How many social networks are you on? I’m on an excess of 20. I’m not active on all of them, mind you, but I do like to try things out. If I had more time or could get caught up on things, I would certainly spend a little more time on some of them.
I like to keep up on things and try them out or at least see what all the fuss is about, so let’s go through them shall we? We’ll do so in alphabetical order, because it’s only logical.
I’ve written about Clammr before and, for sure, I will write about it again. Clammr is a way to share audio clips from your favorite podcasts up to 24 seconds at a time. It is by far one of my favorite platforms. And as an added bonus I get to share these clips across other social media platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook. For podcasters and podcast superfans, I believe this network is a must!
Art is subjective, and on deviantART there is quite a lot that could be discussed, but there is no argument that many of the users have talent. Whether it be in a physical medium, with a camera, or on a digital canvas, I do enjoy getting lost in the fray. Occasionally, I try my own hand, but I’m on here more as a fly on the wall.
Disqus is the platform I have chosen to utilize for commenting on this blog, but it classifies as a social media because you can have a profile and see what others are commenting on.
One of the more recent additions to this list is Ello. I’ve only played around a little bit, and it reminds me of a mix of Tumblr and Pinterest. While I do see the merits of it, I need to spend a little more time playing around before I decide how valuable it really is.
Facebook was not the first social media I was on, but it’s still one of the standards. And while I don’t post on the page nearly as often as I should, I understand that some people are only on Facebook and I don’t want to ignore them.
If I had more time, I’d like to get back into my old love of photography with Flickr. While I don’t do much, there is always the possibility I’ll put more stuff on there. It’s also, like deviantArt, a place to get lost in the talents of other people. You might even find a photographer or two or 10 to follow.
I really enjoy Google+, but I don’t spend much time on it. I did for a while, but I admittedly couldn’t generate the same kind of community I could elsewhere. That said, as long as it exists, which is until Google decides to let it go the way of many of its other experiments, I will continue to check in and play around.
I will be the first to admit I don’t post on Instagram as much as I should, but I do enjoy the platform. Every once in awhile I do post in bunches, but I hope to make it less hit-and-miss and much more consistent…
Issuu is a digital magazine stand that I fell in love with for a while before I realized I didn’t have the time to read all those magazines. That being said, I still check it out every so often. For those who enjoy magazines, you too should check it out.
If you enjoy lists and losing a few hours, ListGeeks is the platform you are looking for. I haven’t been on recently, because – really – who has the time, but I do plan on getting back into it. It’s a fun way to easily compile and compare lists of anything you can think of with other users.
Outside of podcast-listening applications, Mixlr is a must for all podcast fans. I’ve spent a lot of time not only in the chat room for live shows but also moderating chat rooms for shows as well. It truly is the most interactive you’ll get when listening to your favorite podcast that uses the platform. Get on Mixlr and then listen and chat. And if your favorite podcast isn’t doing live shows here, tell them about it or ask them to. It’s a much different experience, even when compared to “listen and tweeting.”
I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not the biggest fan of automation, but when it comes to sharing stuff and promoting friends, I see the benefits of it with Paper.li. It takes into consideration the people I follow on Twitter, as well as what I tweet, retweet, and favorite to compile a daily paper. It helps to do some of the promotion automatically that I would have to do myself if I could just find the time.
I don’t Periscope like I should or even could, but I do enjoy watching my friends and their exploits, when they go live. It’s a great way to keep in touch with those closest to me that aren’t physically nearby.
Pinterest is probably one of the more “addicting” platforms that I am a part of. Every pin can lead you to more pins, every connection and board to more connections and boards. I didn’t “get it” at first, but you have to dive in to really understand it, and I have and I’m in.
Scribd is a platform for reading books. I toyed around but never really got hooked for the same reason that my Kindle is collecting dust. I still prefer the “old school” style of reading by physically holding the book in my hand and turning the pages. That said, there is quite the library of independent titles, so I’m sure you’ll find something of interest. It’s also a place where you can upload your own stuff for public consumption. But for me, that’s what this blog is for at the moment.
Not many people would classify Skype as a social media, but I do. It is how I generally produce and appear on podcasts, as well as its primary function as a means of communication for behind-the-scenes planning. Sure, you can call someone, but it’s much easier to Skype with five or more people than to figure out who has conference calling and that whole rigamarole.
Snapchat is another one on the list. I never really understood. Call me less progressive because I just don’t get it, or maybe I just don’t have the community around me utilizing it to make it worthwhile, but it just doesn’t seem to be my thing.
The most guilty pleasure on this list is StumbleUpon. I do utilize this to add my blog posts to the network, but I also pour hours stumbling random sites I’d never find otherwise. This is not for the meek: unlike other sites, it is so much easier to lose a few hours here without really knowing you have until you finally look at the time.
Tumblr, like StumbleUpon is another one of these sites where you can lose yourself. I enjoy sharing and posting here as the sense of community here is rivaled only by Twitter or Facebook. I am by no means a power user, but I’ve found that it is almost as inclusive a network as Twitter.
By far my favorite platform of all, and the one I utilize most frequently is Twitter. The communities that I have found based on similar interests has led to genuine friendship. The conversation never ends and, for the most part, it’s usually positive. For Twitter, I primarily use Tweetdeck to keep track of everything going on in my various circles.
Lastly, another platform I don’t use very much which is Vine. I have more of a words-and-still photographs personality, but I do dabble with video from time to time.
Now, obviously, I’m not on all of these sites as a consistent user. But I do see the value in all of them, even if it just isn’t for me. Additionally, I have learned that there is something to be said for at least attempting them all. After all, in tech, you never know what the next new thing will be, and more importantly, what it will be built upon.
Do I suggest you jump in wholly to all of these? No, because that’s not what I did. You can see that I have much more time for some than I do others, too. But I do suggest you try your hand or at least play around. You never know which ones will have the community you’re looking for or the connections you might not know exist.
As all of these networks change algorithms and features, I like to keep an eye on them to see if any are worth revisiting. That also has a lot to do with where your community or audience is.
Marketing, like social media, is ever-changing. Now, Twitter may be primarily used by me for communication, but it is also one of the major forms I use to market myself. Will that always be the case? Probably not.
Is there ever a system? Not that I’ve found. I have a profile on more networks than the average person, but I never know which one will take off or be right for me until I test the waters.
As for deciding what works and what doesn’t… Sometimes, I just go with my gut and sometimes it’s trial and error. Social media is better if there’s more people engaged, and you might just be able to bring some of your existing friends into the next new platform, or at least the next platform new to you.
Let me know what social networks you’re on. Are there any missing from my list that I should check out? Are there any that you are on, that you feel could better benefit me as a more involved user? Let me know. I’m open to suggestion as I continue to search for balance.
Good luck and don’t be afraid to guess wrong. It happens to everyone.