How & Why YOU Should Build an Online Community

    So I’ve been reading Chris Brogan’s and Julien Smith’s Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust. I personally find the book more geared toward the social media novice and consequently prefer Wikinomics and Groundswell for books on Web 2.0 marketing philosophy. That said, there are a few good nuggets in Trust Agents. Specifically, it discusses the importance (and capabilities) for anyone to be an online “connector,” building a personal trust reputation and expertise among others in Web 2.0. The book emphasizes building online “gathering places” by “being the priest; building the church.” It raises important considerations: “(1) How do you figure out what kind of church your community needs? (2) When you build it, will they come?” (pp. 162-163). Do your research – enough digging around online will give you the answers to these thoughts for your specific needs.

    These fundamental questions and approaches can help you achieve many goals. Want to build your business? That’s how. Want to grow your social network? There you go. Want to become a sought-after, niche topical expert? That’s the path.

    By whatever power is bestowed upon me by Web 2.0, I hereby ordain all my readers – go spread the good word and build community.

    – Jake Aull,