Two more inspiring stories of successful social networkers

by David Spark on April 27, 2009

This article is an addendum to a piece I wrote for Mashable entitled, “12 Inspiring Stories of Successful Social Networkers.” If you haven’t read that piece yet, read it first, and then come back and read the bonus techniques.

Here are a couple more great techniques for growing your social network and the stories of the people who made them happen.

#1 – Own a word

Wouldn’t it be great if everyone thought of your business when they thought of just one word in the English language? It’s the advertiser’s ultimate goal. Kleenex did it with tissues. Xerox did it with photocopying. David Kutcher is trying to do the same for his site, the RFP Database, with the term “RFP,” which is the abbreviation for “request for proposal.”

While Kutcher has a LinkedIn group, he’s been working hard to develop a following on Twitter (@RFPdatabase) by using the hashtag #rfp to announce million dollar projects up for bid. All this work is starting to pay off. His site is in the top three search results on Google for “RFP” and “request for proposal.” “And by making the link to our site ubiquitous to the phrase, we’re creating that bond between the item and our service,” Kutcher said. Every day, he sees at least 100 people coming to his site just via Twitter. It helps that he sends out tweets that encourage people to retweet, such as “If you see a #rfp that might interest your followers please RT it. they might land a $million project from your RT.”

#2 – Participate in LinkedIn

Personally, I have to admit I’ve never seen the true value of LinkedIn besides searching for people who work at a specific company. Then again I didn’t actually participate in LinkedIn, I simply just grew my network. But upon conducting research for this article, I am becoming a believer of the business value of LinkedIn. So many people mentioned how worthwhile LinkedIn has been for their business, like Cheryl Palmer, an executive career coach and resume writer.

To gain visibility on LinkedIn, Palmer joins relevant groups and posts articles on career development and initiates discussions in forums. In addition, she beefs up her profile by bringing in her blog’s RSS feed using Blog Link and connects other related content, like podcast interviews, using the file hosting service All of this activity has resulted in numerous invitations to connect and inquiries to her services. Those requests became so frequent that Palmer launched a LinkedIn group, The Social Networking Executive Job Hunt, to manage her conversations and make introductions with all people interested in her work.

What about you?

Got some social networking stories of your own to share? I’d like to hear them. Especially about LinkedIn since I’ve been such a naysayer for so long. Plus, if you’re looking for help building your industry voice through social networking and storytelling, my business can help you.

UPDATE: Check out my short interview with Curtis Sliwa of WABC Radio on the subject of social networking success stories.

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