#CmgrChat 7/6 How to Use Niche Sites

Many community managers monitor social media properties other than Facebook and twitter. And many are jumping right onto the Google+ bandwagon! This conversation examines just how community managers are able to successfully manage all roads that lead to engagement.


Q1. What platforms are you using/looking at for your audience? How do you make the determination to expand your presence?

grmeyer Primary platforms: Twitter, FB, Blog secondary: Quora (haven’t figured out where Goolgle+ fits)

RachelYeomans I use Quora and LinkedIn Questions / Answers for answering my questions

Fisherish Predominately its FB and twitter. A great platform often ignored is #slideshare ..great for thought leadership

shesafitchick Loving Quora for Q&A. I think forums can be great for this as well!

celivingston Forums (Yet Another Forum), plus the “big 3” fb, twitter, blog. Also on YouTube and Flickr, but it’s minimal. Yammer for internal

anthonybrown They don’t get the hype that Facebook/Twitter get, but YouTube/Flickr have HUGE communities.

hanisha Have our own little travellers community site…… Built when FB was relatively unknown here (’06)

candidcomments Keeping a self-hosted community fresh & exciting can be your biggest battle – I tend to look @ relevant communities.

annabassham @susieques Benefits are you have more control over community, it feels more intimate…cons are not as many ppl


Q2. Is there any concern about audience fragmentation? ie can you be in too many places at once?

IslandPrintGrp I was just talking about this yesterday. Hard to say if hosting on many platforms is more beneficial than a core few.

aliciamarie112 I don’t think you can be in too many places at once as long as all places are monitored

GeekyRockChick I see a lot of ‘we don’t like Twitter’ comments on Facebook… which I think proves you MUST be in multiple places.

ilovegarick I’m a bit wary of Branch-out.. kinda dead no? Weren’t there privacy issues as well?

Solice Follow your audience. Set a core place for communication (blog etc.) but engage everywhere.

PrashSabharwal From a purely SEO perspective, audience fragmentation may not be a bad thing.

SueOnTheWeb Better to concentrate on a few areas, don’t want to spread yourself too thin. Harder to build relationships

AskTim I think you have to find a balance. Our members will be in 2 or 3 places but not 10.

theTsaritsa I’m waiting for the day where I can organize and update *all* of my social networks in one place, though!

jahoerbelt I think you have to worry more about being the wrong places. If you pick the right places for your audience, then you’re good

ATT_Jam It’s great 2 have presence in a lot of networks but having 1 consistent & thorough place (ie forums) to direct people to helps

gordondym If you are hanging out where audience is talking, you’re *never* overextended


Q3: Is it ever OK to syndicate a message on all platforms? Why or Why not?

dougridley Different platforms are made for different forms of communication. Make sure your outreach is tailored correctly.

sarahkayhoffman No! Hashtags on FB & LinkedIn look ridiculous.

bluephoenixnyc Syndication is key. It’s an easy way to develop your brand across platforms while keeping a consistent voice.

RachelYeomans Hashtags should only be used in Twitter and when I’m goofing around on IM & emails to my fellow #cmgr friends :p

candidcomments I think some hashtags are engaging & fun on FB.. but not all.

jahoerbelt I think questions are good standardized on all platforms because the engagement or responses will differ.

KapturIt Yes, if you need an important message to get out to everyone at once. Don’t want one audience left out of an opportunity

jennyweigle NOT ok to syndicate one message on all platforms. They are different for a reason and each should be treated individually.

PrashSabharwal If you update all your social networks at once, you’re one step behind your competitor.

cusecomm If you format the message to make sense in each area you can re-purpose a message not just syndicate

gordondym Syndication is only good for TV shows, not social media messages

annabassham Take the two seconds to personalize your message. It really pays off.

bluntdelivery issues w/ syndication: formatting, but also duplication for those connections that you may have across platforms.


Q4 Will we reach a point where there are too many platforms? Or are we creating necessary tools?

jahoerbelt I think there are already too many platforms, but the good ones rise to the top and stick around, the bad ones get ignored.

karen_leslie Attention spans and time in a day are limited. Attrition will happen and platforms will die, as they always have. Evolution.

GeekyRockChick MySpace – enough said. RT @grmeyer@jpeddeplatforms appear, grow, wither, and disappear.

PrashSabharwal Think Darwin will take care of that.

SueOnTheWeb I would say there are too many as it is.

pwride Will always be too many platforms as you can’t stop people creating. Need to select the ones that work or have the most users.

celivingston I think we’re there. SMB’s are struggling with engagement/scalability. We’re the ones who suffer.

contrapuntist We are in the midst of innovation and trial. New sites are a necessity for this space to evolve.

_faith It’s Milton’s Marketplace of Ideas. As they say in “Ragtime”, everyone’s created equal, but the cream rises to the top.

pushingvision Treat your website/blog as your home and manage colonies like FB, Twitter, G+ as potentially temporary. Revolutions occur.

inSWONGful You gotta stick with a couple platforms you like and be dedicated to building those communities. Quality over quantitiy!

Hope to see you at the next #cmgrchat on Wednesdays at 2-3pm EST. Let us know what you’d like to chat about next — drop us a comment below!

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About the author

Judi Huck

Mover. Shaker. Candlestick maker. Currently engaged as a community and social media strategist.