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The Role of Windows Live Spaces in Business

written by: Lucinda Watrous•edited by: Bill Bunter•updated: 11/12/2010

Windows Live Spaces is a Microsoft invention to make its way on the social networking bandwagon. Unlike some of the other sites in our series, this one may have some more practical uses for business, but we'll leave the decision to you. Read on to find out more about Windows Live Spaces.

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    What is Windows Live Spaces?

    WindowsLive Windows Live Spaces is a new social networking front provided by MSN and Hotmail--Microsoft. Associated with Windows Live ID's, users of Windows Live Messenger, formally known as MSN Messenger, and Hotmail users already have access to these accounts. The problem is, many of them don't know it. The network size may be large in terms of users of Microsoft products, but few people actually make use of the Windows Live Space they have.

    Similar to MySpace and Facebook, users have their own profile where they can add photos, blog posts, and lists. There are modules users can add, which are similar to the applications used on MySpace and Facebook. Users have control over their layout, but personalization is definitely limited in comparison.

    With websites like MySpace and Facebook, there does not seem to be much point in paying attention to the Windows Live Space account, and this could be a major reason why the audience is much smaller.

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    Business Mindset

    While business owners and internet marketers are able to make profiles here--hopes of gaining a consumer base like with other social networks should not be counted on. The fact is many people do not spend time here, so the people businesses may reach out to are more limited here. This could mean even more targeted traffic, but the likelihood of the issue is business owners will have a smaller audience to reach out to, an even smaller targeted audience, and likely no return on investment of time spent.

    While business owners could connect with consumers, connect with related businesses, and conduct research with the other social networking sites, it seems less likely for it to work well using this network.

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    Should you use it?

    Honestly, there does not seem to be too many benefits to a business use for this network. Yes, it is nice for personal social networking reasons, but it doesn't seem to offer much for business at all. It's not a bad idea per se, though it seems more time could be vested in other places and yield higher results.

    Does this mean it is a bad idea for your business? If your entire consumer base runs on Windows Live Messenger, then obviously it will work better for you than those who have a consumer base not using the service. The bottom line is the decision needs to be based on the specifics of your business. Use your best judgement, and if you see it is not working well, move on to something else entirely.

Social Networking and the Workplace

Does allowing your employees to participate in social networking activities place your business security at risk? In this six part series, learn about five popular social networking websites and what harm they may or may not cause to your business security.
  1. Social Networking and the Workplace: Social Networking Policy
  2. The Role of MySpace in Business
  3. Facebook for Business: Good Idea?
  4. The Role of Twitter in Business
  5. The Role of LinkedIn in Business
  6. The Role of Windows Live Spaces in Business