Jason Rand
Jason Rand
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We love seeing real world businesses thrive when they integrate Ning into an online media and marketing strategy or as their homepage. We’ve gathered the top 10 things burgeoning Ning customers are doing to drive success.

1. Your branding, your way

We know your brand is important to your business’ success, and you want your brand equity to work for you. Adopt, use and iterate your own design and color scheme from any of the rest of your web properties. Want to use the same colors as your Twitter stream, or the cover photo of your Facebook page somewhere? No problem. We make it easy for you to get your design perfected with the Ning Design Studio. Use CSS to make design customizations, and other changes. You’re only limited by your imagination, or branding guidelines!

2. Optimized for advertising

If you want to monetize your site by showing advertisements, go for it! You have the ability to run your own ads on your Ning Network, right out of the box. You can easily place ads in the header and footer with special ad boxes available with your community.* Have existing ad partnerships with the likes of Glam Media, Google AdSense or Adbrite? Bring your ad account into your Ning community, embed your ad code, no problem.

3. Use your custom domain URL

We’re all about letting you make your Ning site appear as seamless and integrated as possible. You can use domain mapping* to mask and customize the domain to your liking. Want to use Ning as the community portion of your site? Not a problem.

4. Ning as part of your social strategy

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+. Having a presence on these sites is important. The great thing is that Ning sites play well with others. With social sharing, people on your Ning site can share what they’re talking about from within the community, out to the rest of the world, easily, automatically.

You can also pull into your Ning site RSS feeds from other services, status updates from Facebook, and Tweets from Twitter. It’s all brought into your Ning site, no sweat.

5. Make new pages and build content

Within your Ning site, you can build beautiful new pages by using a blank canvas fitting nicely within the frame of your site. With full HTML support and Javascipt, the pages are 100% part of your members’ experience on your site. You can also copy any of your old webpages into a new page.

6. Passwords are a thing of the past

Enable social sign-in* to let your members frictionlessly sign up and sign in to your Ning site with their social identities: Facebook, Twitter, Google and Yahoo!. Just click to connect. They’re all set.

7. Capture more business through leads

Building up a contact list of perspective customers is a piece of cake. Just embed your own forms directly to your Ning site. Create forms with services like iContact, Google Docs, Silverpop and Constant Contact, and add them to the pages of your Ning Community. Use the list as a way to directly touch people expressing interest in your community.

8. Gather the demographics important to you

Collect demographic and relevant information about people when they join your community. The insights you can gain from your members goes beyond gathering their gender or geographic location.

Collect member names and email addresses, add custom questions and solicit responses in the form of location, gender, one line answers, long form answers, multiple choice, dates, and website addresses. Export the information into a .CSV format anytime, anywhere.

9. Optimize your site for search engines and discovery

We hand you the keys to webmaster options like full control over how sections of your Ning site will appear in search results, and what’s crawled and indexed by search sites like Google. You have full control over your sitemap or you can let it be managed automatically so that you can focus on your community and your business.

10. Leverage Ning for help

Need a hand building your Ning site? Use our Build It For You service and work with our in-house community specialists to create and design a vibrant Ning site to help you meet your goals.

Questions once your site is up and running? We offer great customer support through Ning Help and Creators, a Ning community for our customers.

* Feature is available in Ning Plus and Pro.