By Darin L. Hammond
I found recently that I have been snubbing certain social networks, in need of a new attitude. I had narrowly approached sharing across unique platforms, sticking primarily to the big four - Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and LinkedIn. If you're not already using them, I recommend you do.
However, people are using a lot of other tools to spread their information, usually in unique ways, drawing a different user than the big four. I’ll share with you the research I performed as I broadened my social networks.
The criteria I used in selecting my resources included: ease of sharing blog posts, quality and quantity of contact the pool, and simplicity of finding new stranger, friends. I considered it a plus if the site has a bookmarklet I can use for sharing.
Some of the services I list below are quite young, but in these cases, their youth has been an asset, as I find the people I interact with seem more willing to engage, and it’s easier to find a little spotlight. In every resource I list, the “easy sharing” qualification is met.
StumbleUpon--this tool has an amazing search algorithm and a unique way of directing impressive traffic your way, people willing to be guided to your site.
RebelMouse--still a baby and below the radar, but a powerful way to share, extremely fast if you grab the bookmarklet. A big traffic pull.
Reddit--an eclectic group of readers who actually enjoy reading. Kind of strict rules, but once you learn them, you are set.
SpringPad--a new service with easy sharing of bookmarks to your content, and it captures images as well. The bookmarklet makes it fast and easy.
Chime.In--another relatively new service and a terrific place to communicate with lots of new people. It is organized nicely around interests that you select. A fun place to hang out and meet new folks.
Delicious--quick way to share content with their bookmarklet.
Digg--currently being remodeled by new owners, but when it’s back up, a powerful resource geared mainly towards hard news, but accepting of other topics.
Friend Feed It--a new resource, but a powerful distribution tool with a bookmarklet. You can share content as well as images.
Scoop It!--a content curation platform that has a great sharing tool. If you're not familiar with curation, it's definitely one to look into as curation grows increasingly popular.
A Unique Sharing Tool
AddThis--with this service, you don’t add any content. However, AddThis has an awesome assortment of sharing tools with sharp icons that allow you to share with more than 300 other services, pretty much all you could wish for. They offer an analytics tool and free toolbar as well.
The Right Way to Share
All of these services work effectively if you are willing to dive into the community. They only function if you develop networks within them, comment on other posts, and interact with members of the community. If you have the time to do that, these are awesome tools for your social media marketing.