Monday, November 14, 2011

search engine optimization

Yes, that's right. I'm using a wikipedia article as a source. Why? Because I searched "search engine optimization" in google, and wikipedia was a top result. Clearly, they rock at SEO. 

SEO is improving the visibility of a webpage or website in search engines. Search engines use algorithms to decipher what order your results appear in when you search. Generally speaking, the higher your site or page is on the search engine results, the more views/visits it will receive. 

If a company effectively uses SEO, it can be a great marketing opportunity for them. 

Article two presents 11 steps for using SEO for your company. From Keyword Research, to Web Analytics, it's important that you are SEO-conscious when you are creating your website, updating your website, or posting to your blog. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

there's an app for that


Section 4 of the first article discusses the ethical effect mobile apps are having on society. I think some really interesting points are made. Quicker communication, increased productivity, and entertainment at our fingertips can all be seen as positive impacts of mobile apps. It's all becoming increasingly more common. But at the same time, I can't help but wonder if we're lowering our quality of living. We can communicate instantly, which can be very helpful in some situations, but how is it effecting our interpersonal communication? And aren't there times when you wish you could just disconnect? Similarly, it's nice to have entertainment at our fingertips. Waiting at the doctors office is a lot less boring, but where in the past we may have talked to someone else and made a new friend, now we keep to ourselves and play angry birds. I think there are positive and negative impacts to all aspects, we just need to find a balance. 

Article two highlights just one blogger's favorite apps, but I think it expresses what we as a society find important. ShakeItPhoto- we want to share our lives and do it in style. Bloglovin'- we want to keep up on the latest gossip and stay "involved" in the lives of our friends. Grocery IQ- we want to increase productivity and simplify our lives. Again, I think that all of this can be seen from both a positive and negative perspective. The important thing is to find the balance.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

skype: changing the world one video conference at a time


In article one, we learn that the first video conference call took place in 2006. Now, 5 years later, Skype is common lingo. "Skype me" is heard often and telephone calls are becoming obsolete. (Okay, not really.) The potential is there, however. The first article introduces Skype-enabled TV. Working with Samsung and Panasonic, Skype developed a TV that allows users to make video conference calls using the Skype software. 

This creates a free opportunity for easier conference calls. Whether it be business/entrepreneurial needs (as the article discusses) or personal use. Imagine never making a phone call again and always seeing the person you were talking to. Is this, perhaps, where our world is headed?

Article two talks about how Skype has already changed the world. Skype is the embodiment of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). So, the way Skype works is by sending little digital packets of your voice to others just like email. Skype is a huge innovation and has provided many new opportunities for conversation and business. 

Monday, October 10, 2011

viral videos

And that's how you use viral videos for great PR. Everyone knows the Old Spice brand, and now they know the Old Spice guy. Plus, who isn't a sucker for a marriage proposal. Old Spice guy engages with his audience. That's what I call successful PR.

If you can get your video to go viral, you've got it made. Everyone loves youtube, and if everyone is quoting your video- they know your brand. The secret is making your video worth sharing. 

Top three tips from article 1:
  1. Humor
  2. Early Hook
  3. Originality
Article 2 discusses outreach. To get your video out there, you have to get the ball rolling. Share it. Make it available to be shared. Use blogs and forums to get the video viewed by your target audience.

Overall, I don't think you can just "make a viral video". You can give it your best and hope for results, but in the end, it's pretty hard to know what will take off and what won't. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

location based social media

I think the easiest thing to recognize with location based services (LBS) is the huge marketing opportunity. "For the same reason radio is a great advertising channel for retailers, LBS advertising is also valuable: because it can reach the consumer near the point of sale."(Via article 1)

However, I am really glad that the first article points out the battery life issue. My biggest personal issue with location based anything is that my GPS kills my phone battery. As the article points out, Foursquare has done well in setting up their "check-in" feature so that you don't have to run the battery-sucking GPS all the time. 

The second article addresses safety concerns. The author suggests three options for staying safe on LBS.
  1.  If you're worried about your safety, don't check in. Maybe LBS aren't for you.
  2. Share with trusted friends only. 
  3. Only check in as you're leaving a location.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

traditional views

“But newspapers continue to perform an incredibly important function as informational gatekeepers – a function, as far as I can tell, that grows more important with time, not less. Between them, for instance, the Times and the Post have literally hundreds of trained professionals whose only job it is to sift through the mountains of information that come out of the various levels of government and find what is of value and of importance to the rest of us. Where would we be without them? We’d be lost.” - Malcom Galdwell (Via Article 1)

The Author of the first article disagrees with this quote, and I think I do as well. I think that as social media gets bigger and bigger, things like blogs depend less and less on newspapers. Yes, newspapers are gatekeepers, but each blog author is a gatekeeper themselves as well as the readers of blogs. 

I like the commentary in the second article about blogs having more readers than newspapers. I do think that newspapers are fading out. I think there is still a place and a market audience for them, but I also think people are finding that they like social media news outlets more and more. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

a blog on blogging

"Blogs are different. They evolve with every posting, each one tied to a moment." (From the first article.) Blogs make conversations open to the world. Mass media is changed because of blogging, simply for the reason that suddenly anyone  is a writer and an expert on whatever they claim. And, publishing is essentially free. So, everyone's opinion is out there.

Businesses connect to blogging in so many ways. I think it's important to understand that the blog world is 'cliquey'. Fashion bloggers tend to read fashion blogs, tech people like to read tech blogs, and people who like to cook like to read food blogs. But, it's more than that. Blog-types are segregating YOUR target audience for you. If you can find the right blog to advertise on, you just hit your target audience. 

It fascinates me how many bloggers have their own businesses. is an online shop for buying and selling handmade, vintage, and arts and craft supplies. Many bloggers have their own Etsy shop which they advertise for on their blog and other similar blogs. They have this target audience thing down. According to the second article, you need to focus on making your blog personal and insightful- not simply an advertisement for your work. 

I see blogging as 'acceptable voyeurism'. If you are choosing to blog, you're choosing to let people read about your life, see your pictures, and know about your activities. And people are reading it every day. However, you are the gatekeeper here. So, let people see what you want them to see. If you want them to see you and your business as professional and worthwhile, you need to portray that through your blog.

Take time to find out what your blog readers want to see. If you keep their interest, you're going to keep their sales. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Social Media and Religion

#Twible? Entire congregations on Facebook? Here's the big question: Is the collision of social media and religion a good thing, or not?

I think it depends entirely on your perspective. Some might say that 'marketing religion' would take the faith out of it. While others might see social media as a new outlet for sharing and expressing their faith. Miss Jana Riess,  is going through the entire Bible in 140 character tweets. So, not only is she reading the Bible daily, but she's 'translating' it into a more modern terminology and posting it for the world to see. IMO, she's probably getting more out of the Bible than she ever did before. 

Pope Benedict XVI sees social media as a great opportunity, but warns that online relationships cannot take the place of interpersonal relationships and advises caution. 

Social media is becoming such a ubiquitous tool for anything and everything we do these days. To get the most out of it, you've got to be smart about what you put into it. So, again I say, everything we already know about social media usage applies. Be transparent, manage your online reputation, and don't post anything you wouldn't want your grandma to read. If it's your style, then social media is a great way to be a missionary and share your beliefs. 

What do you think?

Monday, September 5, 2011

social media: the big 7


The thing I find interesting about comparing blogging to facebook, is that so many parts of the two overlap and are overlapping more every day. For example, facebook has 'notes' which is essentially your blog on facebook. Though, I don't know many people who use it well. There are also many apps which allow you to directly post your blog posts to your facebook wall. So, either way, any time you're blogging, your facebook friends know about it. 

The first article talks about the use of the 'like button' as a valuable marketing tool. This is not unique to facebook. Because you can directly post your blog posts to facebook, friends can now like your posts. If you create a facebook page for your blog, friends can like that too. And with google's new +1 button, blog readers can also +1 all of your individual blog posts as well as your blog.

In the second article, the writer lists tips on blogging. The interesting thing, is that you could change the title to Facebook tips, and all of the same things would apply. Know your stats, use keywords and hashtags, be you. 

In my opinion, to have an effective social media campaign, you can't use one social media outlet, and not another. You've got to hit them all and be consistent. Sure, it is possible to blog without using facebook, and  vice versa. But, to get the most out of your campaign, you've got to integrate them all.