I spend a great deal of time going to conferences on Search Engine Optimization, Affiliate Marketing, Webmastering and so forth. Not as much as some of my crazy friends, but often enough.

For the last few years, the buzz has been “social networking”. For the first few years it was “building your own social networks”. Now it’s shifted to “taking advantage of existing social networks”.

You have your FaceBook and LinkedIn for your “basic” profile.

Then you have your blogs.

Then you have Twitter for micro-blogging (or, as I explain it to new people – like “broadcast instant messaging, only less likely to be read”).

Then you have your social bookmarking (like delicious).

Of course you can tie them all together using fun RSS tools.

As a tech geek who prided himself on NOT being on FaceBook (up until about a year ago), I have had a major conversion. Of course, I always knew I’d eventually have to take the plunge (and I did).

I’m going to blog over the next few weeks about all the different social networking tools:

  • How to take advantage of them.
  • How NOT to use them (i.e. seriously forget about FaceBook applications, unless they are truly must-have).
  • How to use them to market your business and yourself more effectively.
  • Search Engine implications.
  • Using your precious time effectively.

As somebody who is a geek, but who is also fairly new to social networking, I am going to be learning and sharing. If you are a social networking “power user” already, don’t bore yourself with what I have to say.