One of the greatest tools of communication, growing widely in the past 5 years or so, is a part of the internet called: Social Networking.
Social Networking is a social network service focuses on building online communities of people who share interests and/or activities, or who are interested in exploring the interests and activities of others. Most social network services are web based and provide a variety of ways for users to interact, such as e-mail and instant messaging services.
Social networking has created new ways to communicate and share information. Social networking
websites are being used regularly by millions of people, and it now seems that social networking will be an enduring part of everyday life. The main types of social networking services are those which contain directories of some categories (such as former classmates), means to connect with friends (usually with self-description pages), and recommended systems linked to trust. Popular methods now combine many of these, with MySpace and Facebook being the most widely used
There are a lot of social networking sites, and even more Business Networking sites, bringing together professional communities, to share ideas, concepts and other relevant information.
Business networks been around for many years, such as BNI and Chambers of Commerce, however the online networks are very powerful in bringing together professionals from around the globe, to connect and share information. It is truly – a Global Village!
Recent statistic have shown, that 83% of recruiters used search engines to learn more about
candidates in 2007, up from 75% in 2005, according to Execunet.com.
43% eliminated candidates based on the search results.
What does it mean? I think it is quite simple – if people want to know more about you, they’ll look you up on Google!
it could be your future employer (in my case it was my ex-employer who suspected I was involved in “extra curriculum” activities), or your future (or existing) spouse, or their family!!
The more information people find online, the better!
In most cases, you can control what people find about you. and you can do that by joining Social and/ or business network, and expose the parts of your life you want people to find out about. In the “Glitz and Glamor” world they use a spotlight, or an angle to showcase what they want you to see.
OK, so what do I do? where to start?
- Start by deciding who you are, and what is it that you do, and you want people to know about:
If you are a small business owner, you might want to get people’s attention to your business, to create business opportunities for your self.
If you are passionate about bird migration routes, you may want to talk to other people who share your passion, and maybe one day go meet them in person, where ever they are in the world!
You may be a home maker, with a Teddybear collection, and you’d like to exchange information about garage sales with great potential, or new designs to make a bear.
2. Once you’ve decided Who you are and What is it that you’re passionate about, set up a profile that best showcases your self, and your passion. Put together a Bio (short for Biography), that extenuates your skills, experience and direction.
3. Register on the appropriate networks, and upload your Bio.
4. Most networks will help you to find your friends who already using the network, and encourage you to invite your other friends along.
Whatever it is that you do, or interested in, there is a good chance you would find a pal online, in a social, or business networking website.
There are also great ways to communicate with your existing friends around the country, or the world, share your thoughts, ideas, pictures, videos – as much or as little as you want to share.
But what about my privacy????
Another FANTASTIC question!
No easy answer here either. The truth is, once you “go public”, you are giving away part of your privacy – people can now search (online) and find you!
But, and this is a BIG But: you can now control what you want people to find, and you could also control (with privacy settings) who can see what information: some sites will have very low, if not no-online presence, like dating sites, or restricted networking sites.
Others, like MySpace, Facebook, and LinkedIn, will have great Googebility (presence in Google – to make sure people will find you). If you’re new to this world, it is a good idea to seek advice (Try Google :))
If you’re serious about Getting Noticed, and you think it will be beneficial for you professionally, check out Mr Personal Branding, and he could help.
Alternatively, just contact me directly.