Global B2B buy sell website: www.bytrade.com Been tweeting til you’re hoarse, find blogging a slog or fed up of Facebook? PR expert Paula Gardner takes a look at how to make social networking work for you. PR used to be simple. You wrote a press release, maybe an article or two, kept on top of what was going on in the news and made sure you were poised to speak to radio stations if they called. But today, PR is changing fast. We’re expected to know how to tweet, blog, post, link, Digg and spend hours on Facebook ... it can seem like a full time job keeping up. But even if you’re signed up to all these sites, you might not be getting the coverage or results you were hoping for. Here’s my top five tips on making social networking work for you Below is a list of five crucial things you must do to utilize social networking effectively for your business: 1. Choose networks that cater to potential prospects for your business. There are so many social networks to choose from now, it can be overwhelming to keep up with all of them. In order to be effective, you simply have to make choices. Choose networks that cater to your particular market. The more targeted the network, the more interest and activity you are likely to generate. 2. Take time to create a comprehensive, well-written profile. Many people simply assume that they will make money by filling out a profile on a social network and adding their website address. This is highly unlikely. The benefits of a social network come with interaction-and that can only happen when folks can get to know you. Take the time to fill out your profile completely, with both business and personal information (your interests, hobbies or goals) so people can get to know you as a person and a business owner. People tend to do business with people they feel like they know, so the more cold and impersonal your profile, the less likely people will want to interact with you. Liven it up! Show your personality-but do remember to behave in a friendly but businesslike manner. 3. Interact with community members and build relationships. In order to build traction within a community, you need to interact. This does not mean simply messaging others with information about your business or submitting an article once a month. You need to take the time to get to know them-find out what is important to them, ask about their business. You want to build a quality network of folks who know about what you do and care about you. This will encourage them to do business with and refer you. 4. Take advantage of the extra features offered by the network. Most social networks today provide many opportunities to help you get your message out: banner ads, classified ads, blog platforms, article submissions, video hosting platforms and more. Sure, some may cost a few bucks here or there, but if you really make use of the features provided, you can quickly become a superstar on any network! 5. Refer clients and prospects to join the network. Invite business colleagues, clients and potential clients to join the social networks you use. Is it easier to catch a particular fish in the ocean, or in a tiny pond? Bring all your prospects as you meet them to your tiny pond and you can get to know them better and interact with them on a regular, more personal basis. When it comes time for them to buy, you'll be close by! While these five tips represent some of the best ways to help you get more business using social networks, they are by no means the only ones. To be effective, you must have a plan of action and follow it consistently. Use these tips to get started, and then continue to build the list as you become more effective at marketing your business online utilizing social networks.