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Tips, Tricks and Insights To Take Your Blog To The Next Level

July 13, 2010

The humble blog has developed from small beginnings to become a multi-media rich social media technology platform for personal branding, corporate thought leadership, an outlet for people’s  Tips Tricks and Insights To Take Your Blog To The Next Levelhobbies, passions and personal interests and multi-million dollar business enterprises. Blogging is also transforming publishing and it is a great source of income for many bloggers who have discovered that passion and hard work pays!

There are blogs like Huffington Post, Techcrunch and Mashable that  have taken online digital publishing to another level whereas traditional media research shows numbers revealing that 24 of the top 25 newspapers in the US are declining in readership and revenue.

Blogs were initially very text based so common knowledge  deemed that if you can’t write you can’t blog but online personalities like Gary Vaynerchuk has shown that the video blog can be just as effective with his video blog driving his family wine business from $4 million annual revenue to $45 million is just 3 years.

So if you are wanting to optimize your blog and maybe even make some money here are some blog posts that may give you some inspiration to fuel your creativity and motivation.

1. 22 Secrets Of Power Bloggers

2. 50 Ways To Optimize Your Blog

3. 12 Blogging Mistakes To Avoid

4. Blogging For Dummies – An Opportunity For Personal Branding

5. 7 Success Secrets Of The World’s Largest Blog

6. 20 Reasons Why You Should Blog Before You Twitter

7. How Did A Blog Reach 2.6 Million Followers?

8. 10 Ways To Make Money From Your Blog Without Selling Your Soul?

9. 29 Reasons Why You Should be Blogging and Not Watching Television

10. Is Blogging The Future Of Publishing?

Have you taken your blog to the next level or are you still thinking about it?


10 Facts Reveal The Importance of Ranking High In Google

July 12, 2010

There is a a saying in the offline world of real estate that there are three things that are critical when considering buying property and they are position, position, position!! 10 Facts Reveal The Importance of Ranking High in Google
In the online digital universe there are also three things that are vital to your web presence or online store and that is ranking, ranking, ranking!!
In fact the online world is in essence no different to real estate in that the position of your website on a search ranking page (SERP)  can be the difference in 2010 between your business being a success or a failure. Getting found online when people type in a phrase or keyword is now so important that companies can rise or fall due to their results in a Google search when customers are looking online for your products and services that you sell.
Search engine optimization (also known as SEO) is the art and science of  moving a website or blog up in search ranking results and needs to be factored into the building and ongoing optimizing of websites and blogs for your business.
  • How important is it to be on the first page or ideally ranking number one on the first page?
  • How important is ranking to get people to click through to your site when there are thousands of other companies competing to be on page one?
It is  now known to be absolutely critical as research shows that 93% of all buying decisions start with an online search.
To put this into some perspective here are some statistics regarding click through traffic based upon the position that a page receives when entered into a search  engine (this is from a study leaked from AOL’s search engine logs):
  1. The first ranking position in the search results receives 42.25% of all click-through traffic
  2. The second position receives 11.94%
  3. Third position on the first page obtains 8.47%
  4. The fourth placed position on page one receives 6.05%
  5. The others on the first page are under 5% of click through traffic
  6. The first ten results (page one ) received 89.71% of all click-through traffic,
  7. The next 10 results (normally listed on the second page of results) received 4.37%
  8. Third page receives a total  of 2.42 %
  9. The fifth page receives a total of only 1.07%
  10. All other pages of results received less than 1% of total search traffic clicks.
These figures were obtained are from an article titled “Beginners Guide to to  SEO” that is certainly worth a read and which you can download from one of the top blogs on search engine optimisation, SEO moz.com.
What I also found from this source was that being listed at the top of the results not only provides the greatest amount of traffic, but instills trust in consumers as to the worthiness and relative importance of the company/website.
Do you optimize your website or blog for search?

10 Interesting Social Media Statistics

July 11, 2010

Social media continues its inexorable march into the mainstream web world and figures released by Nielsen Wire in June provide very interesting reading. 10 Interesting Social Media Statistics

  1. Social Media Networks and Blogs consume nearly 25% of peoples time online (one in every four and half  minutes online)
  2. The world spends 110 billion minutes on social media networks and blog sites
  3. The number of people who are visiting social media sites has increased by 24% over the last year
  4. The average visitor spends 66% more time on these sites than they did a year ago (6 hours in April 2010 versus  3 hours 31 minutes last year)
  5. Brazil is the top nation  when it comes to internet consumers with 86% visiting a social media network (74% of USA internet users visit a social media network)
  6. Australian users average the most time on social networking sites a month at 7 hours and 19 minutes (USA internet users average 6 and a half hours)
  7. Facebook’s reach is the  widest in Italy capturing two-thirds of the active unique audience in April (Which is higher than the English speaking countries USA, Australia and the UK at 60%)
  8. Japan has the lowest reach of Facebook active users at 3%
  9. Ameba the microblogging platform which is the Japanese equivalent of Twitter is visited by 38% of Japanese people online
  10. Facebook is the worlds most visited social media brand with 54% of the worlds internet population visiting the brand

Are Young Women Addicted To Facebook?

July 8, 2010

Social media addiction is becoming a reality in the online social networking world.Are Young Women Addicted To Facebook

A recent Study announced by Mashable and conducted by Oxygen Media exposes the extent to which social media addiction has become for young women by revealing that 33% of women under the age of 34 check Facebook even before they go to the bathroom in the morning. The study also revealed the ongoing privacy concerns that people about Facebook and sharing on social media by mentioning that

54% of 18-24 year old women do not trust Facebook with their private information, and 89% agree that “you should never put anything on Facebook that you don’t want your parents to see.” That seems contradictory to the 42% that think it’s fine to post pictures of themselves drunk“.

I recently mentioned  in a post about the worlds largest blog that one of the business drivers and reasons that Arianna Huffington started Huffington Post was  that she recognized the “obsessive compulsive nature of the web”.

Personally one of the the reasons that attracted me to social media was the observation that the web drove obsessive behaviour (where there is obsession there is power and opportunity) and  I had initially observed this in my teenage children as they dashed upstairs to check the computer straight after dinner and it wasn’t for the latest information or an email from a friend to help with their research for their assignments or homework.

I ran a recent poll more for fun than anything else titled  ‘10 signs you are addicted to social media‘ where to date 70 people have voted and the  results so far reveal that nearly 50% of people that voted admitted that they had 5 or more symptoms of social media addiction. There was a comment on the post by  Ashley who said.

“Hello, my name is Ashley, and I am a social media addict. Before I do anything in the morning – even turn on the lights- I grab my laptop at the side of my bed (because I had to check my Facebook and Twitter before I could fall asleep) and I check to see what kind of activity happened while I was sleeping!”

Maybe Ashley has stated the most obvious and important sign that indicates that you have a social media addiction is the answer to the question…

Do you keep your laptop at the side of your bed at night?”

Vote Now

5 Top Twitter Posts

July 7, 2010

I went looking for the latest  updates to Twitter’s ongoing global growth by trying to find the latest facts and figures.5 Top Twitter Posts

The Google search engine results delivered no significant updates that I could discover since their last announcement at their Chirp conference on April 14. It appears that the periodic secrecy strategy by Twitter continues.

In the meantime the recent Nielsen APAC webinar that I was invited to recently did reveal some other insights about Twitter.

  • Twitter Growth in Japan is over 1,900% (year on year)
  • Japans Twitter reach surpasses the USA at 16% of the active internet audience compared to the USA at 10% in April, 2010
  • 57% of Twitter uses in India have only started using the site in the last year
  • 32% of India’s social media users use microblogging sites such as Twitter at least once a day
  • Celebrity Twitter accounts are regularly written about in mainstream media in India

Twitter is obviously still growing and there is no buzz online that I can detect regarding Twitter fading or going away anytime soon. So what do people like to read about Twitter online?

According to readers that visit my blog, here are the Top 5 Posts on Twitter as ranked by readers views.

  1. How To Use Twitter For Business: 5 More Incredibly Interesting Case Studies (5,936 views)
  2. Twitter: 5 Business Case Studies (5,303 views)
  3. How To Manage, Measure And Monitor Twitter (3,766 views)
  4. Twitter Reveals 11 New Facts on its Traffic and Usage (3,732 views)
  5. 30 Predictions Of The Future For Twitter (3,631 views)

So how are you using Twitter and are you finding it effective in achieving your business and social networking goals?


7 Success Secrets Of The World’s Largest Blog

July 6, 2010

If you look closely at some of the top blogs in the world that have emerged over the last 5 years it is interesting to see what has made them so successful so I thought I would look at  7 Success Secrets Of The Worlds Largest Blog what has made Huffington Post the success that it is today.

Huffington Post is a blog that was started by Arianna Huffington as a left- leaning blog and  now has 20 vertical areas including religion to technology and it is about to add travel. It is interesting to note that they have just hired a technology industry veteran (not a traditional media publisher) Greg Coleman as their their president and and chief revenue officer who has previously worked for Yahoo and AOL.

Some of  the numbers for Huffington Post to provide some perspective from its entry 5 years ago to its current success.

  • Over 50 million page hits and more than 12 million unique vistors in May according to Compete.com.
  • Moderates 3 million comments a month using 30 moderators
  • 50 Editors
  • 21 Verticals

7 Secrets Behind The Worlds Largest Blogs Success

So what are some of the secrets behind the success of  Huffington Post?

1. Passion

Arianna Huffington revealed at the Web 2.0 Expo in New York that the secret to success is ‘Passion’ and the “obsessive compulsive nature of the web” is what first attracted to her to blogging and the ability for people to make a difference on the Internet by just pure persistentence and passion.

2. Social Media

They use social media and SEO (search engine optimization) tools to spread and share content virally fast and global. Each editor has SEO tools to optimize the content and social media tools right at their desks so they can connect their content to social media channels via Facebook connect or Twitter. The blog also allows readers to easily share the content with their followers and friends

3. Experiment Fast and Often

They can do this online and fast as they try different ways to grow the business from piloting different verticals and  experimenting with different ways to ways to share the content on social media. In other words fail fast, cheap and often.

4. Focus On Powerful  Niche’s

Huffington Post developed a focus on powerful emotive niche’s  that provided a large enough audience to attract traffic. As well as politics Arianna started with entertainment, media, living and style.

5. Create Content Cost Efficiently

It is believed that the Huffington Post provides a platform for for 2,000 bloggers both known and unknown that she doesn’t have to have them on the weekly payroll

6. Source Resources

A venture capital company (Softbank Capital) invested $5 million into the blog site in Agust 2006.

7. Develop Powerful Partnerships and Networks

The Huffington Post has forged powerful partnerships with other big names in content areas such as Rolling Stone, Variety and Yahoo and has had influential politicians and celebrities contribute to the blog such as Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Madonna

So what else has made Huffington Post one of the largest and most powerful blogs on the planet?

9 Ways to Create And Share Social Media Content At An Event

July 5, 2010

I recently attended a fashion show where my fashionista daughter had two of her fashion items entered and as a proud father I came along to support and cheer from the sidelines.9 Ways To Create And Share Social Media Content at an Event

My expectations of the fashion show were not high as it was only a local event in a regional city and we were not talking about the catwalks of New York, London, Milan or Paris. I did not for a moment think that it would be an event that should be more than just a nice outing with a dose of fashion.. boy was I wrong!!

The show had canapes, champagne and celebrities. It was sponsored by the major media and one of the largest retailer chains in the country and then the real ‘show’ began!

The lights dimmed and the ‘glamourous’ master of ceremonies came out to start the show and with that the DJ kicked in the sound as the the fashion models who were all selected from the local fashion college strutted their stuff.

The fashion that emerged was many including creative, beautiful, shocking and astounding. There was section for ‘recycled threads’  as well as swim wear, street wear and the red carpet. As I watched the show I thought “this is worth sharing” both from a personal view and as an event that is showcasing the fashion designers who want to get their name out there even if at this stage they are only amateurs. ( I did find out later that they had a Facebook presence)

The opportunity to market these up and coming fashion designers and provide them with more online exposure to take them to the next level was not optimized. So here are some ideas for creating and sharing content from an event for promoting your brand online.

1. Videos

Hand out video cameras to your employees to capture the buzz and the happenings as well as utilizing a video recording crew to record event. These can be posted on YouTube or submitted to an online social media Video distributor such as TubeMogul.com which provides a free service that provides a single point for deploying videos to the top video and social networking sites.

2. Pictures & Images

Create a Flickr account to allow attendees to submit photos to share. This provides crowd sourcing content that is free and remember that most phones now have high quality multi-mega pixel cameras. It does’t cost you a cent and provides your brand with more presence online.

3. Slideshare

Slideshare is a social media platform that turns your Powerpoint presentations, Word, PDF’s, documents and professional videos into slides for viewing online anywhere anytime. They can’t be copied but allows you to share the major points from an event.

4. Twitter

You can create a Hashtag for the event eg #fashionshow that allows you to see peoples reactions to the event in real time and to also create buzz about the event and your brand.

5. Blogs

Engage bloggers to blog about the event and you can aggregate their posts using a blog widget

6. Facebook

Create a Facebook page or group for the event to share updates before and after as well as being able to publish links ,images, videos and any other multi-media rich content

Frock On Fashion Event Facebook Page

7. MySpace

Even though Myspace has been overwhelmed by Facebook in the mainstream sense a MySpace presence should be included if it a music or video centric event aimed at a younger demographic.

8. Website

Also don’t forget to publish content both before and after the event on your website. (It helps if you have a website developed using a CMS  (Content Management System) that allows easy uploading of content without hving to know programming or HTML.

9. Digital Media Aggregator

Digital Media aggregation allows you the opportunity to provide a portal where all or most of your content from the event can be viewed

For more information and resources on how you can leverage your digital and and social media events see a case study by Alan Belniak on how he did it for his company PTC a global software company.

So how have you created and shared your event on social media?

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