It still seems to be almost a week never goes by without an invitation to another networking / social networking/ connections platform that is going to be the next best thing since sliced bread or at least since Google +.
But how do you know if you should join or not?
Revisit (or start) with what communication objectives you have set for your personal brand. Just because someone in your network has invited you to join Ushi.com for example it may not have any relevance to what you are trying to achieve in connecting and networking. (Ushi.com by the way is for networking professionally in China).
Three things to determine before you sign up for the next network;
1. Who is your target audience? Get very, very clear on this and gather as much information as you can about who you want to reach.
2. Spend some time on the network to see who is already on there. Do they fit the profile you drew up from Q1?
3. How many of your current network are on there already? There is nothing worse than getting the label of 'Johnny No Mates' by joining a new network and having 3 connections. Many of the better designed ones allow you immediately to download existing networks and databases or even make direct connections. That way you can connect with everyone you already know and make it appear you are in the know immediately.
The key with any online networking is not a case of my list is bigger than your list, it's the value you offer to your network in terms of help and relevant information.
Better to have 200 targeted connections who are good prospects for business, referrals, resources etc than 2,000 social media gurus or online at home business experts!
Connect with me on LinkedIn if it's a fit http://www.linkedin.com/in/paulcopcutt