Let's face it. For many of us, the learning curve for implementing emerging technologies into our business can be a rather daunting and intimidating venture. For old dogs like me, it can tend to be very frustrating and insurmountable at times. Although we recognize the value and benefits of blogging, and utilizing the wealth of social media tools available today, it's just a tad bit challenging to wade through everything that's out there!
Maybe you're relatively new to ActiveRain, and you're thinking that there is just too much stuff to absorb! You feel like you're trying to take a drink from a fire hydrant! You're on information OVERLOAD!
Well, Bucko, it's time to take a step back, re-group, and map out an easy and effective 'step-by-step' SMO (Social Media Optimization) strategy for your business!
Fortunately, the ActiveRain Community provides an excellent and encouraging environment for you to begin your social media journey. Allow me to suggest a few basic 'baby' steps that will make the process more enjoyable:
Perfecting Your Profile
Taking the time and effort to develop a comprehensive and 'complete' profile that is informative and engaging to your readers is a vital first step. Check out the profiles of ActiveRain's Top Scoring members to get some seasoned 'How-To' ideas. For some additional tips, check out these helpful links:
One of the best ways to become fully immersed in the blogging fray is to simply read other people's articles/posts, and make meaningful contributions/comments to the conversation. Develop the daily discipline of making comments. Weave it into the fabric of your regular routine. Make it part of your morning coffee ritual. You'll find that you will learn some really great insights and advice from your fellow professionals and you'll begin to develop some lasting relationships with other bloggers who will typically reciprocate with comments to your posts. Plus, it's one of the easiest ways to earn points on ActiveRain!
Regular Reading - Featureds and Subscription List
Part of your daily disciplined Rain ritual should be to peruse the 'Featured' posts on the Blogs Main Page. The default category setting is 'Professional,' so simply click on the 'Featured' link up at the top left of the page, and it will pull up the most recently 'Featured' articles. These represent some of the Best of the Best within our community. These posts are selected by both ActiveRain staff and volunteer moderators as reflecting prime examples of quality writing. You will be able to learn what constitutes good effective blogging from these examples. When you discover an author that you particularly enjoy, be sure to 'Subscribe' to their blog by clicking on the 'Subscribe to Blog' button located just under their profile picture. Whenever they publish a new article, they will show up on your 'Subscription List,' located on the right hand side of the Blogs Main Page.
Getting Your Blogging Feet Wet
After you've spent an inordinate amount of time becoming an experienced 'Lurker,' the day will finally come when you will gather up the courage to step out into the imposing sea of blogging and bare your soul naked to the world! Well, it's not quite THAT bad, but it sure feels like it! You only need to peer briefly into the early archives of any accomplished blogger to realize that most of us start out with pretty much the same basically ugly and boring content. Finding your own unique voice and style can take some time. Don't be too hard on yourself. Put yourself in the shoes of your intended audience, and simply share what would be most interesting, engaging, and beneficial to them. Here's some additional helpful resources:
Expanding Your Digital Footprint
After you've achieved a certain comfort level with your involvement here on ActiveRain, there will come a time for you to spread your social media/networking wings and begin to participate on other meaningful platforms that will serve to effectively expand your digital footprint. There are so many networks and tools available these days that it can become somewhat difficult and confusing to determine which ones can offer the best return on your time investment. Some are very obvious, and others may take extra time for your to realize the value proposition. Allow me to suggest just a few:
One Tool at a Time
The amount of really amazing social media tools and technologies that are available to us today are incredible and rather overwhelming. Pace yourself and try not to bite off too many new widgets than you can chew at one time. Most of them are free or have expanded/enhanced features available for a modest subscription fee. As you are evaluating new tools/technology to implement into your business, remember that they should be relatively easy to use, and save you time/effort. If technology doesn't make your life/job easier, less stressful, and more productive, then find another widget that makes more sense! Here's a few to consider:
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Rich Jacobson is a licensed real estate professional providing knowledgeable empowerment and relentless representation for his clients of residential properties and vacant land throughout all of Kitsap County WA and portions of Pierce, Mason, and Jefferson Counties. You can also find him at KitsapLife.com, SOUNDBITEBLOG and Crabbing in the Hood, or e-mail: email@example.com