Social Media and the internet have made the world a viral institute. With the revolution of smart-phones, tablets, and thousands of niche social media sites, you’re never more than a few clicks away from any information you could possibly need.
Anytime I need to learn a new skill, I head to YouTube for some insightful tutorials. If that doesn’t yield the results I’m after, a good old-fashioned Google search will always shed light on the subject. I’m sure I’m not alone on this; self-educated hobbyists are everywhere. I can’t tell you how many new songs I’ve learned on the guitar by watching someone else play it on a social media site.
For social networks, you have the big four: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+. Consider these your box stores. They have almost everything you need – groups for carpet makers, financial experts, car lovers, and so on. But if you’re after meeting and learning from other like-minded individuals, the results can be a bit too broad.
This is where niche social media sites come into play. They’re great for zeroing in on people with a shared, narrow interest. Here’s an example. About 6 months ago, I took up fishing. But not just any type of fishing – kayak fishing. I’m not ashamed to say that I knew little to nothing about mixing the two. I looked for others like me on the big four, but had little luck.
I did one of those handy-dandy Google searches and found a social media niche site called yakangler.com. It’s a community of nearly 2000 registered “yak” fishermen (and women) who collectively have more knowledge on kayak fishing than I could ever need. I now know what tackle to use, paddles to buy, and even what a “kayak sleigh ride” is (imagine Santa being pulled by a 100-pound tarpon). And as an added bonus, I’ve networked with many hobbyists just like me and made a few new friends.
The same niche communities are available for business interests. Sure, you can find like-minded individuals on the big four, but niche sites streamline networking and sharing advice. Some good ones are Bizsugar.com, biznik.com, and referralkey.com but there are more – lots more. Just do one of those handy-dandy Google searches, and I’m sure you’ll hook just what you’re fishing for.