Have you invited others to the Active Rain Network? Did you show them the manual? Why not? Because there isn't one..... yet. Are you giving them instructions on what to do next or where to go for help? I have spent quite a few hours this past week helping those I've invited, get setup in Active Rain. I found myself wishing there was a manual or instructional page to help my invitees.
This is for all the New Member Professionals (I don't like the term "newbie", being one myself) to help you get up and running on the Active Rain Network. This is not an official manual, just what I have put together to help you.
So you have joined the network, now what?
What should I do before I start?
- Bookmark Active Rain or your Profile page as a favorite
- Write down or remember your login name and password
- Always login first to leave comments, posts, and edit profile etc.
How do I setup my profile?
You should now be logged into Active Rain. You need to setup your profile page. It's simple, yet very important.
Follow these simple instructions:
- Next to the word Profile, Click on (Edit)
- Add (Upload) your photo, just click on upload picture
- Add your Address, Phones, Email, Website Etc.
- In the "Description Box", add your Value - Statement (This is what people see under your photo)
- Add "About Us" or "About Me" you can change by clicking on "Rename Selection" Type what it tells you
- Do the Same with "Areas of Expertise" and "Testimonials" (Look at other members profiles to get ideas)
- You can add photos, links, key bullet points, change fonts, spellcheck and more, just use this toolbar below.
(Hover your mouse over each graphic, and it will tell you what each icon does)
***IMPORTANT NOTE*** DON'T FORGET TO SAVE PROFILE BEFORE EXITING!!
Now that my profile is setup, what next?
- Learn to use the navigational tools in Active Rain: First is the "Power Bar"
At the top of your screen, you will see the options below, here's the breakdown of these:
- Q&A - Questions asked by others inside and outside the Active Rain Network
- Search - Allows you to search Profiles, Blogs, Comments and Groups
- Groups - There are over 100 groups you can join
- Blogs - This is the dashboard of all Blog Posts by members on Active Rain
- My Home - Takes you to your Home Page (Not your profile)
- Logout - This is where you logout or into Active Rain
- This Menu Bar also shows how many current members there are and how many are online
"Step 5" JOIN SOME GROUPS!
What Groups Should I join?
This is a matter of preference. Look or "Search" through the groups and decide which one's are of interest to you. I recommend:
- Active Rain Newbies ( Great group for beginners and new members)
- Blogging Etiquette 101 The Do's and Don'ts of effective blogging)
- Active Rain MLS Online (If you're a Realtor and want to post listings)
- Localism Beta (understanding how localism.com works with Active Rain and it's importance)
- Localism Brainstorming ( share ideas on information to post to localism.com)
- Real Estate Technology ( get tips, tricks and techniques using the lastest technologies)
Once you have selected the groups you want to join, you can access them from the left side of your screen ( see Below )
What other Navigation tools are there?
You will find the following navigation tools on the left side of your screen, these are for:
Your Name appears here (Only When You Are Logged In)
My Home brings you to your home page in Active Rain
My Profile is your Active Rain Profile (Use Edit to Change or Update)
My Blog is your Active Rain Blog - Only One Blog with many posts
Click on (Post) to create a new post
My Settings allows you to modify your Active Rain Account (email etc)
Groups - These are the links to the different groups you have joined
My Comments - Your comments you have made on others posts
Points Summary - This is the Breakdown of "your" Points earned
Statistics - You'll have to click on this to see for yourself (you'll likeit!)
Blog Bookmarks - There is a bookmark option under every post.
You can bookmark the ones you really like, and access them from here later
(You can also rate posts 1 - 5, and it is recommended that you do so)
Invite Others - Allows you to email invite other collegues and members
Link To ActiveRain - Get points when you put links back to Active Rain on websites
Associations - These are the members who have chosen to make you an associate.
You can add "Associates" too. Just click on "Add Associate" above their photo on their profile page.
Here are some other valuable blog posts I have found that should help you get started. You can also do a
search to find ANY TOPIC you would like. Need Help? Do a search or create a post. This is the place to be!
2009 Getting Started On ActiveRain (NEW - Added 7/4/09)
Best Blogging Resources (NEW - Added 9/10/07)
The Active Rain Community and Info
It will cover things like "creating posts", and where to post them. SEO, RSS Feeds, Localism.com, Points Breakdown, Intermediate HTML code and using graphics, Using Tags, Creating Links, Adding Listings, Marketing and more!
I know this is a bit long, but hopefully this will help you and others to get started.
Got Questions? Give me a click! :-)