Registering your blog on Technorati

When you sign up for the Technorati web site, you have the option of “Claiming” your blog.  Just go to your profile page and fill in your blog’s info at the bottom.  The smart computer at Technorati will email you a confirmation code such as:

4BF8Q2HZAM4H

Go back to your account page on Technorati and follow the instructions in the email.  You will be required to publish a blog post with the confirmation code.  Once the blog is posted, simply click the “Verify Claim Token” button on your account page and your blog is on its way to being listed on Technorati.com!

The Hazards of Social Media

While the use of social media to communicate with your client has tremendous benefits, it also has significant hazards.  The incredibly quick publishing times associated with social media along with the its casual nature encourages mistakes.  Mistakes made in social media can be costly and embarrassing.

Social media, by its nature, is a more casual than traditional media.  Don’t let the informality of the medium lull you into carelessness.  Informal tweets, posts, and instagrams that may be appropriate for a private citizen can be completely inappropriate for a company.  If you want to have informal posts, that’s fine, but create a separate, semi-personal account from which to make them.  Some companies want to have not only a professional corporate profile, but semi-professional profiles of their key employees to make the company seem more personable.  Be careful, however, that the posts on the semi-personal profiles adhere to the company’s standards.

Another peril of social media is its ability to multiply mistakes.  In March of 2011, Scott Bartosiewicz, who worked as an Account Supervisor for New Media Strategies, the company Chrysler Motor Company used to handle their social media, used inappropriate language on Chrysler’s twitter account.  The mistweet was reported around the world within a day.  Mr. Bartosiewicz and New Media Strategies were immediately fired by Chrysler.  The lesson here is to double and triple check your content and destination before you hit the send button.

Mistakes are forever.  As we saw in the previous example, Mr. Bartosiewicz may have attempted to delete the tweet, but it was too late.  It was seen and retweeted, reposted, screenshotted, and Google cached.  Even today, almost a year after the incident, a search on “Scott Bartosiewicz” or “Chrysler tweet” will result in many, many stories about what happened.  If you are trying to build followers for your business, then this is a risk you must understand.  You will at some point make a social media mistake and if you have done well in building followers, hundreds, thousands, or even millions of people will see it.  Again, double and triple check your content and destination before you hit the send button.

I hear from my customers that their social media efforts require too much time each day and that the results are too small.  Have patience.  Your company won’t be Starbucks overnight.  Social media works using a slow, compounding effect.  Over a period of months, if your content is interesting, your following will increase until you have the numbers you want.  Note the qualifier I used:  “if your content is interesting”.  You certainly won’t read or watch anything that is boring and neither will your customers.

Lack of responsiveness is also a danger.  Social media is a two way street.  Your customers have the ability to interact with you directly and expect that you will respond.  Use this as a way to find out what your customers want and as a way to build good will.  Nothing says I don’t care about my customers louder than unanswered posts on the company’s own social media pages.

There are no shortcuts in social media.  It also takes time to build up a long list of followers and solid web history.  If you are consistent about posting to Facebook, Twitter, your blog, and whatever other channel you use, your search result will improve and customers will feel more comfortable that you are reliable business.  A little thoughtful time spent each day will result in much more exposure down the road.

Social Reach and Passion Assessment

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You will be answering:

1. How big is your digital footprint – fans, followers, blog subscribers -
compared to the footprint of your competitors?

2. What is the likelihood that your company, brand or product is being
discussed or that it will be discussed in the social realm?

In July 2011, Microsoft Advertising and Advertiser Perceptions surveyed
social media marketers in six countries around the world. They found that
48% of social marketing budgets are geared toward new fan and follower
acquisition on popular social networking platforms such as Facebook and
Twitter. What the survey also found is that marketers value social platform
presence more highly than advertising on these same platforms. For
example, 74% of marketers thought it was very important to have a presence
on Facebook, but only 57% felt the same way about advertising there.

Some Definitions
Social Footprint:
Your brand’s presence on social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter,
YouTube, blogs, Foursquare, etc.

Social Reach:
Estimated number of potential or existing customers you can reach
through your Social Footprint

Social Frequency:
The number of times you engage with your Social Reach via your Social
Footprint

Social Amplification:
The number of times your Social Reach engages and shares with the
content published through your Social Footprint
Let’s start with some definitions:

http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1008634

Did you Know?

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So, what do you think about all the hoopla surrounding social media these days!!??

 

I don’t think you can go for a few minutes without seeing it on the front cover of a magazine, or in the table of contents of your favorite publication. Chase it down – go for it – and, see how you can use it in your business!

 

Whether it’s the front cover of your Facebook account or Twitter account or even on your LinkedIn account, just take it and run with it! See what happens when you commit on your computer accounts.

 

Let me know what happens after a week of posting to Facebook on a regular basis, or up-loading to Twitter a few times a day or up-loading to your Linked In Account! I can’t wait to hear your responses!

Did You Know?

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Facebook accounts for 22% of all time spent on the internet?
If Facebook were a country, it would be the third largest?
YouTube is the second largest most searched – topping out the website? Do you know who owns it – Google!!!
Facebook tops Google for weekly traffic?
What is 4 minutes and 26 seconds – that is the amount of time it takes for 100 hours of YouTube to be uploaded?

53% of Twitter users recommend companies and products in their tweets

74% of B2B companies aggressively using Facebook in social media marketing

57% of companies have acquired customers through LinkedIn

75% of small businesses in the U.S. engage in social media marketing

$3.1 billion will be spent on social media marketing in 2014

B2B spending on social media marketing will rise 67% over the next 3 years

20% of all website visitors to company sites come from social media

2 out 3 people that follow a brand on Twitter will purchase from that brand

66% of marketers saw a rise in search engine rankings due to social media marketing

Make a Lasting Twitter Impression by Being More Social!

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Everywhere you look; there is an article about social media. I read an interesting article in the Orlando Business Journal this week, by Bill Orben, about how important it is to listen first, prior to jumping into the Twitter pool!

Many times, companies make the mistake of throwing the Twitter duties – think 140 characters or less – to the intern (who, when she/he leaves, will have no allegiance to the company!). Even if this is the case, the job should be overseen by a senior manager. Twitter is timeless and once your words are out there, they are out there!

Twitter has only been around for 5 years. In my personal opinion, Twitter is the best place for up to the minute news. Set your smartphone to Twitter, or open a new window on your computer.

Twitter is not an area for broadcast, but rather a place to have a two way conversation. If a customer has a complaint, and you respond to that complaint in a timely manner, it will show the universe that you are flexible. And, able to respond to challenges and special situations even if they aren’t particularly flattering to your company. How quickly you respond is almost as important as how you respond.

Below are some helpful sites:

http://radar.oreilly.com/sarahm/

http://socialmediavoice.com/

http://globalneighbourhoods.net/

I’d love the opportunity to help you – call me! 407-455-4699

Interesting Social Media Facts

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I had no idea when I was invited to a 3 day Social Media Conference last summer at one of the Caribe Resorts in Orlando that it would turn into a new career path for me. I had no idea when I joined this Toastmasters club last September that my newest business partners would come from the membership.

George and I met for a one on one back in September and I told him my plans to begin a social media business. He asked if I wanted to join forces and begin a company, which we named Orion Social Marketing. Orion is the name of a constellation and our tag line is “taking your social media to the stars!”

Social media is to businesses what print media was to 15 years ago. Social media almost ensures that your business will still be in business in 5 years. Social media is not a goal, but rather should support your other business goals and objectives.

There are very few businesses who have not grasped social media – utilities, manufacturing & government. Other than those, all businesses should be looking at utilizing social media, considering the fact that they probably want to still be in business in 5 years.

CEO’s are now joining the social networking sites and it is quickly becoming a CEO agenda item. 4 out of 5 companies in US using social media and most have only 1-3 years’ experience.
We are all familiar with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, but how many of these social media websites are you familiar with?
• Scvngr – like a scavenger hunt –doing challenging things at places
• Polyvore – fashion and make-up
• GetGlue – check into movies, TV & music
• Foodspotting – find & recommend dishes, not just restaurants
• Path – the smart journal that helps you share life with the ones you love
• Oink – discover and experience great things around you
I’d like to just review a few statistics: for those of you who are wondering about the power of Google+, consider this – it took only 16 days for them to reach 10 million users as compared to Facebook taking almost 900 days and Twitter almost 800 days!

Consider this – 53.5 billion minutes were spent on Facebook world wide in May 2011.

Completed review of The Compound Effect

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I had originally planned to review one chapter at time, but the first review seemed more like a book report, so I have decided to just review the book as a whole.  Since I have said a lot of what I wanted to say about this book in the first part, consider this an addendum and read the previous part of the review as well.

While I was reading The Compound Effect, I kept being reminded of Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich.  This is not a bad thing.  Think and Grow Rich is one of the most important personal development books ever written, but it is starting to show its age.  The content is still relevant, but the language is becoming archaic.

The Compound Effect is a restatement of the principals in Think and Grow Rich in language that is easily understood by today’s reader.  For example, Think and Grow Rich explains its principles with stories and examples.  So does The Compound Effect.  Early in Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill explains the importance of “Desire”.  Early in his book, Darren Hardy asks the reader about their “Why”.  Napoleon Hill talks about “Persistence” being needed for success.  Darren Hardy calls is “Consistency”.  Napoleon Hill talks about the “Mastermind”.  Darren Hardy call them “Success Buddies”, and so on.

Even though the books deal with the same topics, The Compound Effect describes the principles in a different manner and reenforces their message.  Mr. Hardy also writes in a style that is easy to understand and includes illustrations to aid the reader.  People may be deceived by its simple language, however.  Don’t be.  This is a book dense with ideas.  In addition, there are exercises throughout the book that allow the user to put the book’s principles into effect.

I highly recommend the reader try the exercises.  The ones that were the most eye opening to me were the tracking exercises.  As a direct result of this book, I now keep a notebook with me to write down anything important.  That alone reminds me to perform important tasks in a timely manner.  Also, the money tracking exercise is an eye opener to everyone, even people that believe themselves thrifty.

Even though I consider The Compound Effect a summary of Think and Grow Rich, it is, nonetheless, a very worthwhile read.  The language is clear and concise.  The book explains the principles in Think and Grow Rich in a different way.  The exercises are a valuable addition.  Anyone interested in personal grown and especially those that were turned off by the language of Think and Grow Rich will find this an excellent addition to their library and a book worth studying.

Facebook Timeline – Innovation or Failure?

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My first reaction when I saw Facebook’s new profile format, Timeline, was “What the hell is this?”.  The format has changed from a 1 + 2 column format (1 main column and 2 smaller side columns) to a 2 + 1 format (2 main columns with 1 small side column).  What this has done is made the interface less intuitive.

With the old interface the interface was straight forward.  Control items were on the left, content in the center, and ads on the right.  In Timeline control and content elements mixed in the two main columns and ads are, again, on the right.  The place to enter your status updates is no longer at the top of your profile.  It is in one of the columns.  It took me a few seconds to find it the first time.  The top spot is replace with a large (spanning 2 columns) photo from your profile.

The organization of the columns is chronological.  There is a vertical line separating the two main columns that gives the new interface its name.  Status updates are added in alternating columns and connected to a dot on the timeline with a small triangle.  This does allow for two posts in the same amount of space the old interface would have only allowed for one.  However, this is confusing and unnatural.  People are used to scanning down the page for content.  Now people have to scan down the page in a zig-zag pattern.  This is just not intuitive.

Another annoyance is the addition of new automatically created content elements.  Your list of friends an element in one of the columns of your timeline.  Games you have recently played are in one of the columns of your timeline.  Recent likes, places, activity, and apps used are all automatically added to your timeline.  So, in addition to having to zig zag down the page to find status updates, you now have to decide if the updates are real or auto generated.

There is one feature I like about Timeline.  You can choose to have an update span the two columns.  That is a nice way to emphasize a post that was not available in the old interface.  Unfortunately, this is the only feature I like.

C’mon, Facebook.  I understand a business has to innovate to survive, but I can see in a glance that this is your New Coke.

INC. Magazine Social Media Article Review

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I read a fascinating article in INC Magazine by Hollis Thomases, President and CEO of Web Advantage. She explained how poor social media up-dates can hurt customer loyalty and passion for your brand. Good outsourcing can help your business and brand grow!

It seems that every other person you meet at a business event claims to be the social media guru! How on earth do you decide if you need to outsource your social media or trust your minimum wage assistant to up-date your social media accounts.  If the later, are you watching over her shoulder to make sure that she is not hurting your business  and branding, and in fact helping it!?!

If you choose to outsource your social media, there are several things to look for in addition to brand appreciation, enthusiasm and true advocacy for your product or service.  Make sure your potential partners:

  • Are aware of all new social media innovations
  • Understand  FCC Disclosure laws
  • Development and implement a social media editorial calendar and produce content in a variety of formats
  • Be properly empowered by you, the client, with the authority to act, react on your brand’s behalf
  • Demonstrate clear competency in all areas of social media
  • Monitor, test and master ever-evolving social media tools

Additionally, find out who will be doing your up-dates and follow their social media accounts. Make sure they are not into bad mouthing your competitors!

Just remember that when it comes to social media, it’s safer to experiment with outsourcing. Just remember:  You own the outcome!

Guest contributor:  Annie Wintrerbottom, Co-founder Orion Social Marketing

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