Your Revenue Driver
Many thanks to Carlos Quintero for sending me a link to a recent article about Ning.
I started using Ning in April of 2009 as a result of starting to use Twitter in January of 2009. What I noted at that time was that very few of the people that I knew professionally were using Twitter. Those that were and that seemed to be "in the know" were also using Ning. So I followed the leaders.
My purpose was not to become a social media expert (which was the purpose of the people I was following) but to increase my effectiveness as a consultant to the training industry in my role as a revenue driver. I wanted to learn how these tools would drive revenue for a training company - not as a marketing tool but as a component of the content/service/value that the the training company would provide to its clients. I wanted to experience the value, create the value in a repeatable fashion and then help my clients do the same.
Today I can articulate a strategy that blends Twitter, LinkedIn and Ning and I have just begun to take a look at Yammer.
At some point Ning will go away I think - someone will purchase it. It might be bought by LinkedIn or Plaxo or Facebook or Microsoft - but it is a real business with real value so the product is not likely to go away.
It contains blogs, videos, pictures, discussion groups, user profiles and - branding - all available in seconds to its owner and to its members. It also has many apps (not as many as the iphone or Twitter) but plenty enough and more new ones coming along at a rate faster than can be absorbed - this is a good thing!