Thursday, 20 November 2008

SchoolTogetherNow - new social network for schools, part of a growing trend for niche social networks

www.schooltogethernow.com is a new (British) social networking site for parents, children, teachers, schools - aiming to bring the school community together.

The pitch: "SchoolTogetherNow aims to create more of a community spirit around schools. It allows busy parents the chance to communicate online via Emails or in the Live Chat rooms when perhaps it would be too late to do so over the telephone. There is also the popular Forum which allows parents to share tips and advice and give recommendations on anything from birthday party venues to school uniform suppliers (or even to critique last night’s Desperate Housewives!)"

schooltogethernow.com homepage

The site offers further opportunities for parents to derive value including classified ads and job boards, whilst allowing schools themselves to tap into their associated communities. Schooltogethernow.com also aims to engage children through online Games, the ability to Upload Pictures, Podcasts and a Live Chat room where they can talk with their friends.

As the principles of social networking have become more ubiquitous, sites around specific niches have become more common - and SchoolTogetherNow is the latest example. From Dogster for dogs, Dopplr for business travel, MyChurch and many others, every niche seems to have someone trying to make it social. Brands have also used bespoke networks / communities to host their target audiences around specific themes with Gurgle and BeingGirl good examples. It may not always work, but if a site can develop an interactive, sticky community around a specific topic then it becomes very powerful, because high engagement = high potential to tap into the niche community for insight, interaction and advertising.

Related posts
Pitchero - new social network for Sport clubs

Tripsay - a new travel social network
BA Metrotwin - the London-New York social network
Isuki.com - new dating social network
Financial Times Executive Forum - a social network for business leaders

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