The current buzz word in cyberspace is Social Networking. The concept of working together has always levelled the playing field for small business. The net is full of information on all forms of networking from joint ventures to large networking companies. The foundation of these programs is solid.
The theories work ? to a point. Most of these programs stop working when small business owners start building large networks of people who are only interested in promoting themselves. The key component of networking is to invest time promoting others. This is especially important if the business owners have no time for promotion. Networking Groups The best networking groups are 3 ? 12 people. Anything more than this and 'free loaders' get in, sap the groups resources, and move on.
A group of three to twelve people can become intimate with each other's products and services, and use their resources to 'exchange' promotion. The theory behind the small network group is simple. Each person would normally spend 3 ? 5 hours a week networking for their own business. If they use that same 3 ? 5 hours networking for a group of five, and those five people are networking for them, they can expand their promotion x5. For example: One person can build 10 inbound links to their business in an hour.
Now, they create a blog that is just for networking on a topic that covers their group. As this blog grows they embed links in the blog for their company and for their group's companies. Now, the business owner is building 20 links for their business in an hour, and 20 links for their group's businesses.
The catch? In that same span of time, each of their group members are spending 1 hour on their site. So, with a group of 5, each person is receiving. One person works 1 hour and builds 10 links, then 5 people working 1 hour will build 50 links. A Right Way and A Wrong Way The big mistake that most groups make is by racing around the web looking for places to build links. This is a waste of time. Instead, the group should each build 5 blogs.
They don't need to write for the blogs, in fact, upload free content articles into the blogs. Each company owner can write 5 articles a month, with two or three links back to their website. They can submit this to their friends, who post each article on all five of their blogs. Do the math, five articles with three links, posted on 25 blogs, equals 150 inbound links a month. Time invested? The time needed to write 5 articles from 200- 350 words.
Five people working together can increase their Page Rank from PR0 to PR2 in less than three months. They can increase from PR2 to PR3 in six months without ever investing a dime. Tools Needed A self contained group can easily promote all their businesses rather quickly. There are other ways to run a group like this.
Hiring a blog/forum manager might cost $200 - $500 a month, but this person can build many more links in less time. The money invested by each member is well worth the money invested. How to Build a Networking Group Each month the moderator divides the group into groups of three. Each of those people build 10 links to each group member, hits their pages, and replies to posts. This increases the PR of the blogs, and drives each person's business.
Each person works to promote the host blog. The host blog in turn increases in PR at a much higher rate. The host blog hits PR5 and pulls all the other business websites listed on that page up with it, at least one-half a PR ranking.
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