Monday, August 25, 2008

MySpace Monday: Connecting with potential sources - Part 1

You should now have a separate professional MySpace page. You've tricked it out and convinced your normal friends to add you.

It's like being a politician. You had to start by galvanizing your base.

Now make MySpace work for you. Think about the type of people you'd like to connect with. Do a little networking. Add current sources and work toward adding potential sources. It isn't easy to be comprehensive, and you probably won't be, but if you're focused, you'll find a lot of interesting locals and people you might want to talk to now or later.

This week's topic: Adding new friends to your professional MySpace page.

Tip No. 1: Come up with a target.
Structure you're search for new friends based in the type of stories you'd like to write. Musicians, comedians and filmmakers are easy to find with little work. Venues, fellow writers, artists, college athletes, high school students or any other source base will take more time to find.

Tip No. 2a: Search for musicians.
Click the link for Music followed by the link for Top Artists. You can then search for bands within the radius of your zip code. Despite a few incorrect listings, you'll find unsigned, indie and major label artists from your area roughly organized by popularity. Be wary of the selected distance. Just 100 listings from the three categories show up. New or lesser known bands may not show up if you select within 20 miles of downtown Sacramento. Bands from Oakland will show up if you search within 50 miles. Decide how much time you want to spend searching. There are a little more than 1,000 relatively active bands within the greater Sacramento area. If you want to be hyperlocal, search within five or 10 miles. Then, categorize in groups as small as Elk Grove bands or Davis bands. More on categories next week.

Be aware: some local DJs and rappers have non-music pages and won't show up in the MySpace Music listings.

Tip No. 2b: Search for comedians.

Click the link for Comedy followed by the link for Comedian Search. Comedians can be searched in the same way as musicians. Select a distance, type in a zip code and sort by the amount of friends to find a starting list of comedians to add as friends. You'll find almost 20 active comedians within 25 miles of downtown Sacramento. Local comedians can also found among the top friends lists on the MySpace pages of comedy clubs. Local comedians are listed in the top friends lists of Laughs Unlimited, Punch Line Sacramento, Bistro 33 and Louie's Cocktail Lounge.

Tip No. 2c: Search for filmmakers.
Click the link for Movies followed by the link for Indie Film and then the link for Top Filmmakers. Filmmakers can then be searched within a selected radius. The search function doesn't look like it's working right now. I'll update this post tomorrow with examples of a recent search.

More to come tomorrow. Part two will offer tips to find groups that MySpace does not categorize as easily as musicians, comedians and filmmakers.

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