Social Media Websites You Need to Know as a Business
Collected by Martin Brossman – (919) 847-4757 Facebook: http://BrossmanOnFB.com

Source: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia http://en.wikipedia.org c2010 Wicipedia with exception of the inSideAreaCodes write up by Martin Brossman.  All these sites offer full service free levels of membership.

Social media are media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Social media uses web-based technologies  to turn communication into interactive dialogues. Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein define social media as “a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, which allows the creation and exchange of user-generated content.”[1] Businesses also refer to social media as consumer-generated media (CGM). Social media utilization is believed[who?] to be a driving force in defining the current time period as the Attention Age[citation needed]. A common thread running through all definitions of social media is a blending of technology and social interaction for the co-creation of value.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_media

is a social network service and website launched in February 2004 that is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc.[1] As of July 2010[update] Facebook has more than 500 million active users,[6] which is about one person for every fourteen in the world.[7][N 1]  Users may create a personal profile, add other users as friends and exchange messages, including automatic notifications when they update their profile. Additionally, users may join common interest user groups, organized by workplace, school, or college, or other characteristics. The name of the service stems from the colloquial name for the book  given to students at the start of the academic year by university administrations in the US with the intention of helping students to get to know each other better. Facebook allows anyone who declares themselves to be at least 13 years old to become a registered user of the website.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facebook

Facebook Wall: A place where “Friends” and you can post comment, pictures, links or video. The idea came from the small bulletin board  outside many dorm rooms in college where you may post things or your friends can.

Twitter is a website, owned and operated by Twitter Inc., which offers a social networking and microblogging service, enabling its users to send and read other users’ messages called tweets. Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters displayed on the user’s profile  page. Tweets are publicly visible by default, however senders can restrict message delivery to their friends list. Users may subscribe to other author tweets—this is known as following and subscribers are known as followers. As of late 2009, users can follow lists of authors instead of just following individual authors.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter

YouTube is a video-sharing website on which users can upload, share, and view videos. Three former PayPal employees created YouTube in February 2005.[3]    The company is based in San Bruno, California, and uses Adobe Flash Video technology to display a wide variety of user-generated video content, including movie clips, TV clips, and music videos, as well as amateur content such as video blogging and short original videos. Most of the content on YouTube has been uploaded by individuals, although media corporations including CBS, BBC, VEVO and other organizations offer some of their material via the site, as part of the YouTube partnership program.[4]   Unregistered users can watch the videos, while registered users are permitted to upload an unlimited number of videos. Videos that are considered to contain potentially offensive content are available only to registered users 18 and older. In November 2006, YouTube, LLC was bought by Google Inc. for $1.65 billion, and now operates as a subsidiary of Google.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Youtube

LinkedIn (pronounced /ˌlɪŋkt.ˈɪn/) is a business-oriented social networking site. Founded in December 2002 and launched in May 2003,[2] it is mainly used for professional networking. As of 9 August 2010, LinkedIn had more than 75 million registered users, spanning more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.[3] The site is available in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.[4] Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linkedin

inSideAreaCodes (first one was inSide919) is a free micro-business and small business networking site that lets businesses build business allies with other businesses in their area, grouped by their area code. It is 100% transparent to Google, allowing for a way to produce local content that can be viewed by anyone. This open system allows a business to increase its local web presence at no cost, but you must be a member to comment on a post. Since the people of a small business are often the best competitive advantage they have, inSideAreaCodes requires that you sign up under your real name and use a real picture (there is a separate place for your business name by your picture). All the inSideAreaCodes.com are built on the Ning platform (see following definition from Wickipedia). See http://www.inSideAreaCodes.com to find one near you or to see the founding group: http://www.inSide919.com

Ning is an online platform for people to create their own social networks,[3] launched in October 2005.[1] Ning was co-founded by Marc Andreessen and Gina Bianchini. Ning is Andreessen’s third company (after Netscape and Opsware). The word “Ning” is Chinese for “peace” (simplified Chinese: 宁; traditional Chinese: 寧; pinyin: níng), as explained by Gina Bianchini on the company blog.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ning_(website).

Connect with Martin Brossman on Facebook at http://BrossmanOnFB.com
Learn more about Small Business Training and Chambers of Commerce Trainning at www.SBCSpeakers.com or his Business training at www.ProNetworkingOnLine.com

Facebook for BusinessGreat Resources for Small Businesses in North Carolina:  Small Business Centers

Are you considering starting a business?

Are you a small business owner that would like more business?

Do you have a business running but find it hard to find and afford resources to really build your business?

If you answered yes to either question, take a moment and imagine the existence of a remarkable resource center, right in your local area, one that offers you free or very affordable high-quality support. You can go there for help with creating your business; building your business or selling your business. No business it too small or too large to gain access to the resources offered.  Instead of having to locate and pay for high-quality training for yourself and employees, this center makes it easy to attend ongoing training tailored to your business needs. And, to your delight, the center is staffed with highly- trained consultants who are well-networked with community resources all over the state.

If you haven’t already discovered it, this “imaginary” resource center exists in North Carolina, and there are 58 of them from mountains to coast.  They are called Small Business Centers (SBC), part of the Community College System and supported by your tax dollars—truly an investment in the economic development of businesses in the state.  They are “right in our backyard” and all you have to do is show up and take advantage of them!

I have been training in Small Business Centers since 2006 and have been moved and inspired by the wonderful people who have attended my classes. One man who invented a unique machine for bailing pine straw was using his website to successfully sell the several thousand dollar device across the country.  Another man, who had lost his job, was building a business helping children’s book authors speak in high schools, as well as making their books available to schools online. A director of a center doing wonderful work with children with disabilities found a way to sell donated items on eBay that allows the non-profit center to expand its services .And in one rural area I had the privilege of teaching conflict management skills to a room full of managers who oversee large farms; discussing real world problems and finding real world solutions. It’s wonderful to see the greatness of our communities at work.

Through teaching at various Community College locations, I have gotten to know the talented SBC Directors who bring an abundance of personal experience and networked resources to everything they do.  They not only have connections in your community to help you, but also have access to all 58 SBC networks. They have connections with the local Chamber of Commerce and many other contacts they draw on to help you with your business success.

At every SBC I have been to, they have a rich resource center with books, CD’s, government resource publications and often computers loaded with software that you can use for your business. These centers are free for your use and provide tools for planning, research, cash flow projections and budget analysis.

One director told me how he has had the opportunity of helping an individual create a machinist business, aid in staff development as the employees grew, and is now assisting them with landing a major aerospace contract. Another director mentioned how someone came to her to start a greenhouse. She did not have a local resource to help so she used her statewide resources and found a greenhouse business in another area that was successful and able to help this new business. A local bed-and- breakfast got networked through the Small Business Center to work with other bed-and-breakfasts in other areas of the state to help each other.

I want to list a few of the great resources just waiting for you to take advantage of them:

  • Confidential one-on-one and group business counseling. Including advisory councils to help businesses learn from other businesses.
  • Free or low-cost seminars to help start new businesses to get going in the right direction.
  • Resources to help existing businesses with personal issues, hiring, motivation, product development, pricing, competitive analysis, market – product and customer retention.
  • A massive network of contacts and information to address just about any questions a business has, as well as helping the business know the right questions to ask.
  • Assistance from SBC Directors in finding financing resources for your business with their contacts in the community and around the state.

If you want to keep a competitive advantage, you can’t afford not to use the Small Business Center in your area.  If you gain value from these resources, be sure to tell a friend.  The win-win goal we can all help achieve is to increase the community usage of the SBC classes and resources.  It is vital for the Centers to operate at full capability to help keep the funding strong and our communities vibrant. Find out what your SBC has to offer, get involved and let them know how they can help you.  If you have not been to a Small Business Center in NC, or not been in a while, you can find the one in your area at:  www.sbcn.nc.gov

Do you have a story of being helped by a Small Business Center?  Let us know for a future article.

Looking forward to hearing your stories of success!
Martin Brossman
Senior Instructor at NCSmallBusinessTraining.com 

(919) 847-4757
See all my training and coaching at: ProNetworkingOnLine.com and CoachingSupport.com
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