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Anise Smith Marketing

Social Media Professor | Digital Marketing Technologist | Mobile Web | Digital Webinar Developer | Analytics

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That guy just posted some stuff to #Facebook, He’s obviously an EXPERT. I’ll hire him said no company ever!

DigitalMarketingManager

I often have conversations about Digital Marketing and how things have changed. We have gone from focusing on Social Media and toward focusing on Digital Marketing all within a year. Although there has been a transition in dialogue and definitely a shift in consciousness, one thing that has not shifted is the degree of people claiming to be experts.

I’ve had a number of people say, “ I am a F-ing Expert.” Oh, I’m sorry seriously? I wonder if these people realize that I’ve been following them on a variety of social media channels AND I have a permanent echo in my mind of some of the dumbazz questions that I’ve seen in their feed. So, um yeah you post some stuff to your Facebook page but a Digital Marketer, that does not make you.

We have really reached the age in technology that companies are searching for more than a person that can post a few cute animal photos to their Facebook feed. I have always said that Digital Marketing is about way more than just posting content to Facebook. The social media aspect of digital marketing is about posting content that reaches out to touch readers/views and engages them enough for them to respond and share. This is of course all WITHOUT tagging 200 friends with the highest Klout score.

Not only do the peers of the so called experts KNOW that these people are no such thing, so do employers looking for talent in the Digital Marketing space. It’s NOT enough to post some stuff to Facebook, you must be on your game now that capabilities in this space is high. The first indication that a person is NOT on their game is those that claim the loudest about their expertise in an industry are usually the ones that aren’t. How can you be an expert in a field that is growing at super quick speed? The people that are dominating this space are those that quietly go about their way doing their thing while continuing to learn their craft.

It is not even a question about companies diving into this space; it is a must if they want to stay in business. Guess what, if you really think that claiming that you are an expert is going to be enough, good luck with that.

I read a statistic that said 90% of content consumed occurs in front of a screen. This means that most of the content that is being read, which has to be created by someone will probably be created by someone in the Digital Marketing space.

A huge part of being a Digital Marketer is creating engaging, relevant shareable content NOT just posting some crap on Facebook. Although the creation of this content is very important, there are so many more things that define what digital marketing is all about. Those that GET THIS, will be the ones that will be in demand in this space.

Right now we are at a pivotal moment in history and in the growth of this industry and it’s the ultimate Shit Got Real moment. NOW is a time when the Marketers that are so in demand move to the top of the pack and the chest beating, “Im a F-ing expert” Gurus fade to black.

If you want to compete in this space it’s time to start doing and stop yapping. Some of the in-demand skills are any combination of the following:

  • Social Media Marketing
  • Social Media Optimization
  • Search Engine Marketing
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Content Management Systems
  • Web Analytics
  • Customer Relationship Management
  • Web Usability
  • Mobile Web
  • Mobile Marketing
  • Direct Response Marketing
  • Content Marketing
  • Content Optimization
  • Product Marketing
  • Branding
  • Marketing Agency Experience
  • Project Management
  • Video Editing/Creation
  • Video Marketing
  • Social Media Analytics and more

This list includes just some of the expectations of a Digital Marketer that I’ve read about. So needless to say you MUST be on your A Game, beyond just posting stuff on Facebook and boasting about your perception of your own expertise.

Hiring within this Digital Marketing Space is at an all time high and I expect that it will be continuing it’s upward growth. This growth is primarily due to the opinion that traditional marketing is failing in the area of producing tangible results. There was a huge report conducted by The Harvard Business Review, which states that CEO ‘s are tired of traditional marketing that lack results. This opinion is probably a huge factor in the growth of the Digital Marketing Industry. Take a look at the graphic below to display the growth in this field.

[Source: WANTED Analytics] Digital Marketing Employment Growth
[Source: WANTED Analytics] Digital Marketing Employment Growth
Although traditional marketing may be struggling according to this study it doesn’t minimize the need for businesses to market their companies capabilities. This is one of the things that are fueling the growth of Digital Marketers. It allows companies that are hiring to merge services already in use with new technologies to cover an area that is growing exponentially.

So if you are on your game in this digital marketing space, you are holding a winning hand right now. Take a look at the areas in which companies expect to place organizational focus in the graphic below.

Digital Growth Areas 2013
Digital Growth Areas 2013

If you are NOT holding a winning hand in some of these area, brush up on your skills, stop bragging and get on your game. Because really no one wants to hear about what a rock star, guru, maven what-ever-the-hell you are calling yourself this week, especially if your game AIN’T TIGHT.

As usual, I welcome comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be reached by Facebook, Google+ or Twitter. I’m pretty sure the GURU’s will be the first to comment.

5 Platforms That Will Help With Time Management And Balancing Your Workflow in 2013

Time Management

As platforms are introduced to the digital marketing space we continue to be spread thin in trying to embrace them all. At a certain point, as Digital Marketers we must really look at the amount of time we are spending on platforms. Then we should decide which ones we need to keep, make priority and decide which ones we might need to reevaluate.

It’s not as if we are discarding platforms but more like be realistic and making a conscious choice to stop spreading ourselves thin. This is exactly what can happen if we continue try to embrace every new platform that presents itself in this ever-increasing digital marketing space.

I wrote a blog post about the 13 Digital Marketing Platforms That We Must Embrace in 2013 and I am a firm believer in embracing those 13 platforms successfully and minimizing my interaction with some others.  I am not going to eliminate them just reevaluate how much time I need to spend on them and utilize platforms which help to manage time more effectively.

A few really essential platforms that help me to manage my time more effectively is as follows:

FACEBOOK SCHEDULED POSTS: 

This option is by far one of the BEST things that Facebook accomplished in all of 2012.  Not only was it a great addition, but it also allowed people to explore a FREE option of scheduling posts.  This allows me to exercise my life’s philosophy of “If It’s FREE, it’s For Me!” I love Facebook schedule posts, I utilize this often because I manage more than a dozen Facebook pages and this is a GREAT time saver!

BUFFER:

This continues to be a GREAT option for scheduling social media posts!  Buffer has continued to improve by adding analytics and additional social media channels that can be utilize through this platform. One of the things that I really love about buffer are that the toolbar and WordPress sharing plugin that allows you to add posts to your Buffer schedule at any point in your online travels. So this continues to be a GREAT platform whether you go with free posting or expand into the extended options offered if you decide to upgrade.  If you go with the upgraded options you will have the ability to add unlimited posts and share to up to 12 social media platforms. Whichever option you chose Buffer should be a part of your digital marketing time management strategy.

LATERBRO:

I have been using Laterbro for quite a while and I cannot say enough about this platform. Although not as popular as some of the other scheduling tools, Laterbro is still a winner. It is FREE and allows you to schedule content to Facebook and multiple Twitter accounts. If you have not had a chance to give Laterbro a run, you should make a point to do so.

TRIBERR:

I am a HUGE fan of Triberr and I can never say enough about this amazing platform. Triberr is a platform that allows you to team up with other people in tribes to share content through Twitter and other social media channels. One of the things that I really LOVE about Triberr is that it allows you to determine how you’d like the schedule sharing the posts of your tribemates. You can share in15-minute increments or up to 24-hour increments.  Although not officially a scheduling platform, Triberr allows you to schedule information of your tribemates with your content to create a very nice flow of content through your Twitter feed.

TWEET OLD POSTS:

If you are using a self-hosted WordPress platform for your blog take a look at the plugin Tweet Old Post. This allows you to share some of your WordPress blog posts through your Twitter feed automatically using this plugin.

So, lets start 2013 off right with the right social media platforms,  making 2013 a happier year, saving more money in 2013, and NOW effective time management !  Lets get excited about 2013!!!

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13 Things Digital Marketers Should Master In #2013

13 for 2013

Last year I created a post about 12 Platforms That We Should Use in 2012 and my goodness what a difference a year makes.  So much has happened in the world of Digital Marketing in 2012, all pretty exciting.  Progress is always a wonderful thing and all of the changes, good, bad or ugly is history altering in this industry.

With so much change occuring last year, we should start 2013 with mastering some things that will alter and enhance our lives within this ever changing digital marketing space.  Take a look at the 13 things you should master in 2013.

    1. Google+: Last Year Google+ barely made my list although I was always a fan. I must admit to being quite guilty of not utilizing this platform as much as I should. So this year I will change that!  Google has really stepped up their game with this platform and that is a game changer for social media platforms. Google has integrated all of the Google services, this is HUGE. Google rolled out a great connection with Blogger, Youtube, merged Google Local and added Communities. ALL HUGE, especially when Facebook has been making so many changes that have not been beneficial to brands. One of these changes is the algorithm change almost forcing brands to utilize Facebook ads to get the exposure that they once had for free. Also the new layout that doesn’t allow branded iFrame pages to be the default landing page, again forcing brands to look at other channels for driving website traffic, namely Facebook ads. Finally Facebook doesn’t allow contact information on brand cover pages.  ALL of these choices that Facebook has made make it very easy for brands to explore Google+ for their brands.
    2. Explore Twitter more thoroughly:  As Facebook minimized avenues in which brands could  expose their contactImage representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...information to their followers, Twitter provided an opportunity for brands by way of the new layout and header to maximize exposure.  This is reason enough to explore Twitter more or utilize it more, if you currently do not use it as much as you should.
    3. WordPress:  If you are not utilizing wordpress and you have an old school traditional website, now is the time to consider looking at WordPress as your website/blog platform. The endless possibilities of this platform is enough to make you take a look at it and go for it. Also venture outside of the templates offered by WordPress, there are so many websites that offer templates that may better fit your brands needs.  If you can’t find one suitable, consider getting a custom template created just for your brand.
    4. Triberr:  Is a MUST have this year as it was last year, maybe more so.  I cannot stress the importance of this platform enough.  EVERYONE that blogs needs to be a part of Triberr for the maximum exposure to their blog.  The key to Triberr and being successful is being selective about Tribes.   Make Triberr a part of your digital marketing strategy for 2013 NOW!
    5. Refresh Your Brand:  Your digital marketing strategy loses its effectiveness without consistent branding. It is very important to have a memorable and consistent brand across all social media channels.  A new year is a great time to freshen your old brand or even start from scratch.
    6. Monetize Your Content:  If you have a decent blog following you should consider monetizing your content. Look at Google ads, affiliate marketing and other monetizing options.
    7. Go Visual:  Even if you are currently put off by Instagram don’t let that stop you from diving into other visual platforms. Check out Flickr, Pinterest or both. Don’t forget to incorporated Youtube into your Digital Marketing Mix. The new year is a great time to create a company capabilities videos displaying some of the new services that you offer or emphasize some of the other services that you currrently offer.  Incorporate your new refreshed brand while you’re at it in to your Youtube channel.
    8. Add some traditional Marketing to your mix:  All of any one way to market is never a good idea even in this very digital world.  I have blogged often about integrating digital into traditional marketing, but there are a few traditional marketing concepts that work well with digital marketing concepts. Although traditional marketing has changed so much it is not totally obsolete. A fusion of traditional and digital marketing is something that should be explored. Consider doing a direct mail campaign to reintroduce your newly branded online presence and wordpress page. This will allow you to tie your marketing efforts together and create some buzz about your newly branded online presence.
    9. Explore new technologies: There is always a reason to explore new technologies, primarily because we are living through a huge period of change with technologies.  Although these technologies aren’t exactly new, they are not totally embraced yet so learn more about Augmented Reality, Cloud Computing, 3D Printing  and more.
    10. Explore Mobile:  Just in case you haven’t noticed yet a lot of people utilize their mobile device probably more than their laptop and/or desktop. Make your site mobile ready, if you haven’t done so yet.  Also consider getting a mobile website if you do not have the ability to make your site mobile ready and create a redirect from your traditional site to your mobile site. This would allow people that are on mobile devices to automatically go to your mobile site if they are on a mobile device.
    11. Explore QR Codes again: Mobile devices aren’t going anywhere, if anything usage will increase as the years go by.  QR Code Mobile basicQR Codes are a great way to create great campaigns to get people to your website. Make sure your QR code campaign is well planned and executed.  A few tips, you must have a call to action. You must give a person a reason to scan and make sure your QR Code scans to a mobile device. Finally have a GREAT QR code scanning App. I am currently using Scan.Me and It is the best QR code scanner that I’ve used as of yet because you just move your mobile device close to the QR code and it scans. That’s it, no fiddling around, minimal steps. Tie your QR code campaign to your new direct mail campaign! WINNING!
    12. Social Media Time Management: Time management is essential with social media, which  can honestly be a huge time suck which could lead to burn out without effective time management.  Social Media burn out is not even an option, if you are a Digital Marketer. So utilize tools that will help you manage your time more efffectively.
    13. Finally, Have FUN!  Digital Marketing is FUN especially if you have figured out a way to effectively manage your time!

As usual, I welcome any thoughts or comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent!  Feel free to check me out on Facebook or Twitter!

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This Is Your BRAIN On Social Media [Infographic]

Your Brain On Social Media

Last weekend I was having a bit of a technical issue with my router and it’s failure to communicate effectively with my modem. This created a HUGE issue with my need to communicate by way of social media.  Not that I was having a social media withdrawal issue or anything but I did replace it with one of the ubee routers that I have been researching.

I really think that we have grown so accustomed to tuning in to social media because it allows us to gain access to so many things that are going on.  We tune in to find out what’s going on with our friends, the latest news and everything that is going on in the world.  Social Media has literally become our one stop shop news source.  So it is understandable the it has become very valuable to most.  With that said, it seems that social media has become a bit of an addiction for many.  I’m still not admitting that I have an issue or anything ONLY saying that I understand. 🙂

However, take a look at the infographic below which displays how many other people may be having a social media issues.

Please Include Attribution to OnlineCollegeCourses.com With This Graphic Your Brain on Social Media Infographic

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Why You MUST Ignore Your Social Media Scores

Social Media Scoring

Social Media as we know it is still in its infancy and has a lot more growth in the works.  We are still learning and growing in the digital marketing space because the industry is still evolving.  The scoring of social media creates an almost old school atmosphere due to its push to GRADE the quality of our engagement.

There are a few different social media platforms that I am involved with that actively score content based on the companies preformatted algorithm. Klout, Empire Avenue and Kred all have some form of ranking, grading, or number placed upon YOUR social media activity. I am not saying that any of these algorithms are wrong in general but should we base OUR engagement and or activity on ranking higher with any of these platforms? Shouldn’t we instead focus upon providing content that is of interest to our friends and followers?

Like I said, I am involved with these platforms but I do not base ANY of my online activity on increasing any of these scores, ANYMORE. It is very easy to allow your own competitive nature to dictate the types of content that you promote from your brand based on increasing your score.  I have been down that road and it really is not a good path to be on. This is primarily because it diminishes the purpose of social media to a degree and cheapens the value of your content because the focus becomes about increasing your score instead of providing content of value.

I’ve notice that due to a change in whatever algorithm Klout is using these days, people have begun to “game” the system with mass Facebook photo tagging.  I’m not speaking of an occasional tag from a friend that you interact with on a regular basis, I am speaking of mass tagging, everyday from acquaintances whom you have little or no interaction with on a regular basis. I just had to block a person that tagged me on 6 photos all within 3 minutes and the kicker is that I very seldom had any interaction with this person.  It was so bad that I couldn’t find my own content or content that was shared by legitimate engaging friends and followers.

I am NOT speaking about friends or people that I engage with, I am talking about random acquaintances that tag you on multiple photos on a daily basis. I love getting tagged on genuine content that is of interest, that’s engaging or friends think that I would like.  This post is not really about that, but more about the person that specifically tags with the purpose of a score boost.

How does this kind of behavior increase your social media engagement, legitimately?  The score gamers, post content and tag you on the content, so the person tagged either feels that they shouldn’t be rude by not responding or they automatically “answer when called” as we innately do. So does this increase your ability to produce engaging content that has the ability to speak to people, touch their heart or is though provoking? Umm NO! However they did increase their Klout score because they tagged the same 45 people that they tag every day and the people that were tagged responded, which creates dialog on the post.  So, since there were a high percentage of people to comment to the post, they get a Klout score bump. Oh yay!  This, to me displays that the person creating the tags do not have a firm grasp on what social media is about and the purpose of creating content. I will even venture to say that it is a n00b move for the so called social media gurus.

As a Digital Marketer that is listed on Klout, Kred and a player of Empire Avenue I am aware of my scores on all platforms but I am not driven to perform any action to increase my numbers. It simply takes away from the genuine ability to engage and create content that I believe people are looking for when they follow me on my social media channels.  Additionally, it takes away from the enjoyment of social media when it becomes a game to get the highest score at all costs.

I am not a hater of any of these platforms because they do have value in the social media arena. However, I would like to see less gamed content with the exclusive goal of chasing a score and more genuine sharing of content that is of value to readers.

The take away:

Simply, provide great content and people will respond.

What are your thoughts? Am I on point?  Am I off  base? Or Meh? I welcome thoughts, comments and questions, good, bad ugly or indifferent.

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To Post Or Not To Post, That Is The Question: Share Responsibly W [Infographic]

Everyone Sees You Be Careful What You Post

We are living in a increasingly social world and I am pretty sure that it will become more social as time passes, if you can even imagine that. As we grow accustomed to a different way of conducting “conversations” and sharing content we must be very aware of how and what we share, this is especially true if you are not self employed.

I am a total advocate of freedom of speech, freedom of expression and all of the other freedoms we are allow by because we are American Citizens. I love to see great content, even controversial content especially when it is beautiful and or thought provoking. However I have had some things come through my news feed that makes me question the sanity of the people that are posting.  For example I had a full upclose and personal blow by blow image gallery of c-section photos. Ummm Seriously? I want to see this? Why?  Wouldn’t a person think about how they would feel if they got an a up close and personal of someone’s C-section in their news feed. One would think that the persons posting would come to the conclusion that people  may not want that much information about them or may it could be that this may come under  the over-sharing category. People should think about this BEFORE they hit the dang share button.  Hmm imagine that, think before you post?  I, do so wish that this had been the case with my c-section over-sharing friend, my cornea is still scorched and its been about two years since that traumatic experience.

Ironically the same person that shared her C-section photos had the audacity to complain that Facebook was violated her privacy. Umm wow, really? I think that Facebook MIGHT have had an opportunity to violate your privacy had you not beat them to the punch with the full frontal cornea burning images first.  My point here is that although we are living in a social world some personal photos and such go way beyond oversharing and there needs to be an exercise in restraint. With that said I would never report a person based on their sharing. I recently experienced a friend that was reported and banned and I believe that to be excessive  when I can just as easy move on to the next piece of content.

Sharing with lack of restraint is really unnecessary because you can share only the information that you’d like by utilizing Facebook privacy settings. I find that in addition to the abundance of over sharing people really lack the ability , or chose not to to set up lists. This is the simplest way to provide content to certain lists of people and not to others. Facebook has always had the ability to set up lists to gear your content toward certain people on those lists. I wrote an ebook about this at least two years ago. This option was tweaked a bit and made easier after Google+ was introduced with their fancy circles which almost force you to be aware of who you share content with. Lists would have allowed c-section  overshare abuser to share her photos with just the people she wanted to, instead of her entire friends list. This would have spared me the trauma of a scorched cornea as well. I have a super quick video below that will aid you so won’t, too, be guilty of affecting the vision of some poor unsuspecting soul.

I have a list of friends, family, acquaintances, co-workers and subscribers on my Facebook page and I gear my content to different people by using lists that I’ve created.  However even though I have lists, I am very cognizant of the information that I share.  I only share information that I would share with my grandmother, father and or son. Since my father and son are both friends with me on Facebook this rule is easy to remember.

If you question what you should or should not post, take a look at the infographic below to give some guidance.

 

Please Include Attribution to OnlineClasses.org With This Graphic To Post or Not to Post Infographic

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Social Search is Here and So Is Social Search Optimization: ARE YOU READY?

Social Search Optimization
I had a discussion a short while ago about the importance of social media to a business person in this era. My specific conversation revolved around the importance of Facebook for new and established businesses. I cannot stress enough that traditional marketing as we once knew it is over. O-V-E-R. I’m not saying that traditional marketing as it once was does not play a role in our daily lives, only that it has changed.  Think about the last time you picked up a traditional TV guide or magazine. Makes you say wow, right? It is imperative that your marketing plan surpass what was the norm years ago and embrace what is happening NOW.

Social Media has really taken business by storm and grown beyond that even. Social Media Campaigns have totally gone beyond posting/updating your Facebook page and Tweeting your deal of the day. As businesses we must be more strategic than that, we must engage our audience, focus on the social media channels that are good for our brand and monitor our insights to see if the content we are sharing is on target. So, social media campaigns are just that, campaigns and really go beyond just playing on Facebook.

One of the biggest game changers in the creation of effective social media strategies are  the merging of social media and search, I’ve talked about this for a few years now. This really involves utilizing social media channels in search results to increase search rank with Google. A huge player in this game will be Google+ although the naysayers would reject this theory. I have personally noticed an increase of my social media channels integrated in my search results and this has increased my organic search presence.

As an Internet Marketing company I visualize Social Search Optimization as a natural progression to utilizing social media, search and optimizing those channels for the most effective  social media campaigns ever.  It is truly time to take it to the next level, embrace the extreme change of marketing, rock your business and learn more about strategies that give your business an opportunity to compete with and maybe surpass its competitors. A company that is totally rocking this Social Search Optimization space is ThinkBigSites, appropriate name don’t ya’ think?

Are you ready to take your social media strategy to the next level?

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Social Media and Technology SHOULD Make Tasks EASIER NOT Harder So, Keep It Simple Stupid [KISS]

KISS

Technology and Social Media can be as difficult or as easy as you want to make it.  I’m not saying that it’s so easy, only that sometimes it doesn’t have to be quite as complicated as some can make it. Sometimes people make technology, social media and digital marketing a lot more complicated than it needs to be. This is usually because of lack of understanding, negativity toward online platforms, the need to use something that is new and shiny just because it’s new and shiny or a combination of all of the above.

So I’ve decided to list a few very simple things that can be done to help you THINK of technology in a different way, a way that can create an easier way to get things done in the easiest way possible. The first thing you should really do is shift your mindset about technology, social media and Internet Marketing.   Sometimes a persons mindset about technology can create unnecessary hurdles and complications.  I think of technology as a way to make some tasks a lot simpler or as an easier replacement of tasks that have become obsolete. It’s really not that complicated.

Take a look at a few things that you should consider if you want to benefit from technology and do so in the simplest way possible. Keep in mind, that all platforms and social media channels do not work for every brand, but it is great to give a few of them a go to see if they work for you and if they make some aspect of your daily work flow simpler!

  1. Embrace Social Media and its Growth:  Social media has really taken the place of some traditional advertising and marketing methods that were mainstream a few years ago.   So we MUST Stop fighting the growth of  this technology!    We should be at the point that we realize that social media is not going anywhere. We will NOT be able to roll back time, the horse is out of the barn, blah, blah blah. The point is, we should all be beyond denial that social media is here to stay. So we must make a conscious choice learn more and find a way to make this technology work for us. This is especially the case if you have a business because the use of traditional marketing ONLY as means of advertising and promoting a business is really a thing of the past. I don’t believe traditional marketing will ever totally fade but it has evolved into something different now and it has happened so gradually that we were unaware that it was happening. We hardly ever read newspapers or magazines anymore. Instead we turn on our computers, laptops, tablets and mobile phones which have fueled the growth of social media. So it’s time to embrace social media on a business level even if you opt out of it on a personal level because traditional advertising and marketing options are very limited and I’m pretty sure time will not go backward anytime soon. This is Simple, right?
  2. Go Beta: Some Beta platforms allow you to complete some of your tasks in an easier way.  There are so many new social media programs and channels introduced in beta form that you could almost try a new one a daily basis. Why not give a few of them a try? I have found some of the most amazing online channels offered in beta initially.  I have incorporated these programs, channels and tools into my marketing mix and they have really been a great addition.  Some of these channels have really allowed me to streamline some of my workflow. I’m not saying that you should jump at every beta that is available, only that you should try the channels that you believe would be most beneficial to your brand. Some of the these platforms may simplify your work flow as they have mine.  YES, It is just that Simple
  3. Keep only the Platforms that are good for your brand: After trying some of these Beta programs weed out the channels that do not fit your needs.  Not all platforms are a good fit for all brands or sometimes a platform just does not meet your expectations. Both are good reasons to discontinue use of the platform. Simply, if the platform adds value and simplifies some of your processes, keep it, if not dump it.   Simple.
  4. Use Facebook: Why there are still people that are resistent to Facebook and additional social media channels for business is beyond me. It’s not like there are an abundance of options available to advertise and market a business these days. We are not living in the 80’s.  I cannot stress how important Facebook has become, particularly for businesses. Ok, we understand Facebook does have glitches, the platform changes every year and Facebook implements changes that we may or may not like. Well guess what, there are 900 million people on Facebook and if we have an opportunity as business owners to even reach a percentage of those people why wouldn’t we go for it? Facebook with all of its flaws has presented companies with an opportunity to reach out to their customers in a way that has never been presented before.  Stop whining and use this platform for your business even if you chose not to use it on a personal level. If you want to be even a little competitive, expand your business, or be relevant online you much embrace this platform. Simple.
  5. Use Twitter:  Twitter may seem stupid to some but Twitter works!  This platform rocks for business, increasing brand recognition and customer service. It allows to you engage, reach out, become an authority in your field and increase customer interaction ALL within 140 characters for people that ONLY have time to indulge in you in these 140 characters, so make it good.
  6. Use G+:  Whether you think Google+ is relevent or not is irrelevant especially when it comes to business.  Google plus is an extension of Google which rocks on every possible level, it’s Google. This platform is NOT a Facebook replacement but it is an important part of any online strategy primarily because the use of Google+ will help with exposure, indexing and increasing your company relevance with Google.  With the merging of Google Local and Google+ Local pages creates one more reason that you need to be utilizing G+ for your brand.. Just hit the +1, share content on Google+ and watch the results. Simple, right?
  7. Blog: The importance of a blog cannot be expressed too much. Quite simply every post you write is a piece of content which makes your company more relevant as an authority in your industry. If you blog 3 times per week and another person never blogs, when the blog posts are indexed by Google the person that has blogged 3 times per week will be more relevant than the person that never blogged. That’s Simple
  8. Use WordPress for your blog: As a former WordPress basher I am quick to admit that I was wrong. WordPress is quite simply the BEST blogging platform available. I’ve tried others and WordPress has been the absolute best platform because of its ease of use and abundant plugins that creates a versatility and simplicity beyond any other blogging platform. It’s simple, use it.
  9. Go Mobile: A very high percentage of people use mobile devices to check Facebook, shop and visit other online websites. People have their mobile devices with them every waking moment so as business owners we simply MUST provide a channel in which visitors can view our online precence on their mobile device. NOT to do so, is cheating yourself and your business. Simple!
  10. Schedule Your social media: The use of so many channels and platforms makes it almost physically impossible NOT to schedule at least some of your business social media. There are a few channels that allow you to schedule your social media, one of which is Buffer. Simple, try it!
  11. Do Not SPAM: No one wants  messages spammy or otherwise shoved down their throats. That is very old school and just simply doesn’t fly in an engaging, social oriented world that we now live it. Simple Don’t Do it!
  12. Keep It simple: Technology is an amazing platform and there are so many things to learn and utilize but technolgy and the use of technology should ALWAYS make something that is difficult, easier. The use of technology shouldn’t take a simple task and make that task harder. That is just STUPID NOT SIMPLE. So if any of the channels that you are utilizing creates a more difficult experience for yourself or the user, there needs to be an evaluation of that platform.  I selected the platforms above because these are some of the most simple online platforms to utilize and should make workflow a lot simpler for a person or company.

So when venturing into technology and social media platforms for the first time, remember it just doesn’t have to be that complicated, there are easy steps, easy to use platforms and the use of any platform should not complicate a task.

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Privacy Starts With Ones Ability To STOP Irresponsibly OVERSHARING

Privacy and oversharing
Social Media has presented us all with the opportunity to engage, share and increase dialogue with many people. The super quick growth of social media has also opened the door to much more with how employers are dealing with social media, individuals, privacy issues, over sharing and much more. YES, I said it OVER SHARING!

 

I hear so much about Privacy this and privacy that, oh my god Facebook is Invading my privacy again, blah, blah, blah-blah BLAH!  Firstly, there is no such thing as privacy as we’ve known it, we are not living in the 80’s.   If that is what you are looking for you could very easily just quit all of your social media channels and then simply turn OFF your computer. However we all know that is not going to happen.

 

The third thing that a person could do to make sure their privacy has not been compromised by social media channels,  is to STOP OVER SHARING. Yes, I said it AGAIN. I noticed that the people that yell the loudest about their privacy being invaded by Facebook and various other social media channels are the ones that are the most guilty of over sharing.

 

There are just some things that need to remain private and I am not talking about funny little antics that have taken place during a persons day that others will find funny and uplifting. I am talking about some the the disturbing things that people share by way of status update that we just do not want to look at, hear about or would ever want permanaently branded into our brains. Before you post anything online ask yourself if you’d like to see what you plan to share floating through your newsfeed.

 

Things that I am pretty sure no one wants to see:

  • We do not want to see what your cat ate and then expelled from its body.
  • We do not want to see a video of your c-section, minute for minute and in its entirety. I had a c-section and I didn’t want to be in the room to watch my own procedure. Seriously, this is NOT Facebook newsfeed going viral sort of content.
  • We do not want to hear about hurling, burping, pooping, farting, scratching and most importantly we don’t want pictures either.

 

I say all of this to make the point that privacy starts with you and your ability to have an awareness about what information that you select to share. If you do not post out of bounds pics, say inappropriate things, share distasteful video you limit the chances of this information coming back to bite you.

 

As we move ahead with social media and social sharing we should utilize the privacy options that all social media platforms have in place. However most importantly we MUST develop an awareness about the information that we share.  The golden sharing rule that I abide by is, I only post something that I would not be ashamed to show my father, son or grandmother.

 

The take away: Think before you share and share responsibly!

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