Social media is a superb vehicle for connections between family and friends. During times when it has many marketing opportunities there is a more personal side to social media worth exploring.

For instance, families used to connect only through the occasional letter that may be passed around from one family member to another and photos of grandchildren were passed along in Christmas cards.

And so today social media is having an impact on how scattered families can remain connected. Beyond the useful emails, the use of social media can allow families to access a number of methods to help keep others up-to-date on family news.

Slide Shows – this is a pic tool that can allow you to send highlights of a special event in the life of your family such as a birthday party, anniversary or family trip. In a matter of moments your family can gain access to a visually pleasing presentation of your most immediate adventures.

Social Networks – many social networks provide a privacy setting that only allow approved members into your personal network. For all intents and purposes this type of network grants you the privacy you may desire in sharing family news, audio, video and photos in one convenient setting. Other family members can also set up a privacy account, which grants a no-cost alternative to family connections.

YouTube – Video sites like YouTube can be repositories for family videos. In most cases, however, the video info remains available to the public for viewing. If privacy is a primary concern there are programs such as BigUpload that’ll allow you to host a video or other massive file and choose email addresses to receive access to the files for download.

Family Forums or Blogs – the use of a forum or blog can allow the various personalities of your family to shine through. They can also allow you to coordinate likely gatherings or gift exchanges. Due to the dynamics of family there might even be the occasional bit of tension – even cyberspace cannot change that.

The use of social media offers great opportunity for families to enjoy the privacy you need with the connectedness you desire.

When you participate in a social network you can also branch out to visit other friends without disrupting the privacy you need. If you desire a more public profile you should check with the social network to see if they allow a second account. If they do, the second account can be used to keep in contact with a more public audience.

Social media provides a unique opportunity to connect families in the 21st century. Perhaps it is an idea worth pursuing.