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6 Ways to Make Better Friends on StumbleUpon

StumbleUpon is one of my favorite sites and a great way to network with those in your industry, meet others who share your interests, discover very interesting sites, and find the latest “interesting” news. One of the sites flaws is that it limits you to having only 200 “friends” or people that you can network with directly. Keeping this in mind, you need to be selective in who you “make friends” with. Here are some pointers to help you along the way when considering adding a member to your friends network.

1. Make sure you’ve got a great profile. People will reciprocate a friendship if they visit your profile and like what they see. A picture is preferable, and an avatar is acceptable, but not having anything just won’t cut it. Also, make sure to write something about yourself in the narrative, and do go through all of the “interest” tabs and select not just your interests, but the interests that you want to connect with people about.

2.See how long they have been a member.
Every profile has a “member since “x” date on it right under the name and stats. Why is this important? If they are just learning the rules and just “checking it out” they may not be much help in getting content that you submit additional exposure.

3. See how long it’s been since they have logged in.
This is listed in green to the upper right of the narrative portion of the profile and just to the left of the “mail” indicator. I recently went to add a “super stumbler” (i.e. very high stats, etc), but then I noticed she hadn’t logged in for 6 weeks. To me this is a sign of someone who is no longer really active in the community (for whatever reason). Best thing to do is to bookmark the profile and check back if you really want to connect with this person.

4. Find those who share your interests. You can do a simple search on the site and then view those profiles. You will get far better results by sending pages to people that they are actually interested in. If someone is there to look at “baby related websites” and you send them a cool “affiliate marketing site”, that’s akin to Social Media spam.

5. Look at their stats.
If they only have 10 favorite websites, chances are they won’t look at what you send them or thumb it. On the other hand if they have 25,000 favorites, they may be hard to connect with. Don’t let that stop you though because such a Stumbler could have a huge impact on you getting your content voted for and get some pretty good exposure within StumbleUpon. They key here is to promote quality content because many serious Stumblers will ignore self promoting, ad laden, or seeming commercial posts.

6. How many friends / fans do they have?
Similar to #5, if the Stumbler isn’t connected with many other Stumblers, then they will have less of an influence on the community. Consider adding top Stumblers as friends but don’t be discouraged if they don’t reciprocate. Many times they will already have their 200 friends and even if they like you, your SU site, or content you submit, they will not be able to add you as a mutual friend.

One other thing to consider to enhance your SU experience and success is to conduct a “friend audit”. Perhaps when you joined SU, you weren’t aware of some of the items listed above and just picked random friends. Now it’s time to make room for quality, relevant SU friends by removing some of the friends that you may have. This isn’t about being cruel, but simply about networking. In the “real world” you only have so much time and you would not network with people in a one-way relationship before moving on. This is no different because in StumbleUpon, you only have so many slots for friends. Use the 6 criteria above to analyze who you are connected to, and then take action. The second time around, you will likely meet more people that sincerely want to network with you, and you might just be amazed at the results.

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