Social Bookmarking Tips and Tricks

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By Sue McCrossin, Contributing Blogger

Recently, I got an interesting email from the owner of Greenlinepaper.com, Steve Baker. His question was “Sue, our website now has a share button for MySpace, Twitter, Digg, etc. on the product pages. Is there anything that you can recommend that we do to “circulate” things?” And I thought maybe some of you have the same questions….so I decided to post about this subject.

First of all, social bookmarks are places on the web like Twitter, Digg and de.licio.us which allow you to bookmark your favorites, just like you do on your own browsers on your computers, and share them with others. You “tag” your bookmarks so that they are relevant, and this allows other people to find relevant information quickly, rather than searching through millions of possible sites. Humans recommend sites to each other rather than search programs.

Social bookmarks offer links back to articles or pages on your websites. So it makes sense that if you have a new article you are posting in your blog, or a new page on your site that you think is relevant for a search term, you can add a quick button on the page for others to post it to social sites. This is what Steve has added to his web pages.

So after you post an article to your blog or website and it has all these social buttons associated with it, do you then have to submit it to 30+ social bookmarking sites? Not really, there are two really good free social bookmarking “automation” tools you can use. One is socialmarker and the other is Onlywire. They can help you spread a link on 30+ of the best social bookmarking sites in under 15 minutes! For hard core social bookmarkers, there is also bookmarkingdemon.com which costs $149 and automates pings as well.

So how well does this work? Social bookmarks probably won’t do much good for your pages unless you are promoting great content to the right audience. Then you can get some traffic if people at these social sites like what you share with them. Remember that if you are trying to get people to your site by suggesting that your content is interesting, and it isn’t, people will start disliking your website and give it poor ratings.
If you have good content or “value” on each page, people will rate it well and want to further share it. Consequently, if your pages are low in valuable content, people will ignore or even worse, rate them unfavorably.

It actually matters what time of day you decide to post your social bookmarks. On most social bookmarking sites you have only 24 hours to get to the front page. So, make sure to post when your supporters are actively working. Try posting in the afternoons on weekdays for best results, and make sure you submit to the right category.

One last thing I want to mention about social bookmarking is that you are more likely to be noticed by others if you have been posting useful stuff for different sites over a long period of time. Make sure your profile has links to many different sites in order to create a top-profile. Your content will make it to the first page of a social site because it has been rated and shared by your network of friends. Try to get at least 15 votes from your friends in the first hour that you submit so that others will also rate your article. 50 ratings can get you to the top page of many social sites.

The final piece of Steve’s question was how to also use LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. It is hard to answer this part of the question because there is no one “right” way to use social media, but in my opinion, every business should use a blog to make interesting posts with social bookmarks. This blog should reflect opinions and contain very useful and specific information. Posts should be made as often as possible (daily if at all possible), and then shared through social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Sue McCrossin has been in the IT field for many years, and has gotten really excited about social media. In particular, campaigns using a combination of Facebook and Twitter have been successful with many different types of clients. Before starting Boomtown Internet Group, Sue worked as a consultant at Penn State University, supporting internet business development and several Philadelphia area businesses in their programming groups. Sue’s company, Boomtown Internet Group encompasses internet marketing, social media, and web design, all of which are important for realizing the power of lead generation on the internet.

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