In the past, one of the most difficult obstacles people faced when living, traveling, or conducting business abroad was connecting with friends, family, and customers worldwide. However, in today’s age of technology, getting in touch with someone on the other side of the planet is only a click away.
Social media is one of the most popular and user friendly methods for the masses to talk with friends, share their thoughts with the world, and learn about current news. While most of us are familiar with sites like Facebook and Twitter, there’s a whole bundle of other social media outlets that are equally as popular in other parts of the world. If you’re looking to expand your social media circle or tap into a new international market, then here are a few sites you might want to look into.
Bebo – Very popular in the United Kingdom. This free site has users from all over Europe, Australia, and the United States.
Habbo – Animated community meets social media. The average user age is 13 to 18 and has most of its users in the UK, Sweden, Spain, Japan, and Finland.
Multiply – An interactive shopping and sharing platform. It is particularly popular in Southeast Asia.
Orkut – Incredibly popular in Brazil. Free site for those over the age of 18 which creates an online scrapbook that can be shared and updated.
Badoo – Quickly gaining popularity in Russia and Brazil. This multi-lingual social site is heavy on geographic features for its users and has a paid feature that upgrades your profile for better visibility.
SkyRock – Popular in French speaking markets, but available in English, German, Spanish, and Dutch as well. Sets up a free blog and has an area specified for musicians.
Netlog – Belgian site targeted at European youth. Featured in over 25 languages.
Tuenti – Dubbed the “Spanish Facebook” and available in dialects like Basque, Galician, and Catalan, as well as English. This site is private and requires an invitation to make a profile.
StudiVZ – Biggest social site in Germany, but also popular in Switzerland and Austria. Acts a student directory for European college students.
Xing – Most popular with French and German speakers. This is a professional networking site similar to LinkedIn. There is a basic free membership and a paid premium level.
Renren – Largest social media site in China. Works directly with Kaixin001, but this site is mostly Chinese college students.
Kaixin001 – Similar to Renren, but most users are white-collar workers.
Hyves.nl – Largest social network in Netherlands. Has features like profiles and games, but also allows for making payments to friends.
Millat Facebook – The facebook of the Muslim community. Popular in most Arab countries.