Use the phrase “Social Media” and it is anyone’s guess what that actually conveys as the meaning seems to change and have nuance based on context. All semantics aside, for the purposes of this very brief tutorial we are going to outline a few elements of Social Media that may help our members get the most out of Voice of Security.
Voice of Security utilizes many forms of Social Media to help educate and inform those working within the Security Industry. While the substantive content that we have to offer to Security Professionals is all on the Voice of Security website, we utilize these other forms of Social Media as conduits and networks to spread updates about our Voice of Security content in multiple ways.
This helps our members who use these various forms of Social Media as they have multiple ways to learn of Voice of Security information and news, as well as multiple ways to interact with other Voice of Security members.
We recognize for some of our newest members, and even non-members, that this whole idea of Social Media may be a bit “new” to you. This tutorial is written from that perspective. While you may have heard of the names we are using in the Social Media space, names like Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, we recognize you may not use any of those forms of Social Media and, therefore, may not know much about them. Or, in some cases, you’ve heard stories about negative elements of those Social Media outlets and may have formed a premature opinion of them.
While this tutorial will not be able to provide more than an overview of the mentioned Social Media sites, and how Voice of Security uses those sites to serve our members and inform the larger Security Industry, our hope is you better understand Social Media in a business context after reading this tutorial.
Like our other tutorials, let’s begin by looking at a couple of images from the Voice of Security website where you will see reference to Social Media. We have three core parts of our site where Social Media is visible. Each is outlined below with a corresponding image.
Right Sidebar – We mentioned this in the Navigation Tutorial #1 and return to it here in more detail. (Click to enlarge). The Social Media box on our sidebar does many things.
- Email Address Space – The first area (“A” on the image) uses your email address to alert you to new stories and content we put on Voice of Security. This is done through a service known as Feedburner. If you put your email address in this box and submit it you will go to a couple of Feedburner screens to verify you own the email address. Once done you will receive email updates of new site content.
- Orange “Feed” Icon – A similar method of learning of updates is the first icon in the bottom row (“B” on the image). It is an orange icon with a symbol similar to the Voice of Security icon on it. You can get our content in a couple ways using that icon. In most browsers if you click it you can place it on your browser toolbar and when you put your mouse over it you will see links to the newest content on our site. That list will dynamically change over time. If you click it today you will see some links, but if you click it a couple days from now you will see links to newer content—as it is designed to keep showing you the newer content in your browser. The icon also can be used if you use a news reader (they go by many names and have changed over the years). Summarizing, if you take a product like Google Reader, you can set up “feeds” from various sites to aggregate new content into one location—in this case “Google Reader.” I linked to the Reader if you want more details about using such a tool to get Voice of Security content. Again, just like makes of automobiles there are many types of news readers and Google Reader is just the one used in this example. The real key is they all need the link information from that orange icon (“B” in the image) in order to operate.
- Blue “t” Twitter Icon – The next icon is the Twitter Icon (“C” in the image). Twitter is a Social Media service that uses text-based messages of 140 characters or less to communicate to other Twitter users who choose to “follow” another Twitter user. This icon takes you to the Voice of Security Twitter account where you can “follow” us and then you will begin to receive those text-based messages we send out on Twitter about the happenings at Voice of Security. More on Twitter and how to use it is at this link.
- Blue “f” Facebook Icon – The next icon is the Facebook Icon (“D” in the image) This icon will take you to the Voice of Security Facebook page. Facebook is the most used social networking site in the world and connections to other users on Facebook is known as “friending” someone. Once you do this you are able to quickly share information among each other and network on common interests you may have with your Facebook “friends.” To business people new to social media and networks the word “friending” might seem a bit odd, but that if you learn to view it as similar to handing out your business card or putting someone you meet at a conference in your Outlook contacts it is kind of like that, but online and using different words to describe the process.
- Blue “in” Linkedin Icon – The next icon is the Linkedin Icon (“E” in the image). While substantially smaller than Facebook, the more business-focused Linkedin.com is maybe considered to be a more targeted form of networking than Facebook—because of the heavy business slant. On Linkedin you form “connections” which are the equivalent of the Facebook “friends” terminology. The connections you form on Linkedin are set up in such a way that you can then see the connections of those individuals—and, as a result, you become a part of a very large extended network very rapidly. Voice of Security has its own Linkedin company page and this icon links to that page. You can also connect to Voice of Security President, Vince Regan, and even join a group on Linkedin for Voice of Security—which is an area of Linked in where we keep those users updated on happenings at the Voice of Security site—and sometimes have tangential conversations on related topics at Linkedin.
- Tabbed “+” Google+ Icon – The next icon is the Google Plus Icon (“F” in the image). Maybe surprisingly, Google+ is the youngest of the social media services we use at Voice of Security. While most internet users know Google for their search technology, they were a latecomer to the social media market. However, Voice of Security is set up at Google+ and this icon will lead you to our account there. Like the other services and their special terminologies for creating a group of people who share common interests, Google+ uses the term “circles” to identify people who you network with. In a way it is a bit like taking Linkedin “groups” and “connections” and combining them into one element know in Google+ as their “circle.”
A link at the bottom of the feed window states “Join the Conversation” and clicking on it will take you to Twitter so you can follow us or sign up for your own Twitter Account.
Twitter Feed – Also in the Right sidebar, below the summary piece on our President, you will find the Voice of Security Twitter feed. As you can see in this image (click to enlarge) this area contains recent tweets from Voice of Security to our Twitter Followers. It is provided here on the website as we realize not all of our members follow Twitter and this gives them some recent perspective on how we use twitter.
Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, to both share our content and “endorse” our content.
As you know at this point in the tutorial, all Social Media is about spreading information to those you know or who have like-minded interests and connections to you. So the links at the top of a Voice of Security article make that an easy process for you. Click any of them and you’ll be taken to your account with the services and given their screens/controls to share/like/endorse your member content on Voice of Security.
Our Individual Voice of Security Articles – The third location where we display Social Media links is on our individual articles. These social media links are shown in the image here (click to enlarge). While they look the same as the links outlined in the beginning of our Tutorial, they operate completely differently. With these social media links you are able to use YOUR accounts at the various listed services:
Like our other tutorials our goal has been to help a novice user become a bit more familiar with elements of the Voice of Security site. We hope our review of the Social Media aspects of the Voice of Security site has been helpful to those users.