Category Archives: Web

SERIOUSLY, Walk Away From Your Gadgets [INFOGRAPHIC]

Walk Away From Your Gadgets

We are living in an increasingly Digital world which is really be an amazing thing, especially for those that are interested in having a constant source of news and information.  Content shared,  by way of online channels are accessed at a much quicker rate of speed than traditional online media due to social media.   This was very evident in the recent hurricane that hit the east coast and the political campaigns, both of which were sharing information online at a much quicker rated of speed than traditional online and radio media.  We are officially a connected world.

 

One of the things that we should be cognizant of is the benefits of allowing ourselves the opportunity to TUNE out the onslaught of the constant flow of digital content. As a Digital Marketer, this can be a challenge due to our need to be constantly tuned in.

 

About a year ago I was feeling close to the information overload stage due to being constantly plugged in to so much content. This is when I took a bit of a step back and disengaged from a few channels.   I stopped posting to many social media channels, removed myself from Klout and took a break from Empire Avenue. I took this time to think about the digital channels that I was engaged with and evaluate how I could best maximize my workflow without dedicating so much time to online channels and being constantly plugged in.  This time gave me an opportunity to evaluate how much time was needed to effectively manage all of my digital media channels and most importantly granted me the opportunity to realize the benefits of unplugging sometimes.  I’ve found that unplugging can be a good thing because it allows a fresh perspective.

 

The time away allowed me to organize my time more effectively, minimize some of the digital channels that were not beneficial to my brand and most importantly it presented the opportunity to turn off my brain to the constants onslaught of information. So, now I especially make a conscious choice to unplug at bedtime and it has allowed me  just enough time needed, to start the next day with a clear head minus the technology overload feeling.

 

I seems that more and more people are not utilizing time to step away from their gadgets, even at bedtime. Take a look at the infographic below to see exactly how much time is spent on computer gadgets, even at bedtime.

 

Please Include Attribution to OnlinePsychologyDegree.net With This Graphic Badgets in Bed Infographic

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2012: More Spend Toward Online Marketing [Infographic]

OnlineMarketingSpend
As we know online methods of marketing are being used more than ever and as time goes on more and more of the budget will be allocated toward online methods of advertising and marketing. Mobile marketing spend will play a much larger role in marketing budgets moving forward.  Take look at the infographic below to give you an idea of who will be spending what in which areas:



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#Technology and #Entrepreneurship: The Answer To The Recession?? [Infographic]

entrepreneurship

 

We are in a recession, no doubt about that and it is tough. However recession and a tough economy can bring out the entrepreneur spirit in many people.  In tough times people are almost forced to step it up.   Some of the greatest companies in the world were created during tough economic times.  There are many, one of those companies is Apple, can you believe that?

 

 

Amazing stuff!  It seems that due to our own economic downturn we could very well be in the middle of our own entrepreneurship boom and I think a lot of that is fueled by the super quick growth of technology.  Take a look at the infographic below to give you an idea of where innovation is happening:

 


social management blog

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#Google+ Just WENT #SocialSearch: You’d Better Reach OUT and Grasp This Platform

GooglePlus

I have been speaking of the newness of Social Media as we know it now, all of the Social Media Channels that we should be using and how we should be rocking our blogs .  These are definitely channels that all business owner should have been using for a while and that we should be comfortable with by now. However we all do know that  its not the case because there are still many companies that have not reached out to grasp this new and exiting age of social media.  You all know the companies that I speak of, the ones that are still heavily depended on their fax machines, the companies that are still using AOL and that have absolutely no social media presence .

Not all companies have been totally lax in their grasp of technologies, some are a bit more up to speed on things. There are plenty of companies that have been utilizing SEO strategies and doing quite well.  Well now here comes the kicker, companies that are using SEO exlusively and companies that are not using social media or SEO at all, are about to have the rug pulled out from under them in the form of Google+

I know there is a huge back and forth about Google+ and its importance, blah, blah, blah..Google just changed the game for Internet Marketing, SEO and Social Media with the integration of Social Media by way of Google+ into search.  This is a game changer for those that are social media savvy, heavily involved with technology and SEO masters.  So those that are not, are beyond being behind the eight ball.  The introduction of Social Search by way of Google+  has turned the Digital Divide into a Grand Canyon sized Chasm. I predicted this last year with the introduction of Google+, in my post Google+ IS Social Search. 

The Game has changed, so I’d advise grabbing your thinking caps and putting them on folks.  There is an even steeper curve to climb now, some will conquer it and some will be collateral damage. Either way, please know that the Game has Changed.

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3 Things That YOUR #SocialMedia Marketer WILL NOT do.

3Things

There’s a lot of misconceptions about Internet Marketers and Social Media Experts and that is primarily due to people not really having a firm understanding of the industry. This industry is still growing and those that have been in technology related fields although they may be experts, they are still learning.   Social Media in particular as we are experiencing it now is still pretty new, hence we all are getting acclimated to viral videos, word of mouth marketing, content sharing and more.

The newness of this industry, has really caused a bit of a panic and unrealistic expectation with organizations in regard to Social Media Marketers and Internet Marketers.  Since it is relatively new and still evolving every day we are all still learning, growing and evolving with the industry.

Social Media Marketing, New Media Marketers and Internet Marketers specialize in marketing YOUR company by way of online strategies.

They Will NOT

  • Know everything about your particular industry:  No Social Media Marketer will be 100% versed on every industry, just as traditional marketers are not. They are marketers not magicians so they will perform research about your company, clients, demographics, competitors etc.  <sidenote> I do think the Social Media Gurus, may be versed on every industry, because they are Gurus and have 10 plus years of social media experience. :-P </sidenote>  Seriously though, would you rather a person be a master of your industry or a master of their industry and have the talent to MARKET your industry using the most cutting edge online techniques?  I’m pretty sure most people have current employees that have mastered their organization, that doesn’t help with the need to hire someone to USE the information that they’ve mastered about social media to help THE ORGANIZATION. I know the answer, so this is rhetorical.
  • Be your own personal Miracle worker: Social Media is not a magic bullet, so if there are organizational issues, social media or any kind of marketing for that matter, will probably not rescue it.
  • Use Old School Marketing Techniques: Many companies are interested in being a part of the social media revolution, yet have not given up their old ways of doing business or altered their technique since 1965. Most Internet Marketers or Social Media experts will not spam your marketing message across social media channels. This would do damage to their reputation as a legitimate Internet Marketer.

There is so much misinformation about social media which is causing a bit of mass hysteria, especially in the more old school traditional workplaces. We all have to take a deep breath, think clearly and honestly stop TRIPPING.

When searching for a person to handle your companies Internet Marketing and or Social Media needs you should search for some essential qualifications.

They Should:

  • Have a firm grasp of Social Media Optimization:   Working with Facebook and Twitter is NOT enough because although these two channels are huge, they are not the ONLY social media channels needed to optimize your social media strategy. Optimizing your social media channels should be based on your individual company needs and the marketer hired should know how to analyze those needs and proceed accordingly
  • Have the ability to create a social media strategy: This strategy should be geared toward your individual company needs. All strategies don’t work for every company. Most companies have individual needs and the marketer hired should have the ability to create a custom strategy based on these needs.
  • A strong online brand for themselves:  That is  indication of the kind of strategy that they can create for you. You should ALWAYS Google the people that you are interested in hiring. If they DO NOT have a strong presence for their brand they may not have the ability to create a strong brand for your organization either.
  • Preferably have some formal education: Formal education or extensive training in Internet Marketing Strategies, is a definite plus because it helps with social media strategy creation. Formal education in the way of some kind of Internet Marketing classes, training or comprehensive on the job training will allow the marketer to be more strategic in planning your social media strategy.
  • Writing Skills: A huge part of an effective social media strategy is the ability to blog.  I can not express how important blogging is to any successful social media strategy. It allows brand building, engagement opportunities and serious Google Juice.

Some things that are a definite plus

  • Video Creation: YouTube is huge and the #2 utilized search platform. If you marketer can create video, thats For The Win.
  • Slide Show Creation: Slide shows are awesome, brand building and great for increasing brand exposure.
  • SEO: Should be an essential part of every social media strategy and could be very powerful if used in conjunction with an effective social media optimization strategy.
  • Analytics: If you create an online presence you should have the ability to monitor its effectiveness. Analytics is an essential part of any social media and or online strategy, although some do not recognize or utilize it.
  • Adsense: If you have a blog you want to monetize it.
  • Affiliate Marketing:  Monetize again.
  • Photo Editing: Photo editing even just basics are a great addition, it allows creation of original and eye catching graphics for blogs and social media posts.
  • WordPress: Is THE blogging platform of choice and gives blogs more Google juice than any other blog platform than I’ve worked with and I’ve worked with them all.

I’m sure these things will change especially since things are continuing to evolve and we are all continuing to grow and learn in this industry. However, this is a great start..

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Video Wrap up of 2011, This IS AN AMAZING Demonstration Of The POWER of #SocialMedia

SocialMedia2011

All technology and social media focused people recognize the power of social media but I have never seen such a powerful depiction of social media as the video below.  It could be that Social Media is THE NEW FORM OF MEDIA, display, shared and told from OUR perspective!  This video will give you Chills!

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Are You YouTubing? #SocialMedia And #YouTube Go Hand In Hand

YouTube

YouTube is the SECOND most search channels online, first only to Google. That is HUGE!  This is reason enough for you to seriously consider adding Youtube to your arsenal of social media tools.  Think about how big that is and how big that could be for your brand. A person searches Google 1st and then pops over to Youtube to search. So if you have your brand on Youtube this is definitely a For The Win for your brand.

Something else to think about, Google is #1 for search, Youtube is #2 , both of which are Google holdings. So think about the importance of Google+, I’m just throwing it out there.

Youtube is not one of the channels that can be easily used for original content as some of the other social media channels  because there is a little creativity and skill needed to to create original content. This is something that not all people have but it can be acquired and there are a few options that can be explored immediately.

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

First you need to get started with creating a Youtube channel for your brand. Add your logo and customize the channel with your   brand. There are a few options when creating a look for you channel that are standard but you can go beyond that. You can add a custom background and tweak the colors to totally match your brand.

If you are unfamiliar with creating a video, a good  way to get a quick video up for your channel is to use some of the video creation tools provided by Google.  Take a look below.

How to create an easy video for your channel.

  • Xtranormal is an avenue that allows you to create an easy animated video in a few steps. This can be used to create a video about your brand, company or new promotion that you are having. I created an Xtranormal video for the introduction of one of my new company capabilities. I was introducing QR Code Products so I thought I would use this avenue to create a bit of an intro of this service.
  • Search Stories allows you to create a video based on search criteria. You can create a great video for your company or brand using search terms. See the example below.


Take a look at the Infographic is below, it will give you an indication of how HUGE Youtube  is and how you can’t afford to ignore it.

YouTube Killed TV
By Freemake, proud developer of YouTube Converter

OK, times-a-wasting’ Go ahead, get started!

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The Evolution of #Facebook [INFOGRAPHIC]

EvolutionOfFacebook

 

I am a huge advocate of Social Media in general and I believe Facebook plays a huge role in what social media has evolved into.   People tend to go on and on about how they hate Facebook, Invasion of Privacy blah..blah..blah. However we all have to realize the important life altering role that Facebook has played in how we communication and actually how we live  now.

Although there are a lot of channels that proceeded Facebook, they are the platform  that has made it possible for us to as social engaged as we are now. Good, Bad or Ugly Facebook has changed the entire world.  Take a look at the infographic below to give you a Timeline of those changes.

 

The Evolution of Facebook Features

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2012 Its Time To Organize Your #SocialMedia Channels ALL In One Place With #XeeMe @AxelS

#XeeMe: If you're online you NEED to be on @XeeMe

This is 2012 and its a perfect time to bring organization to your life, every aspect of your life so this includes your social media channels as well. I am a HUGE advocate of social media and trying the many channels that are constantly being introduced. There are so many platforms to try, that  it can get to the point where keeping up with these channels can become overwhelming.

I started keeping track of all of my channels by way of little notebook. Seriously? What a fail on my part because I literally ran out of pages, it became extremely unruly and just quite frankly just a little silly of me.  I don’t know what I was thinking to try to keep track of online channels using an old school method. So I started to search for online tools to keep track of the many platforms that I use on a regular basis.  I dabbled with a few until I found XeeMe.

XeeMe is one of the most amazing tools that I’ve  found to help keep track of the growing number of social media channels that you may have.  XeeMe does allow you to keep track of all of your social media channels but it does so much more because there is a very powerful analytic aspect of XeeMe which allows you to monitor your engagement on these channels as well.  Additionally you can connect to other members of XeeMe as well to grow your network.

I have been blogging about adding many channels to your social media presence, now that you’ve done that use XeeMe to organize those channels.  To learn more about XeeMe, meet Axel, the founder and rest of the brilliant team behind this wonderful platform join the XeeMe Power Network Group on Facebook. They are super engaged, willing to answer questions and its a group of people that will help you to use XeeMe to help organize and grow your social media network.

Take a look at the video below to give you a peak into XeeMe through the eyes of its founder Axel Schultze

Now its time to get organized with XeeMe, Let’s connect there too: Anise Smith’s XeeMe

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2012: How New Media Works, THE 12 Social Media Platforms Explained

2012
I was having a discussion with Michael Q Todd about Social Media and platforms that are really rocking. It was a very informal, laid back but very informative discussion but these 12 platforms that have been rockin’ for me. After working to get my social media strategy where I want it, this is what i’ve come up with.

12 Platforms you should check out for 2012:  

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook

Facebook 

There are a lot of people that have issues with Facebook for whatever reason. STOP TRIPPIN’ people! Yeah I said it. Facebook, love it or hate it but they have around 800 million users and they are still growing. This is HUGE for your ability to build your brand. It’s not really about love or hate, frankly it’s about business, brand exposure and Cha-ching!

Facebook has now created an option to Subscribe. This is HUGE for people that use their personal Facebook page for networking, like me. This allows people that follow you on other channels to follow you on your Facebook personal page without becoming your friend. Remember if you opt to allow people to subscribe to your updates, remember to provide some information that would appeal to them and use the public option to post.

Facebook is a driving force behind social media and if you are smart you will take advantage of this to propel your brand. The new revamped Facebook Timeline with ability to offer people the opportunity to subscribe to your updates is HUGE for your brand. Add the power of the Facebook Business Page and that makes a power combination.

When you scoff at Facebook, think about which comparable platforms offer you the ability to reach up to 800 million people.  So if you have jumped off the Facebook bandwagon, I suggest jumping back on. 800 million people, there’s nothing to think about, just do it.
Twitter  

Twitter offers a HUGE opportunity to reach out to an unlimited amount of people, with 140 characters.  Things to keep in mind, don’t spam, don’t shove your marketing message and or sales pitch down the throats of your followers. They don’t care what your selling. REALLY. Twitter is about sharing content that is of value to your followers, NOT about you, your message and what you’re selling. The plus is that providing great content and valuable information will put you in a position to be viewed as an authority within your subject area. This will increase your chances of turning followers into potential clients, clients and or people to collaborate with.  Twitter is HUGE, use it.

Google +

Is the new kid on the block and is really being minimized by many. This is a platform that should be taken serious if nothing more than realizing that Google RAWKS. The Internet would NOT be the same if Google wasn’t a huge player. Google+ is not just a social media platform but a Game changer.  Google + will change the Internet as we know it like they did with the introduction of Google and the domination of the Internet since then. Google will take every platform that they own or that they plan to own and add it to Google+ to make it ROCK. BELIEVE IT! Google+ is the Game changer because it is the beginning of Social Search. Grab a Google+ Page for your business as well. Pay attention peeps.

Scoop.it

Curation is a huge part of the future of the Internet, primarily because there is an abundance or over abundance of information floating about on the millions of social media channels. People are quite literally overwhelmed by the amount of information that is being chucked at them. Curationallows the curator to compile topics of interest by weeding through the information, finding what’s of relevance to their demographic of followers and supply that information to their followers. This is what Scoop.it is all about and you need to check it out.

Image representing Tumblr as depicted in Crunc...

Tumblr

Is an extremely social media oriented blogging platform that is easy to share, easy to follow and extremely popular. I use my Tumblr account everyday. Tumblr is great for supplying small segments of information, pictures and quotes to people that are interested in grabbing quick information.

WordPress

Is one of the most powerful blogging platforms available now. I am a reformed WordPress basher that really didn’t get the big hoopla about WordPress until I used it myself. I was using Posterous as my primary blog platform of choice, they changed their format and IMHO Jumped the Shark. So, I was almost forced to look at the only blogging platform that I hadn’t tried  and that was WordPress.  I like the functionality of the free platform and I really REALLY love the self hosted WordPress.org option.  Since WordPress added the option to subscribe for most of the blogs, they are now the best in my book.  I use the Free format for everyday, uncomplicated blogging and the self hosted format for my more involved blogging needs.

StumbleUpon

Image representing StumbleUpon as depicted in ...

Is one of the most underutilized and underused formats in the social media game. Stumbleupon will give some serious juice to your content. I have included it as a sharing option on my blogs, I’ve added it to my Chrome Plugin and I Stumble every blog that I +1 and share. Use it!

Commun.it

Is one of the BEST Twitter management tools that I’ve ever used. I am usually not one for Twitter management tools;  However, I really LOVE Commun.it.  This platforms helps you to focus on people that are your most engaged members, supporters and influences. That’s huge because it allows you to know who is really in touch with your brand so you can actively engage with them. This is “For The Win” for creating an active and engaged Twitter following.  Commun.it also gives you an indication of those that have unfollowed you and those that you should consider unfollowing based on lack of engagement. This is a must in your arsenal for 2012. It is still in Beta and by invite only so if you want, grab INVITES

Empire Avenue

Is first and foremost a great way to meet some really AMAZING people, not just any people but the Social Media Elite ( my opinion) There are so many people in technology and social media related fields playing this social media stock market game.

What’s good about Empire Avenue is that it numerically rates your social media activity by  platform and assigns a dividend (div) amount based on how engaging your content is. The dividend is payed out daily to people that buy your shares, sort of like dividends in real stock market.

You can register as an individual or as a company. After you register, connect your social media channels and watch your share price and divs go up. There is a big drive to buy n00bs, because players have an opportunity to buy shares at a low price.

This game is not for the faint of heart. If you content sucks, your divs will suck and people unload your shares. The good thing is that share price and divs can give you an indication of things in your social media strategy that you may need to work on.  What’s more important than the gaming aspect, is that Empire Avenue offers players the opportunity to meet and learn from some of the most amazing, tech savvy people that they will ever meet.   Join, then chase down the Facebook Groups, Social Empire, Team Zen,  XBar and Eav Winners. Join the groups, learn the game and meet the amazing people behind the game.

Twyla

I am still learning a lot about Twyla but this is one of the platforms that I will be using more. One of the HUGE things about Twyla that I like is the POWER TWEET. It allows you to create the most powerful tweet ever.  Twylah is still in Beta so you have to ask for invites.

Pinterest

Is Image driven Google juice. It is the “New” Hot Social Media Platform, although I hear it’s been around for a while. Either way everyone is jumping on it, primarily because people really love pics and that is the driving force behind Pinterest. It allows you to grab pics from online sources, Flickr, Urls and uploaded images and add to your boards. People can then share those images by repinning them. You can also embed the images, which is really cool. I just started using this and I really like it.

Triberr 

Is the ultimate source of Blog Juice! One of the things about blogging is the ability to get your content out there, shared, Tweeted etc. You can have the greatest blog out in the world with the most wonderful content but if no one reads it,  the content is almost irrelevant. Triberr is the key  to getting readers for your blog content.

Triberr allows a user to create a Tribe and add members to their tribe. All tribe members can add an RSS of their blog which then gives the tribe members an opportunity to share  this content with their Twitter followers.  This is huge for brand awareness, blog traffic, subscribers and potentially for meeting clients and collaborators.

When a person is invited to a Tribe they can then create a new Tribe of their own and invite members. Triberr is still in beta so you will need an invite, which are not really spread around like other Beta platforms. This is primarily because to offer an invite to Triberr is inviting that person into your Tribe.

The key to being successful with Triberr is being very selective about who you invite to your Tribe and careful about Tribes that you join. I find that it is best to have similar and or complementary content as the people in your Tribe.  Also, make sure any Tribe that you join have members that are willing to share your content with their Twitter followers as you are willing to share with yours. I’ve learned these things the hard way so I am very selective about Tribes that I join.  If you join a Tribe that does not meet your expectations there, just bounce. I would, I have and would do so again.

OK, those are my 12 things for 2012. Rock on!

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