Content communities are similar to social networks. On certain content communities once you have registered, you get a home page that you can can customize.
On these content communities you can make connections with friends and people who shares the same interest as you. However, content communities are focused on sharing a particular type of content.
Flickr is based around the sharing of photos and is the most popular service of its kind. Members can upload their photos to the Flickr website and choose whether to make them public so that everyone can view them or they can just share it with friends and family that belongs to their network. Thousands of groups have formed on Flickr around common interest. You can find groups dedicated to particular graffiti artists, towns, sports and animals.
If you work for a well-known brand it is worth taking a look to see if there is a Flickr group about it. There are groups for motorbike brands, music groups, consumer electronic brands, etc. Flickr was bought by Yahoo! in 2005 for an estimated US $30 million.
YouTube is the world’s largest video sharing network with over 100 million videos viewed every day. Members of YouTube can upload videos to share and even create their own channel of favourite videos. YouTube has a feature that makes it easy for users to share videos by simply “cut and paste” code from the YouTube website to their blogs and websites. That means that you can display YouTube videos on your website without hosting any of the videos.
You can find thousands of short films from people’s own camera phones, video cameras and even webcams on YouTube. There’s even clips from TV shows and movies hosted on the service. Some people use YouTube to record video blogs better know as “Vlogs”. Google bought YouTube for $1.65 billion in October 2006.
Digg is a news and content community. Members can submit links to news stories that they think will be of interest to other members. If other members find interest in the news stories, they can vote for the link submitted by you. Once a story has gained a critical number of votes it will be moved to the front page of Digg where it will receive wider attention from members as well as more casual visitors to the site. This can increase traffic to your website or blog tremendously. Digg claims to get around 20 million unique visitors every month
Content communities often displays characteristics of what are known as folksonomies. This term refers to the way that information is organized. In a folksonomy the information or content is “tagged” with one word descriptions. Anyone can add a piece of content and see what other users have tagged. del.icio.us is a social bookmarking services that replaces the favourites folder of your favourite web browser and is a perfect example of a folksonomy. Content communities such as Flickr, YouTube and blogs generally make use of this approach of tagging content to make it easily found.
By using and optimizing your profile on popular content communities can greatly enhance the visibility of your website and blog. Millions of people view content communities every day. It is another way of promoting yourself and your brand.
If you require more information on content communities, leave a comment below.