IFB Poll: How much do social networks work for your blog?

Yesterday, Microsoft launched their new smartphone specifically tailored for social network users. Well, for MySpace, Twitter and Facebook users. As bloggers, we know that social networks can be great tools to enhance the blogging experience. As a new blogger, I used social networks quite extensively to get a feel of the fashion blogging landscape. It was so informative to see who was using social networks, and how much.

Social Networks: Newbies vs. Veterans

Fast forward to three years later, I still actively use social networks, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and on occasion…Lookbook.nu…and toying with Foursquare.  The level of investment has gone down significantly. It sounds like a lot, but I used to use two or three times that on a regular basis. What happened? Burnout? Am I that fickle? Have I out grown it? Are new bloggers dropping out too?

That's what I'd like to know..How much do social networks work for your blog? When it comes to investing in social networks, how much do you invest, and where do you draw the line?

After being tired from spending too much time on the computer, I looked at the returns of the social networks, mapped out which ones gave the most back in terms of traffic, engagement, ease of use and ones that I felt aligned with my blog's brand the most. The heaviest factor with networks was how much traffic they yielded to my own blog, then how much I relied on them to create content either through inspiration, through actual leads, or through support. After all, as much as I love social media, when it comes to time, it's business.

So, when it comes to your blog strategies…

[poll id=”4″]

Leave a comment to share your thoughts on time spent in social networks!

Further reading: IFB Forums: Is it too much networking?

Image by _Zeta_

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28 Responses

  1. Eva // evoluer

    i spend 30-40 hours on my computer for work – so when it comes to social networking I tend to just go to FB. I like that I can have my blog fanpage & friends in one place. I’m use to the format (although they do change it every now and then!) and it’s just the right amount of info I can handle at the end of the day.

    I use to use Flickr as well – but it’s too much to maintain at the moment & I’m still quite overwhelmed with Twitter!!!

    I guess at this point with my blog , I’m not trying to gain the most traffic or grow it too fast. I do still have to produce creative work for ‘the man’ 5 days a week – so my blog is my way of making some creative freedom.

    Also, IFB has been a great community to be involved with! I love how like-minded everyone here is!

    I’m interested in seeing what others have to say!

    xo,
    eva
    .-= Eva // evoluer´s last blog ..thrift score // boots =-.

    Reply
  2. shauna

    There are almost too many to keep up with these days! I have my blog’s RSS feed linked to both my Twitter and Facebook. I like to use Twitter and Flickr in conjunction with my blog but limit Facebook to spying on people from my past. Niche communities tend to be better than broad social networks anyway.
    .-= shauna´s last blog ..Perfect Workspace =-.

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  3. Madeline Veenstra

    In terms of social media accounts, I usually maintain my twitter account and am trying to get more involved with facebook, although I like the “quickness” about twitter. It’s so easy and doesn’t take up too much time to get content distributed and to build conversations/contacts with others.

    This is one of the most important reasons for me to use Twitter. To be honest I didn’t think that is did a lot in terms of driving traffic, although I was surprised to check where my traffic came from since the start of this year and the majority comes from my twitter account. It can create a steady stream of traffic over the long term if used effectively 🙂

    I’ve started to dabble with foursquare, although I find it a little scary for people to know where I am! Would love to know what others think about foursquare?
    .-= Madeline Veenstra´s last blog ..User:K.Lane =-.

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  4. Sarah K.

    I just have facebook and a few fashion-related sites like lookbook, IFB and chictopia. Usually though, I would prefer to e-mail another blogger or contact directly instead of use a social networking site. I would probably try to take up twitter though, if I had the time.
    .-= Sarah K.´s last blog ..Gotta Have it Superfast =-.

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  5. dreamsequins

    I’m a Twitter addict– maybe it’s not so productive for me to spend so much time on there– but I feel like it’s a place for me to chat with old friends and make new ones. I do get a few clicks from Twitter, but it’s a different idea from Facebook fan pages. I don’t have a fan page on Facebook because it’s too much for me to maintain on top of my personal Facebook account. I just started Foursquare and I’m addicted– but not sure how useful it is for my blogging at the moment… I’m still learning how to use it. I also have a Polyvore and Chictopia account, but don’t use those as much as Twitter or Facebook. Oh yeah- and Linked In. I like using that one a lot.
    .-= dreamsequins´s last blog ..One Hat, Three Outfits and One Pair of Glasses =-.

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  6. Retro Chick

    Last year I think I joined pretty much every fashion network thing I could find. But they have naturally whittled their way down to the easiest to maintain and most relevant ones for me.

    I have a Facebook Fan Page and a Twitter account that I update a lot, and I really like the conversation on both of those networks.

    On top of those I also have recently started using the PinUp Lifestyle Network and Vintage Network Worldwide, which both seem good and easy to update. Plus, of course, IFB!

    I’ve dropped so many though!
    .-= Retro Chick´s last blog ..Ways to Wear: Underwear as Outerwear =-.

    Reply
  7. Terri

    I use both Twitter & Facebook (but this is personal & not for blog use). Twitter does help drive visitors to my site though I must say. Though it’s all a slow process… it’s all incremental so it’s worth it!

    xx

    Reply
  8. fashions blogs

    I believe in social networks for fashion bloggers. I think it is imperative to let people know your blog exists. That’s why I created the fastest growing fashion blogger network/community and hosting site http://fashionsblogs.com there is always more to learn and more networking to be done in the rapidly moving world of fashion

    Reply
  9. grit and glamour

    I’ve signed up for what seems like a gazillion networks. I’ve started and abandoned Facebook fan pages…FB is totally redundant if you’re a blogger. Time-consuming and useless, really. Love Twitter, though. I’ve found it to be extremely entertaining, informative, and useful as a blogger and consumer.

    I’ve signed up for some blog RSS networks like Bloglovin’ and I think it has a great interface, though personally, I get something out of clicking actual links daily instead of reading from a feed. But Bloglovin’ is my fave in terms of RSS delivery.

    As far as the spate of streetstyle/personaly gallery sites…

    Weardrobe has a terribly buggy UI and crap tech support/help. I still haven’t heard from them about the login/signup issues I was having. So I’m over it. Chictopia has overly rigid photo requirements that would require me to resize every photo after already resizing for my blog. Lookbooks.nu is OK after you Google “get lookbooks.nu invitation code,” but I don’t like the six hours between uploading photos rule (I often upload lots at one time, to play catch-up). Ultimately, the best, most flexible, most user-friendly is lookbooks.com. But again, I feel there is some redundancy with blog posts. The only thing these sites offer me is the opportunity to increase readership, but if you do a lot of writing for your blog and other sites, I’m not sure the extra work is worth it. There’s just not enough time in the day if you’re not a full-time blogger.
    .-= grit and glamour´s last blog ..WVW: Into the Wild* =-.

    Reply
    • grit and glamour

      OK, I stand corrected on Weardrobe…they finally got back to me, and the site is easy to use with no stringent photo size requirements…BUT…it’s not as user-friendly as Lookbooks.com.
      .-= grit and glamour´s last blog ..WVW: Into the Wild* =-.

      Reply
  10. diya

    frequently use:
    facebook (mostly for personal account, I’ve had it since high school in 2005-2006 when it first started).
    twitter
    chictopia
    flickr (to host images and to share via flickr groups)
    weardrobe
    thefashionspot
    delancefashion
    ifb (of course)

    also have:
    myspace
    lookbook
    fabsugar
    lucky stylespotter
    stylecaster
    fashism
    and a couple others I can’t remember off of the top of my head. YEAH I have WAY TOO MANY…
    .-= diya´s last blog ..spring time =-.

    Reply
  11. sirdorian

    it is a love/hate relation. mostly I really hate the whole Social Network thing because it is a time robber. but i´m not able to pay an intern for that. so I need to do it to keep in touch and promote the new posts, contests etc.

    twitter is a real traffic gainer, facebook not that much. at the end of the day, I think every brand or blog etc need the SN. at hubspot.com there was a great webinar today about this topic. many things will happen in the future and for those who are depend on the internet for living, it´s important to be ahead.
    .-= sirdorian ´s last blog ..Colour up your spring! =-.

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  12. Denise @ Swelle

    Oh geez, I hadn’t even heard of Foursquare! I can’t help but think ‘Oh no, not another one.’ My thinking about anything new is, if it’s that good for my blog AND it’s something I would enjoy spending time on, I’ll get the hint eventually. I just don’t have any more time in my day to be proactive with these things. I’ve been on Twitter far less lately simply because time is so limited but I do try to keep it up and I do enjoy the friendships I’ve made. That makes it far easier to do as it’s genuine and not simply a matter of going through the motions. Maintaining a network of relationships is a heck of a lot of work! If the people weren’t so great I really couldn’t justify the commitment.
    .-= Denise @ Swelle´s last blog ..Old Castles, Spring Gardens and Stella McCartney’s Crystal Horse Pt. 2 =-.

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  13. Steff

    I’m pretty lazy. I use Facebook personally, but it’s not connected to my blog in any way. And I kinda sorta hate Twitter. Perhaps in another month or two I’ll break down and make a Facebook page for my blog. I tend not to tell my friends and family about my blog though and rely on my Internet friends and Google to spread the word about my blog. So I’d kinda feel silly to suddenly have this blog that has existed for almost a year in my Facebook statuses and what not.

    Having said that, Facebook is one of my main referring sources for my traffic, as FB pages for designers/labels I write about will post a link to my blog there.
    .-= Steff´s last blog ..Von Bardonitz, Part B =-.

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  14. Glitzerpony

    Social Networks are tricky lil’ things. I think you’ll get lots in return if you’re one of the “everywhere registered”, but then – before – you really have to invest half of your lifetime (that’s what it seems like to me).

    I mean, it should be mentioned that bigger companies hire people for managing their appaerance in the Social Network World all day long, so one should not underestimate the working load linked with this topic.
    .-= Glitzerpony´s last blog ..Eine Hommage an das Vergessene: Das Poesiealbum =-.

    Reply
  15. Sandi

    I use typepad for my blog, which is now showing traffic that comes to my blog from twitter and facebook. Some – but not very much. This may be in part because I am not so active on them. I work full time and can barely keep up with my blog. Most of my traffic comes from search engines or others linking to me.

    But, I find that people like to reach out to me via twitter or facebook and expect fo find me in these places. So, I think it’s critical to keep a presence at Twitter and Facebook, even if they don’t bring in huge amounts of traffic.

    Reply
  16. calivintage

    i actively use twitter and facebook. like shauna mentioned, i have my rss feed set up to post new blog content on both my twitter account and facebook. by far, my most valuable interactions with readers, bloggers, and businesses comes from twitter, and it manages to drive pretty decent traffic.

    i used to be much more active on style networking sites like lookbook, chictopia, and weardrobe, but as a blogger, i am growing increasingly skeptical of using these sites because the terms of use allow them to sell our images to third parties thereby profiting from our content and allowing other businesses to sell product with those same images. it also feels redundant when i am already posting the same images on my blog. and while they don’t necessarily generate very much traffic, either, they are incredibly useful tools for connecting with other bloggers, so i am still active on those sites for now. this is one of the main reasons i prefer ifb and other social networking sites that wont use your images for profit or sell you out to the highest bidder.
    .-= calivintage´s last blog ..the basics =-.

    Reply
    • Kristina | Pretty Shiny Sparkly

      You bring up a point I wasn’t aware of – the legal issue – very important, thanks for the heads up!
      .-= Kristina | Pretty Shiny Sparkly´s last blog ..Follow PSS & Win a Coach Legacy ID Holder! =-.

      Reply
  17. Deepti

    Facebook and Orkut was something that I was doing since my college days and I use them to get in touch with my long lost school mates. So those are personal. In addition to that I use Twitter, IFB, Chictopia, Weardrobe and LookBook.nu. Thats about it. But the most exposure I have had is through IFB. I am still in the learning/growth stage and I have a long way to go.
    .-= Deepti´s last blog ..Minty blue =-.

    Reply
  18. Amanda @Bespoken4

    I tend to use Twitter pretty exclusively. I have dabbled in Facebook, and find it useful to gain a fanbase (in which new posts of the blog automatically show up in their feed) but I don’t find I update the FB page other than posting my new blog posts.

    Twitter is where I spend most of my time online when I am not blogging and find I have gained fans, friends and contacts through this social media tool.
    .-= Amanda @Bespoken4´s last blog ..levis-men-women-fall-2010-9 =-.

    Reply
  19. Fi Figueroa

    For some reason, I am going through that “burnout” stage. Where, twitter might not be my daily cup of bread, or I even forget to post new stuff about my blog on my facebook fanpage. I am actually more into the blog. Responding on every comment, emails to people who have caught my eye. And probably because I am working so much on other stuff. Twitter was once a place to reply to quirky things and once in a while enter someones blog because they had a new post. NOW it’s all about click HERE for this or CLICK HERE for that. Something about how personal a blog is got lost along the way with all the fuzz.

    Im not really into the apps that require my location. I find that quite freaky. lol But, there has to be a line where either you give back to your readers (for putting up with all those twitter messages haha) or you become that machine, that doesn’t even enjoy blogging.

    Reply
  20. julia

    I am signed up for a whole bunch, but only actively check a few… I would say that twitter has yielded the largest returns for me, so until the next best thing comes along, twitter is definitely my ‘go-to!’
    .-= julia´s last blog ..Cynthia Rowley for Roxy Spring 2010 =-.

    Reply
  21. Lola Re

    @calvinvintage, I had no idea that some social media websites can sell your images for profit! I’ll have to look closer at the terms and conditions

    I’m signed up for facebook, chictopia, lookbook.nu, & modepass.com. I actually made myself a spreadsheet so I can make sure to upload pics to all my social media accounts. lol!

    I have Twitter but I never use it; I have no idea how to use my RSS feed… since these seem to generate traffic, maybe it would be smarter to concentrate on them?

    Lola Re

    Reply
  22. Beauty Schools

    This is a great blog topic. Social network accounts bring in LOADS of traffic on our blog pages. We use all the main ones – facebook, twitter, linkedin, myspace, but do mass pushes on digg and stumbleupon. It makes a huge difference!

    Reply