VP, social media, TechTarget
Brooks has successfully lead the building out of TechTargetâ€™s popular social communities.
Since launching in 1999, online publisher TechTarget has steadily grown its network of tech-specific Web sites with ITKnowledgeExchange.com at the core. The social networking site, which is supported entirely by user-generated content, currently receives one million unique visitors and features between 5,000 and 6,000 pieces of unique content each month.
Behind the companyâ€™s fast-growing social media development is Sean Brooks, who has a lot more in store for the flagship Web site in 2010. â€śMy big focus now is monetizing the content that weâ€™ve created on the site,â€ť he says. â€śWe want to offer vendors opportunities to engage with the community, and then combine the conversational marketing with the lead-gen programs that we offer.â€ť
Brooks attributes ITKnowledgeExchange.comâ€™s success to the way itâ€™s positioned by combining branding elements and offering multiple engagement opportunities. Not only can users submit their own content, but they can also ask technical questions about current IT products and get them answered by vendors. â€śWe also host live chats between vendors and users,â€ť he says. â€śAnd we try to have contests that urge people to be a part of our community, but theyâ€™ll also have fun along the way.â€ť
TechTargetâ€™s 60+ Web sites have also benefited from its audiencesâ€™ increased use of Twitter and the company is working to integrate social media elements into all of its sites. It also uses LinkedIn and other social networking sites to send messages and draw users back to the site.â€śOur goal is to monetize our content no matter what,â€ť he says. â€śWe want to push people to our site, so that interactions take place on our site.â€ť
But more importantly, Brooks adds, what TechTarget offers its audience has to be quality content. User-generated content on ITKnowledgeExchange.com is moderated and posts that are inappropriate or that donâ€™t serve the audience are deleted. â€śIf you can create and then push out quality content, and then have it link back to your site, itâ€™s a great way to build brand recognition,â€ť he says.
VITAL STATS: TechTargetâ€™s flagship site ITKnowledgeExchange.com currently receives one million unique visitors each month.