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Significant Innovation since Internet is Social Networking & Web 2.0

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If you want to see a real disruptive innovation since the Internet, get ready for Social Networking and Web 2.0

If you are completely new to Social Networking , go check it out now. If you are a visual learner like me, then you can watch this simple video on YouTube as well:

For example Linked-In is one of my favorite Social Networking sites. There are plenty of others such as FaceBook, MySpace, etc. You will be surprised how many Fortune 1000 companies have pages on these sites. These trends are currently turning the industrial marketing complex upside down. If you have not figured out a way to leverage these new innovations to grow your business, to find talent, to generate leads, your business is about to hit the wall in a very near future.

For example Linked-In is one of my favorite Social Network. I spend hours and hours on it every week. Here is a post from a great Blogger Mickael Nadeau who has summarized the benefits of LinkedIn on his Blog:

  • LinkedIn is a social network where you can interact freely with millions of people;
  • Like other social networks, it relies on viral marketing to grow: you basically invite your contacts to join your network and are, in return, granted to contact theirs;
  • What differentiates LinkedIn from other platforms is that it is primarily intended for businessmen and professionals, recruiters and job seekers… So, you won’t be able to post a picture of your dog there;
  • You can think of it as a virtual board of commerce;
  • It is very straightforward and easy to use.

And some advantages…

o It’s quicker. You don’t have to travel the country to attend conferences, lunches and never ending meetings to get acquainted with people. It is there and full of activity 24/7, no matter why you need it.

o It’s international. Want to speak with a decision maker in India, China or London? No problem: it’s just a matter of a few clicks. A lot of people around the world will learn about you and what you do without ever spending a dime.

o It’s useful. On LinkedIn, you have access to many of the best experts on any given subject. I have had some of my questions answered very intelligently within 2 minutes. In fact, that is how I came to use WordPress for this Blog.

o It’s profitable. There are a lot of leads and opportunities to be discovered on this network. Build your business and your connections at the same time!

o It’s free. Most of us wouldn’t invest in our own personal branding. Because of its scale and because its free, this tool could give you a real competitive advantage when branding your name and accomplishments.

Once you create a LinkedIn account, the best way of grow it is to leverage your current network (which should be growing everyday if you are looking at your new connections everyday already) with the capacity of time and resources you have to devote to growing it. If you are a recruiter for a firm, it might be ok to grow it for the sake of growing it. But if you are like me, using LinkedIn to find leads or find knowledge, quality of contacts are much more important.

So, I suggest you declare your ‘network growth strategy’ first. Once you know this, do everything possible to find update your profile to support that strategy, then answer every questions and pose every question that supports that strategy, and then to open meaningful conversations using external tools (your CRM system, Outlook, Blogs, Company Website, etc.). More qualitative conversations you are having in Linked-In and outside of Linked-In, you will grow your network and achieve your ‘network growth strategy’. 

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