[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2bGdprMfDQ&w=560&h=349]"Build your network now, before you need it." You've heard that advice before. It's pretty standard for anyone who's looking for a job. But given that everyone is now a publisher through social media, our network and our "channel" are becoming one, says Julien Smith, co-author of Trust Agents and blogger at InOverYourHead.net. The definition of "friends" on our different social networks is heavily misleading. An individual really can't handle more than 150 relationships in his or her "real life," and most of us have far more than that on Facebook and Twitter. These connections are both part of our network and our channel. (If you’re interacting with people through social media, Smith says, you have a channel.) Like your network, you need to build your channel now so you can use it in the future. "Controlling your future means controlling your channel," says Smith. To get people to pay attention to your channel, you need to build something for a large group of people so that it matters and becomes part of their existence. Are you creating something that matters to people, that is at the center of their existence? If you’re not, how can you be? asks Smith.