A lot of us who are using social networking to its full extent are probably knowledgeable about Ning as members of several networks or as network creators who have used this popular and growing free platform to set up and manage our own networks. I've done just that with BlackWebpreneur and I'm guilty of belonging to several other networks created by others. I've discovered a great way to promote my network using Twitter while also growing followers who may become network members or potential customers in the future.
To use Twitter to promote your Ning network, follow these easy steps:
- Set up a Twitter account for your network. This account will be separate and distinct from any existing Twitter account you already have–if you want to grow your network, it deserves the distinction of a separate account. Be sure to include an interesting description and URL address. Use a service like FreeTwitterDesigner.com to customize your page to create immediate interest when people visit. My network Twitter page is here.
- Set up a Twitterfeed
account. Create a new feed for your Ning network news feed. You can
post your network feed to Twitter (or to Facebook) and will have to
authenticate access using a process that protects your identity and
ensures the security of your accounts. Name the feed and paste the
location of your network activity RSS feed. Use the advanced settings
to determine the posting frequency (I use every 30 minutes), post
content, whether you want to include links (a definite yes so that
people get to your network if they click on a tweet that they like),
and a post prefix or suffix. Prefixes and suffixes can be useful for
introducing where the tweet came from or to automatically include
hashtags to categorize a tweet. Be careful, prefixes and suffixes use
up precious characters in your tweet. You can also determine how many
items to include with each feed post.
- Log onto your Ning network. Adjust/check your Latest Activity settings. I recommend checking all the options to provide the greatest variety in what is posted. Go to your network Home page and find the RSS icon for your network activity. It will be a small black RSS feed icon. Copy the link location by right clicking (Windows) or holding down your mouse button for a popup menu (Mac).
Twitterfeed RSS updates are not a substitute for regular, informational tweets. This technique allows you and your followers to easily stay informed about new members, posts, discussions, or other network activity. Your network activity will also receive exposure to millions of Twitter users. Many who see your network activity will become new members of your network. If you want to see an example of how I use Twitter to promote BlackWebpreneur Network, check out my BlackWebpreneur account on Twitter.