What if you could create your very own Facebook? A social networking site that you run, based on your interests and whose members must abide by your vision, goals, and rules? Guess what, WABCers – you can do just that through Ning.com! I know – it’s crazy. Here we’ve spent the last 12 days talking about other social media platforms, and now your kooky leader is bringing up the idea of hosting your own network. There are drawbacks to be sure. T-I-M-E being chief among them. But if you have a special interest and haven’t found the perfect social site yet, Ning offers you the mechanism by which to create your very own social network. Ning has other benefits, though – chief among them being numerous sites on all sorts of topics that may attract your target readers. Are there any circumstances under which you could see yourself creating your own social network? Take a spin around the Ning Directory just to see what else is out there. Much like blogs, you’ll find half-abandoned Ning sites (ahem … I have one of those) and thriving sites. Are you inspired? Could you find time to visit one or two in your genre just to see if hanging out might be worthwhile? And by all means, if you already have a Ning site, share the link with us!
OK, some might compare today’s prompt to yesterday’s – but they are different. This one is a little more creative than necessarily practical. Your answer doesn’t even have to be physically plausible – the goal is just to have a little fun, now that you’ve worked so hard for nearly 2 straight weeks! Here’s the question: If you could create a social media platform that doesn’t exist yet, what would it look like? What would it do? How would you use it to promote your books as well as those of other authors you know/like?
First off, let me say I won't be joining Ning unless I can round up a ton of people to help split the cost. Plans starting at $25 generally turn into much more when you add bells and whistles. But I took a cruise around the site, and those with the cash flow have done some awesome things. So, let's jump onto the real question in both the prompts above: What would your social media platform do?
My rules would be simple:
- No spamming
- Keep it nice or get the hell out
- Love thy neighbor
- No reviews allowed
- Have a lot of fun
- A place to do a giveaway of your books - must be free and not require purchases
- Ease of upload for book covers and a place for a link
- Book lists
- A wall like Facebook's where things are streamed as they happen
- Easy to find author lists
- Easy to find reviewer lists and their genres
- One-click sharing across all social media
- One-click linkup of all social media accounts
Basically, like GoodReads and Facebook combined but only one 'group' allowed. It would be a place where authors could go and add themselves and readers could go to find great books without all the mumbo-jumbo of other sites. If you see something you like, share it. If you don't, leave it and move on to the next thing. Like a bookstore online where the authors are present and giving stuff away. How awesome would that be?
It's not a realistic site, but it sure would be fun.
Tomorrow, I'm going to be presenting a list. Call it a schedule, if you will. So everyone can use every social media platform we've discussed this week and it only take up an hour a day (this includes your blog!).
Let me tell you, I've used an hour a day for over a year. In January of 2012, if you plugged my name, Jo Michaels, into Google, I didn't show up anywhere. Now, just over a year later, because of that hour a day, I'm every search result on the first page but one. Remember that video I uploaded last week? It's there already.
Check it out: Jo Michaels Google Search Results
And tell me I'm crazy. How would you like for that to be you? It's possible. Don't get overwhelmed by all this stuff. It's easy to manage when you take small bites and spread the butter thin.
Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!