it’s the best social media platform for connecting with others and for sales.
It’s not as intuitive as some of the others, and it takes a while to get a feel for how really useful it is.
Twitter’s easy to join. All they need is your
- Full name
Once you’re on board, send me a tweet to introduce yourself at http://twitter.com/FutureExpat and I’ll start following you.
This is the new kid on the social media block. No, G+ doesn’t have as many members as Facebook or Twitter. But there’s a compelling, over arching reason you should have a presence: Google Search.
Google is the king of search, and as a blogger you need to be found. So if you want to rank well in Google Search get active on G+. It’s that essential.
If you already have a Google account because you use GMail, Calendar or any of their many other services, signing up for Google Plus just takes a second. Go to https://plus.google.com/up/start and Sign In with your Google account.
If you’re a new Googler, head on over to https://plus.google.com/up/start and select “Create an Account.”
They want a little bit more from you:
- First and last name
- A little captcha to prove you’re not a robot
Click the “Next Step” button and follow the instructions.
You’ll find my Google Plus profile here. Introduce yourself, let me know you’re an expat or future expat, and I’ll add you to my Expats circle!
Pinterest is another relatively new platform, but it’s growing fast.
Pinterest lends itself exceptionally well to creative endeavors — photography, art, crafts and design of all kinds. I’ve just started using it, so I can’t speak from a lot of experience, but I can see tremendous possibilities.
Pinterest works by invitation only, so joining has a couple of layers.
If you know someone with an account, you can ask them to send you an invite. (Leave a comment or send me an email and I’ll send you an invitation if you’d like.) Otherwise, go to http://pinterest.com/landing/ and fill in your email address to request an invitation. Once you receive it, follow the instructions to create your account.
Create a Profile
After you’ve joined any of these social networks, your next task is to create a profile. We’ll talk about that next time.
This is the 12th installment in our Blogging for Expats Tutorial Series. You can find the previous installments here.