Establishing Your Personal Brand on Niche Social Networks

eBrandPersonal BrandingSocial Media

Have an expertise? There’s a social network for that.

There’s a lot of hype around the “Big 3” – Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. But what about niche social networks?

If you’re an expert in it, there’s a social network for it

From shopping (Kaboodle) to knitting (Ravelry) to movies (Flixster) and everything in between, there’s like at least one social network devoted to your area of expertise that’s just a Google search away.

There’s even a new social networking site – Zaang – that allows you to create your own “World” about your topic of choice. (Disclaimer: Zaang is a client, but I truly believe in their product.) Are you a Web designer? They’ve got it. Social media guru? Check. And what they don’t already have, you can begin on your own. For example, I just started the World of Internships & Entry-Level Jobs, and look forward to answering people’s questions!

Don’t “spray and pray”

Just like when you’re searching for a job, quality trumps quantity. “Spraying and praying,” or sending your cover letter and résumé to as many companies as you can simply because they may or may not have an opening that you may or may not qualify for, is just not the best way to job search. The same is true when using social networks to build your brand.

It’s fairly easy to go nuts and join tons of social networking sites when you’re first getting your name out there. Be selective. Know how much time you have to devote to social networking, and choose the networks you join and participate in accordingly.

Don’t be all business

Sure, you’re trying to build your brand and possibly sell a product and/or service, but don’t be all business all the time. Have some fun! You can’t know everything about your area of expertise, so ask questions once in a while. Volunteer to arrange in-person social events. You get the idea.

The rules are the same

No matter what social network you’re on, big or niche, the rules don’t change: listen, be relevant, mind your brand, engage, and give more than get.