Oprah Winfrey has touched millions of women and families through her talk show, book club and magazine. It's no surprise she's built a strong online community as well. I don't tend to watch Oprah but caught the tail end of a show over Thanksgiving break. I was amazed to see how well she's translated her show online.
For example, Oprah explores Food online by featuring chef Cristina Ferrare. Food is a natural vertical for Oprah as she has been upfront about her various diets for almost forever. Visitors can access recipes, menus and videos of Cristina "cooking class" online. Check out turkey 101 here.
Oprah.com fans benefit from a wide variety of arts, culture, health, fitness, religious and psychology experts via Oprah & Friends Radio. Online podcasts are attached to each expert. You can listen to advice for home design on a budget here or hear Dr. Maya Angelou talk about women in country music here.
For those fans looking to connect with each other, you can join Oprah's online community to participate in message board discussions or register your blog. Currently, over 5,800 blogs are linked to Oprah's online community.
The site still has a long way to go – it doesn't seem quite as well mashed and video-oriented as the web site for the Rachael Ray show. Nevertheless, Oprah's online community is alive and strong. I'm sure it will only get better.