The title of this post is a bit of a misnomer after all blogging is social media. However I was inspired to write this series of blog posts by the KLCK Bloggers network in response to a presentation I gave at the last meeting.
Researching your ideas for blogs or gauging the opinion of others can be a long process. Social media makes it easier. Asking your social media communities for opinion and suggestions is a fantastic way to get new insights on what you are doing. But what tools can you use?
The recently launched Facebook Questions tool always gets a great response. The beauty of this tool is that you can ask the question on your own page but as people respond their friends see the question and are encouraged to respond giving it a larger reach than simply your own community and freinds. There is also an option for respondents to add their own answers, suggesting answers you may not have thought of before.
Simply putting a question out on Twitter can provoke responses. My recent call out for Facebook landing page examples returned lots of suggestions, some of which made it into my Bloggertone post.
Linkedin is a huge mine of information and the Linkedin Answers tools allows you to get suggestions and answers from Linkedin users around the world even if you are not connected to them directly or through a group. You will find Linkedin Answers by clicking ‘More’ on your Linkedin home page and selecting ‘Answers’ from the drop down menu. Answers are categorised by topic.
Linkedin groups are a fantastic resource to ask you question or monitor trends within your industries. Again it gives you the opportunity to gather opinion from people outside your networks.
There’s been a lot of buzz around Quora this year. It’s simply a questions and answers network but it’s very well used and has become a fantastic space to find out anything about everything. Although mostly techie at the moment it is growing. It can be used both to answer your own questions
Whatever industry you are in there will be a forum or message board for you. Searching these out, joining them and becoming an active member can be a great resource for information.
What other social media do you use for research? Do you have any tips and tricks to share? If so let me know by leaving a comment below.
Christina Giliberti says
I agree Amanda, its all about realising the potential in all online resources. Social Media is open and direct, which is simply fantastic for gaining info. You can tap into the minds of many experienced professionals and gain a multitude of responses.
Marie Ennis-O'Connor says
Hi Amanda, you have pretty much covered all bases here. I am seeing social networking plaforms like LinkedIN and Facebook turning into a giant panel before my eyes – surveys seem to have exploded over the past few months. I sometimes do a specific blog post addressing a question I would like to see debated among by community of readers. This works better of course when you are trying to gauge the reaction of your audience to a concept which requires more indepth analysis. For this I would also use the old standard – Survey Monkey. What continually amazes and delights me about social media is how naturally helpful people are and how much they like to participate.