Tag Archives: Social media

Panda Means Cuddly Right?

Hmmm. Not for those who disregard good content or love to spam.

Amplify’d from www.websitemagazine.com

If you happened to see Google’s interactive Earth Day doodle on Friday, you undoubtedly noticed the pair of Panda bears frolicking behind the omnipresent “G”. Do not be misled – those cuddly creatures mean business, and they are a not-so-subtle reminder to every company on the Web that the recently updated search algorithm nicknamed Panda is here to stay.

Clean your own house first
The goal of the Panda update is to improve the quality of content on the Web, thus improving the quality of Google’s search results. Sites that engage in content farming or otherwise low-quality, “spammy” content creation have been the primary targets, and the updated algorithm was designed to punish those sites by significantly lowering their SERP rankings.

New content strategy, new content
Panda does not require that all Web professionals suddenly become Pulitzer nominees, but a re-evaluation of your current content strategy is still a good idea. Even if it requires a temporary or part-time hire, ensuring that all existing content meets the above criteria before embarking on any new link building efforts is critical.

Be social, but smart
The first, and most important, part of building links in the Panda era is about producing useful content to which quality sites throughout your niche will want to link. The second and next most important part is about forging and building those relationships that will be the most valuable to your business.

Read more at www.websitemagazine.com



Basic Training

I read a blog yesterday with what I considered a very inflammatory theme: Social Media is a fad.  Fortunately I read through the entire post and at the end I had to agree that  with the true theme which is SoME is not the end – it is one of many means to an end.  It will evolve and change as information changes (and that will be verrry fast).

I have been in the work world for more years than I care to remember sometimes and it appears I will be in it for more than I had originally planned.  I used to have a secretary now I do all my own communications.  I planned for an annual sales meeting over three weeks way back when.  Now I can download the info in a half hour.  I actually received all my payments via checks in the mail.  That may have never happened to you.

Is this massive change in how companies operate the reason we often neglect to provide basic training?  When all is said and done some things NEVER change.

  • Customers do not care what you are hearing from anyone else but them.
  • Your business development is totally dependent on your customer’s business development.
  • They are uninterested in your cost saving measures unless they benefit and even then it cannot affect customer service.
  • You must take away the risk from purchasing your product/service whether it’s a personal relationship, a long history of working together or something so extravagantly wonderful it would be worse not to buy it.
  • Sales cannot be left to the sales people.  Everyone has to involved.
  • Bad employees have to be terminated immediately.  You are who you surround yourself with.

Can you do that with SoMe? You bet!  Are there other ways? Absolutely.  Just don’t forget basic strategy.  Without it all the tactics in the world won’t make a difference!

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In The Land Of The Blind The One-Eyed (Wo)Man Is King!

One of the downsides of the exponential growth of information is that it’s hard to know who to trust.

Most people go through the five stages of grief when they have to deal with information they don’t really want.

  1. I don’t need to go on Facebook.  I don’t want to read what someone ate for breakfast on Twitter. Who would hire somebody just by looking at LinkedIn?
  2. I don’t have time for this!
  3. I’ll try it but I’m going to hold on to my Yellow Pages ad.
  4. This is the only way to get new customers and I don’t know how to manage all the time and money this is going to cost.
  5. Okay. I’m getting on board.

The most dangerous step for businesses is Step 3.  You’re not really committed.

When you don’t know what you don’t know all advice sounds good.  So it’s not a hard decision to throw money at the first person you meet who says s/he is an expert, guru, consultant.

Often what happens is that you immediately head back to Stage #1. Stage #2 hits you a lot harder when your scarce resources have returned nothing.

In the land of the blind the one-eyed man is king!  Don’t agree to anything you don’t understand unless you actually have two eyes open.

Internet Addiction Affects College Students

Internet addicts?

A study by the University of Maryland indicates college students are seriously addicted to the internet.

I’d like to know what addiction isn’t serious but I digress.

A class of 200 students disconnected from all electronic media for 24 hours after which they blogged about their experiences.  The accumulated 110,000 words were centered around “bored, distracted, dependence, difficult” among others.  The infographs in the study are great visuals.

When I saw the first paragraph of the results of the study I couldn’t believe it.  Are you kidding me?

Then I got down to the part that made complete sense.  This wasn’t about gaming or finding a new bar or any of a million other things you can do with a phone or social media.

They said they felt disconnected from their family and friends.

Wow. I get that.  It’s just that I get it from being online all the time.

Talk about your generation gap.

The five highlights in the article are amazing! They spell out the future of communication.  Ignore at your own risk.

The Most Important Listening Post Is The One At The Top

Rebellion happens when people do not believe they are being heard.  Sometimes it leads to revolution.

It’s easy to pick out the events of the last decade that changed the world.  Not just due to the events themselves but to the changes that were required because of them. The biggest?  9/11. Katrina. Lehman Brothers closing.

Lehman’s failure and 9/11 were caused directly by organizations.  Katrina was a force of nature but New Orleans could have been more levee prepared and the aftermath better managed by the organizations in charge.

It’s human nature not to change when we’re comfortable.  And boy do we like to be comfortable!  Regrettably one person’s comfort is another’s denial.  How often have you heard “I saw it coming but nobody above me wanted to know.”  I’ve heard it and in a few very unfortunate situations I was the one who didn’t want to know.

Social media experts counsel their clients to put listening posts in several places online.  Listen to customers.  Listen to competitors. Listen to suppliers. It’s great advice!

Here’s the thing.  Listening has to start at the top. And it has to be okay for the other listeners to bring uncomfortable information.  Unless you’re looking for a rebellion, or worse a revolution, it really the only way.

The Disposable Laptop

I just spent two weeks without my laptop.  I didn’t realize I would be without it so long but after I did everything I knew I took it to the repair place I normally go.  They were three to four business days out just for diagnostics.

Oh. My. God.  I nearly fainted when I found out the cost.

Not because I had to replace the operating system.  Not because I was ambivalent about needing my documents and photos (yes I had backed them up to Carbonite a couple days before it went down – okay I thought I did but no). Not because I am against companies making a profit.

I nearly fainted because for another $100 I could have purchased a new one…every day of the week.

Could I have purchased the top of the line? No. But if I had to start over – and I pretty much did – then what was the point of keeping the old one?  Was I better off getting a newer, faster model?

I pulled up my big girl panties and paid for the repair.  I still love my computer.

The store owner told me within five short years computers will be disposable.  I don’t think we’ll have to wait that long.

Social media has offered up a ton of places online to keep photos, videos, powerpoints, documents.  Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Slideshare.  And mobile?  It’s already crazy out of control and we may not need laptops period.

Even for someone who loves the chaotic, messy, almost instantly obsolete world that is the internet that feels insane!

Are You In Their Twenty Percent?

Very insight post today on Amber Naslund’s blog.  She has a list of Social Media “topics that must die”.  One of them concerned the value of high numbers of followers and friends.

Earlier today on the way into work I was listening to a Success Magazine CD featuring an excerpt from Jim Rohn.  The topic was the Pareto Rule better known as the 80/20 rule.

It’s not often that two separate lines of thought mesh together so perfectly on the same day.

Eighty percent of everything is noise.  Why do we focus on that rather than the twenty percent that actually makes a difference?

Maybe because there’s so much of it and it’s constant. Who would have ever believed that people dream of being completely unplugged one day a week?!  There’s so much information and conversation available to us we’ve become afraid of missing any.

A sad state of affairs.

Oh.  A sudden thought came into my head.  Maybe it’s not the 80% we wouldn’t miss that frightens us.  Maybe it’s not knowing how many people have us in their 80%.

If You Lie About One Thing I Won’t Believe Anything Else

I was introduced today to a man by a friend who told me he did data information systems.  That’s neat and boy is there a need for it.  I agreed we should talk sometime.  They left my office and almost immediately the man came back in.  He had not understood that I had my own company.  He thought I was my friend’s employee.  We laughed and I explained I spend most of my time optimizing online activities to drive traffic to client websites.

Then the most amazing thing happened. He gave me his card.  Not only did he do information systems he developed ecommerce websites, provided SEO, developed PPC campaigns, was a social media expert, SQL databases, etc.  There had to be ten to fifteen things on the back of that card.

“Oh, you do SEO, too?” I said.  “Not really” he replied with a small smile.   We chatted a few more minutes and he insisted we meet – there were opportunities to work together.

I’m not going to hold my breath.  He already proved he doesn’t tell the truth.

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Who In The World Would Do That?

As a kid I used to watch Popeye faithfully.  We used to laugh hysterically at Wimpy asking for a hamburger that he would pay for later…who in the world would do that?

An example of street markets accepting credit ...
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In the forty years since we’ve become a nation of Wimpys.  Need inventory?  Okay, we’ll pay for it later.  Need office supplies?  Get out the credit card and we can pay for it later. Need food, clothes, vacations and pay with cash when we can do it later?  Who in the world would do that?

What we’re learning to our dismay is there is no later.  No more time to avoid paying our credit cards, no more time to avoid health care costs, no more time to avoid getting a social media strategy.  It’s been a helluva fun time but the sins have come due.

Procrastination has become more than an amusing tee shirt or annoying spouse trait.  It threatens the foundation of our businesses, our families, our lives.  We rail against the government, the school boards, the hospitals for cutting services.  We want every service to remain intact even though there isn’t enough money to pay for it.  Unfortunately they followed our lead and we were okay with it.  Now that they can’t do that we are enraged.  Who in the world would do that?

We have a lot of tough choices and a lot of businesses are going to suffer.  What won’t help us through this time though is outrage directed at anyone but ourselves.  When we change ourselves we change our world.

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Sometimes Coming Full Circle Means You Didn’t Learn The First Time

I became leery of 19th century class books after I delved into Madame Bovary.  Not to ruin it for any of you but the book is full of despair and the ending is tragic.  I needed a vacation after that.

I never read any business book published before Theodore Levitt.  What could books offer that were written before fax machines, FedEx, computers, wah wah wah.

It’s a good thing you continue living as long as you continue learning.

One of the members of my Mastermind group suggested we all read Scientific AdvertisingAnother suggested we start with his original My Life In Advertising.  They were written in the 1920s and were in the public domain.  I said okay and went to Google Books and downloaded it.  We devote a segment of our weekly meeting to discussing a couple chapters.

It is astounding!

Claude Hopkins (1866-1932) understood customers had to be pulled in through value given first. That free samples or guarantees created trust. The word of mouth advertising was far more important than a “well turned phrase”.  That people wanted to feel their vendors understood what was important to them.

Is this not social media?!

Coupons, samples, joint ventures, copywriting.  These were Hopkin’s gifts to the sales and advertising world at the turn of the 20th century.  Here we are well into the 21st century and we are returning to these simple, successful practices.

I have learned so much from Claude Hopkins that I am starting to consider him a mentor.  And how many people can you say that about 78 years after they died?

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