It’s kind of amazing that on the Internet, anyone can become somebody. Beauty gurus, celebrity bloggers and all sorts of small businesses have emerged with the help of the Internet. While I was a student, I didn’t always see the point of vain video-blogging, but as a young professional, I am beginning to understand how social media can build an online reputation for individuals and businesses alike.
In a short three months, I quickly learned the power of social media while trying to set up a freelance design business with a friend. In order to help our business grow, we set up a WordPress blog, a shared e-mail address, a Twitter account with automatic feeds from our blog, an account on Blip.fm and others while monitoring our visitors with Google Analytics. We used Google Wave to share resources and communicate internally, and Skype for conference calls. Aside from the $15 to set up a domain, everything else was practically at no cost. The “word of mouse” quickly brought us subscribers and feedback, and helped us receive multiple client enquiries. Our blog is now three months old, and we are proud to have been featured on other blogs, had guest contributions and over 3,200 unique visits.
As designers, we are some of the most active media users and consumers. Communities such as Behance and FFFFOUND have opened us up to a wealth of visual inspiration. Increasingly, I have found myself excited over the strengths and opportunities of social media. I started to follow Tim Ho, a Hong Kong-based digital strategist at Ogilvy PR who writes interesting posts about ways to use technology and media. A friend of mine working in public relations at D&G also recently told me about WGSN in Hong Kong, which is a company that provides the fashion industry with online research and trend analysis. It makes me especially excited to know all these things are happening back home, which is exactly where I want to be connected to.
I am regularly active on way too many social networks. Among my favourites are Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Delicious and Lookbook.nu. I have yet to explore Tumblr as a micro-blogging resource myself, but the ones that I currently follow are short and sweet (in fact, I am guilty of following over 100 blogs on Google Reader). And If I knew how to get on Dribbble, I would be on it too.
I don’t consider myself tech-savvy, but I am definitely open to the opportunities of social media. It seems technology assists design more than ever now, in the way that design is a substantial aid to business.
PS. If you can tell me about Dribbble, let’s get in touch!