Peter Shankman maybe?

Thanks to Web 2.0, you can communicate your business’s personality to the world. You can put a face to your logo, so even clients on the other side of the globe can feel a personal connection with you.

No one does this better than Social Media and PR Guru Peter Shankman. He founded a mailing list (called Help a Reporter Out, or HARO) that connects journalists looking for sources with PR pros, making life easier for everyone.

Perhaps the best part of the thrice-daily HARO emails, however, is Peter’s personal tidbit before the “queries”. He frequently posts links to his personal media profiles, letting the HARO crowd know about his adventures traveling around the country.

And if you want your business to be competitive in the next generation of the internet, you had better have a strong presence in these 3 crucial areas, just like Peter:

post

There’s a lot of buzz going around concerning the sudden use of social networking sites such as Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook to reach their constituents.

The House itself has rules about what platforms it’s members are permitted to discuss and post information on. One of the biggest players behind this cause is Texas Republican Representative, John Colberson.

So how beneficial to the cause of Congress are web utilities such as Twitter? In a time where a majority of the news is gathered on the Internet, this could be a powerful tool for members of Congress.

Not only can they provide their audience with information in record time, but the 140 character limit on “tweets” forces them to be short and to the point, putting the information in a language everyone can understand.

I’d imagine it would be pretty difficult to hold up a filibuster within 140 characters.

hey-you

The internet is already super-good at pointing you towards information you’re looking for. That’s why around 90% of all web users visit Youtube, Google, Yahoo or MSN on a daily basis.

But the next generation of online information gathering is recommendation.

That is, advanced websites and programs designed to serve you content that you don’t know you want.

No two sites do this better than Stumbleupon and Pandora.

Create a Social Networking Strategy

The awesome from Ignite Social Media wrote a great post about how to develop a social networking strategy.  To do so, she asks the following questions:

1) What networks are my target audiences interacting within?

2) What is the level of interaction my target audience is having within these networks?

3) What conversations already exist about our company? Within which networks?

4) What type of interactions do users have within each network?

5) What are other brands doing?

To me, all of these seem right on the money.

For instance, let’s say we are a hip new ringtone company targeting an audience between 16-23.  A large portion of this demographic would be found on Myspace.  Myspace users are notorious for heavily customizing their pages and they frequently interact with the network.

There may or may not be conversation about our brand – if not, no fret.  That’s why we’re developing this strategy!

Users either write private messages back and forth or post “comments” on each others pages.  How about introducing an application that allows users to send song clips to each others profiles?  We could brand it with our logo and a link to our ringtone site and watch the users pour in.  Or perhaps we could give users an incentive to place a banner on their Myspace page – maybe a free ringtone?

Lastly, an important thing to do would be to watch what other brands are doing, particularly our ringtone competitors.  If they come out with a cool new way to let users interact with their brand, we would have to one-up them, so to speak.  We can’t afford to let other companies have the “cooler” brand or else we risk losing our customers.

All in all, these were great points made by Lisa and I encourage you to head over and check out her full post as well as the discussion in the comments.  This information will be extremely valuable to you in your quest to create a social networking strategy.