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Ginger Marin, Bionic Lady, Journalist, Actor, Author

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Social Networking Websites and Cross Promotion

by Ginger Marin

Okay, so you have a web site already and it looks nice and you’re satisfied it’s going to bring in visitors for you. Well, it probably will, but there’s more you could be doing and you could be doing it for just the cost of your time. Here’s a smart marketing tip: it’s called cross-promotion and here’s an easy and free way to do it.

Take advantage of social networking websites where you can build free websites and profiles to enhance your visibility and link back to your original site. Of course, if you don’t already have a website, you could build one effectively, in most cases for free, or maybe just for the cost of domain name registration, by using social networking websites.

Obviously you’ll want to find one that offers the best features so that you can network, cross-promote and thus showcase yourself or your business. Some social media websites allow you to sell products or services in addition to offering video sharing, photo galleries, blogs and forums. They’re all designed for easy communication among friends, new or old. Another advantage of joining good social networking websites is that they can also help members find a job or establish business contacts through free classified advertising.

No matter what you’re trying to promote: yourself, your business or an organization, when building your social networking website, remember to include important keywords and phrases when describing your site. If you’re a business make sure you select the most appropriate business category for your site.

The best social networking websites will also have the best search results so their members and visitors can locate you easily and quickly. Free promotion is worth its weight in gold whether you’re an individual promoting your talents or interests or a business selling products or an organization promoting an important message. Social networking websites are great sources to maximize your cross promotion potential.

Author Ginger Marin is an actor, freelance writer and storyteller.  You can also find her on Google+

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Social Networking Websites – Smart & Simple Etiquette

by Ginger Marin

Social networking websites introduce people to new friends thus expanding their circles of online pals and even business acquaintances. But they are also introducing people to a number of important etiquette issues. Some people haven’t figured out yet how to be polite in this situation, though truthfully, some people still don’t have a clue about telephone, email or cell phone etiquette either.

In any case, if you want to elevate your Internet social graces on social networking websites, here are a few tips.

1. No Insults: If you’re ever in the mood to badmouth someone, zip it, instead! Humiliating someone on open forums such as social networking websites is not very cool; it’s actually pretty immature and will only serve to make you look silly. If someone tries to bully you into engaging in an online spitting match, your best bet is to just ignore them.

2. Moderate Communications: Don’t over do it when it comes to communicating with your network. People who constantly send announcements (including surveys, quizzes and junk mail) are simply abusing their friendships. Send bulletins only when and if you have big news to share. It can be downright annoying to be on the receiver end of nonstop emails.

3. No Chain Letters: Never use your social networking website to send out chain letters in the form of email blasts. You’ve seen the ones that say “Send this along to 10 friends or you will have bad luck for the rest of your life.” If you do get one yourself, just delete it. No one has time for this nonsense.

4. Keep Your Profile Simple: Make sure your profile is easy to read and navigate. Don’t overload your profile with large pictures that take forever to download. Some social networking websites will offer photo galleries that will reduce your pictures to thumbnails that can then be easily enlarged by an interested visitor. This is certainly preferable.

5. Keep Your Profile Clean: You never know who’s checking out your profile, so ideally, it’s better to avoid making people feel uncomfortable with an R-Rated site unless, of course, that’s what you really want and you know that your friends are okay with it.

6. Take Care With Friend Invitations: Don’t put people in an awkward position who don’t really want to add you. Be choosy about the people you add on. You may not want coworkers, for example, reading your personal info. Also, don’t confront someone who doesn’t want to be your friend. That is bad form.

7. Promotion Awareness: Lots of people use social networking websites to promote artists, products, services and even other websites. If you’re using your profile to promote something, be subtle in how you do it, because there’s a fine line between innocent promotion and spam.

Author Ginger Marin is an actor, freelance writer and storyteller.  You can also find her on Google+

Social Networking Websites – Parents, Kids & Online Safety

by Ginger Marin

With the popularity of social networking websites here’s are some words of caution. Not everybody trying to be your friend is really trying “to be your friend”. They may have other motives and it certainly behooves parents to know what they’re kids are into.

Keeping an eye on their activities will help protect identity (theirs and yours) and keep sexual predators at bay. Content such as foal language, bullying and threats, sexually explicit terminology and especially sexually explicit photos and videos can “magically” turn up in other members’ profile pages, photo galleries, in blogs, forums and groups.

Some social networking websites closely monitor certain word tags assigned to videos, photos and groups. They might also provide a direct link on their pages so members can easily report offensive content. Although offensive content can appear anywhere on a social networking website, the most explicit content seem to appear mostly in group forums. So it pays to be vigilant if you’re a parent trying to protect a child or you simply find these things offensive.

If you’re a parent, the very first thing you should do is teach your children about the possible dangers that exist on the Internet, particularly about situations that might crop up on a social networking website, for instance:

  • Remind them that on the Internet it’s easy for people to pretend to be someone else. They can easily change their name, age and gender in an effort to get close to children.
  • Tell them to never give out personal information about themselves, the family, neighbors or friends to strangers they may meet online.
  • Tell them not to post pictures of your house with identifiable numbers and street names or pictures showing a phone number.
  • Let them know that if they encounter something or someone dangerous they should tell you about it.
  • Tell them that if they ever receive an emailed picture with sexual content, or see something on the social networking website that they find disturbing, they should tell you about it immediately.

Social networking websites are fun and kids do want to participate in them. They’ll want to build personal profiles and explore the profiles of others. A good bit of safety advice is resist the urge to “tell all”. Your social networking experience can still be fun and rewarding. You’ll make new friends and yes, some of them may even turn out to be real “finds”. But on the Internet, a little common sense goes a long way. Enjoy and be safe.

Author Ginger Marin is an actor, freelance writer and storyteller.  You can also find her on Google+

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