More doesn’t mean powerful

Before install a more (and new) plugins on your blog, think deeply if you need them, because the more plugins you install, the slower the website uploads. For example, look for plugins that covers – more or less – the same functions, All in One SEO Pack and Worpress SEO works quite the same, so choose one and discard the another, and if it’s already installed, feel free to uninstall it. In addition, XML Sitemaps it’s already included on WordPress SEO plugin, so if you go for this one, you don’t need to install XML Sitemaps because it doesn’t require another plugin. We can look at Permalinks also, they’re working customized on the blog, therefore they don’t need a plugin to carry on with their properties.

Bonus: let me give you an extra suggestion for a bunch of essential plugins that you may want to install in your blog for improve its performance:

  • Disqus Comment System.
  • ShareThis.
  • W3 Total Cache.
  • WP Smush .it.
  • WordPress SEO by Yoast (incluye XML Sitemaps)
  • YARPP Yet Another Related Posts Plugin.

Yes, less and fitted means powerful.

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How efficient is your blog?

I’m usually quite matter-of-fact in these actionable posts, so straight to the point! Here you’ll find 8 ways to help you measure how efficient your blog is.

blog efficiency

8 Ways to measure your blog’s efficiency

1. First of all, compare the natural growth of visits to your blog overall with regard to a similar period the previous year, and then the average visits for each post. Compare also the bounce rate, sources of traffic, social conversion, individual visitors, pages visited and average stay on your site and in each post.

2. Measure the number of people who unsubscribed to your newsletter, email or RSS subscriptions in the last month / quarter / semester / year. This way, you’ll understand whether your content is the right content for your community, if you have an interesting community and whether there is a connection with your readers. According to the measurements I carry out of my blogs and others I’m in contact with, the average rate is usually 2-3% per month at most.

3. Furthermore, check how may subscribers are RSS subscribers and how many are via email. If you have a newsletter subscription, how many subscribers do you have? Calculate this weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc.

3. Volume of comments in each post. The more comments you get, the more popular your blog is; the more popular it is, the more it’s read; the more read it is, the more it’s visited; the more visited it is, the more conversions you should be getting.

4. The number of “leads” you get every week / month. By “leads” I mean business opportunities. These will be different for every person depending on the type of blog you’re writing, the field and industry you’re in and the objective you seek. This could be a request for a quote regarding the interior decorating of a house in a home renovation blog; or, a question regarding the clothes you described in your fashion blog; it can also be a company contacting you for a PR activity through your advertising blog; or the proposal from an agency who wants to hire you as a speaker at a gastronomy fair through your food blog.

5. What is the reach of your posts without the use of social tools (Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Menéame, etc.)? This will help you measure your blog’s true influence, how influential it is on its own.

6. Of the visits you receive for each post, how many actually carry out the action you’re looking for. That is, how many visitors click on the “call to action” that will take them to your online store, to purchase the theme you’re recommending, to make the donation for the NGO you collaborate with, etc. Sometimes, this “call to action” may simply be for them to answer in the comments section the question you set in your post, or signing up to an event, webinar or conference.

7. Analyse the number of links on other blogs, posts or sites that each of your posts gets. This isn’t only positive at SEO level, but if you get many links, then you know your post is valuable and others are using it as a resource.

8. Recommendations that your blog receives between users in the social web: Twitter, Facebook, Google + or LinkedIn. Count also the number of times that your blog (or each post) is bookmarked in a social bookmarking site such as Del.ici.ous or Diigo.

What other ways to measure your blog’s efficiency can you think of?

Photo credit: Saurabh Shukla.

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Facebook Leads the Present and Happiness

I’m noticing more and more people talking about their lives on Facebook. It’s usually when you turn your head to a monitor or peek towards a smartphone or tablet that you realise that what you’re looking at is the Facebook homepage. I see mums and dads, sons and daughters sitting at a table and logging on to Facebook to see what’s going on. I experience dinners with friends, work colleagues or clients where the first thing they do is to ‘check in’, or update their Facebook status or send a tweet saying that they’re with the person they’re actually sitting next to. The funny thing comes when we decide to take a picture and upload it to Facebook for hundreds/thousands of people to see, or perhaps use Instagram. I’ll own up to the fact that I’ve done it and still do it, yet would prefer not to do it so often.

I’ll Exchange the Present for Facebook

We are so often obsessed by the social media fever –or, social networking- that we miss what’s going on in the moment. In a sunset I experienced very recently, I was impressed to notice that practically 80% of the people there were taking pictures of the moment for later. More or less 50% of them would be uploading them to Facebook; my curiosity took the better of me and I asked many of them, with most of them confirming my hypothesis. On the other hand, only a few were actually enjoying the sunset. They were all logged on to Facebook, following their friends’ and family’s lives.

Some time ago, e-mail was the top online priority. I wonder whether the social media have taken on that role now or, on the contrary, if they still come in second.

Facebook, the Verb

Here in Las Salinas, in Ibiza, where I live, there is a store 300 metres from home. I stopped there the other day to buy some water and fruit. There were two girls there who knew each other and seemed to have met there. One of them said (in English), “OK, I’ll Facebook you if we go out partying.” She didn’t say, “I’ll call you”. No, she said “I’ll Facebook you.” The verb.

How I See Facebook

I’m not a great Facebook fan. I like sharing my life with my friends. I don’t have an official fan page (though many have asked.) I’ll probably never have one, just like I’ll probably never be a superstar, an “Expert” or a “Guru” to have one. I do have an account with not too many friends, close to 2,000 (I’ve been on Facebook almost 4 years now.) I try to be selective and critical about my connections on Facebook. They’re my friends, those close to me, the people I want to share moments with. Not everyone. Sorry, I like to keep certain things about my life private to myself. I believe that almost all of my “friends” who are on Facebook –approximately 75%- belong to my inner circle of friends and family. Through Facebook I can follow the things that take place in their lives. I can take a look at pictures of their events, I can follow health-related news of the people I love. I can learn about their achievements, all those things we used to write letters or make a phone call about. That is how I see Facebook; at least in this context.

What about Facebook for business, as a professional or marketing tool? I haven’t reached that point yet. I still feel out of that game. I’m still trying to find out the magic formula.

However, I do believe that Facebook has changed the feeling of experiencing and enjoying the moment by the act of announcing to the world that you’re experiencing and enjoying that moment. It has changed your happiness by theirs.

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Launching isragarcia.com: Building Human Media Interactions

isra garcia- human mediaI’m finally launching my International blog: isragarcia.com.

I’m working with Oana Damian (Occasional guest posts and fluency quality control), Vicente Mora from Pim Pam Estudio (Design and creativity) and Dámaso González from Circulorojo (Web development, integration and implementation) A bunch of worldwide professionals will also join me along the path, it will be an exciting experience! Thanks to all of them for bearing with me.

I’ll be focusing on New Media, Human Business Interactions and what’s beyond Social Media and the Social Web, I’ll be talking about Human Media and how brands, people and organizations thrive harnessing the power of human media.

I had something to say to the entire world, this is why I’ve created isragarcia.com. I’ve built this platform for helping people and businesses to understand Human Media: The New Media. Thus, how human interactions are the key for the future success of businesses and brands.

I started following a map years ago – and I’m very happy to see where it has brought me. All is connected and has to do with my new role as international advisor.

The meaning lies where’s no sense.

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What You Can Learn

hope you learn something else than nothingPrepare yourself to be outside your comfort area…

  • If you embace change , you can learn how to succeed tomorrow.
  • If you don’t accept the commandments of this brainwashed society, you can Learn how to be an insubordinate.
  • If you break the rules, you will find that life is easier that people think.
  • If you ask your university teacher why is she using the same book as your sister did 10 years ago, you can learn that paying attention to your curiosity makes you different.
  • If you think outside the box and seek what is truly helpful and valuable for you, you can learn how to be an irreverent
  • If you realize that by your own, you can make a difference in this world, you can learn that impossible is nothing.
  • If you challenge the people that tells you how to behave and what to do, you can learn who are you
  • If you say yes where everybody else say no, you can learn how to be the best in the world.

So…If at any time you choose learning something, hope will be this…draw your map, be a Mapmaker.

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What Happened with Marketing?

What happened with marketing?Where’s Marketing? Isn’t trendy anymore? Doesn’t offer value for money as did it before?

What happened? Has suddenly Marketing mutated to a new form called Social Media Marketing? or it’s now Digital Marketing, as other people like to call it…Marketing 2.0 maybe? I wonder, if Marketing has just being replaced…or perhaps, it’s waiting for the right moment to make its unexpected appearance.

Has Marketing stopped making its well-known noise? – yeah, some of you call it conversation, right? – Does it means that Marketing has felt sleep? Or on the contrary, is marketing preparing a new revolution?

I just don’t know what happened with Marketing. Am I different from a couple of years ago? – Heck, I started in Marketing and now…what the hell! – I don’t see it anywhere….

I only can hope – and wholeheartedly wish – that we never forget it! Because, at the end we’re just looking for common sense.

What say you?

What happened with Marketing?

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What makes us give the best of ourselves?

This post was first published on the General Management UPDATE! for Fundesem Business School, area in which I participate as a guest blogger every 2 weeks. Thanks to Enrico Ahrens and Oana Damian for this wonderful opportunity.

Let’s think for a moment…How do you overcome difficulties? how do you surpass your own expectation? what motivates you? what makes you go beyond the line? or what is the reason that pushes you going the extra mile?

Yeah, it may sound foolish to ask this…You could reply my family, money, work, prestige, success or any material thing, and that’s OK, even it’d make sense! But, thinking carefully and paying attention to small details, we could be inspired by things like:

Fear is your strength

Let’s say I’m your boss and I told you that we’re about to close the company, because of the starting of the dramatically decline of textile on Spain. Everything you had fought for, all your dreams, your future and more important your family and their future. As days go by, things are getting worse, until the day we’ve to close the company and you and me have to start a new life from the bottom line, at that moment fear is running through your body. Is this the end? Are you kidding me? it’s only the beginning. I’m going to be clear in this; It’s OK being scared, so am I most of the times, we all scare for some different reasons, stop worrying about yourself, show people what is inside of you, don’t be afraid of being yourself and being fearful. Because if you do so, and deeply believe in you, in who you are and what you do, you will become what you know you already are, so go and have some fear, it what really awakes our brave self.

Be Proactive!

Being proactive it’s one of the key elements. We always must – and this is a great must – try to see solutions instead of problems, make things happen and not wait them to happen. It’s essential to us assuming and believing that everything occurs is under our area of influence, so we’ll always be able to choose. I like to thing that we’re the only ones responsible for our acts, hence we and only we, tailor our decisions either they’re right or wrong. we need and should want to make mistakes – and of course, recognize them and ask for forgiveness when we feel to – because experience has taught me it’s an unforgettable way to learn and improve,  are you OK with me? I am open to admit failure, as I believe it is also a great path to learn. What say you? Give a go and plan for failure, I sometimes plan for falling, hence I am ready to stand up and carry on. we don’t want to afford what people can think about us, it’s something that I am not concerned about at all. That is to say, know who you are, what  you can do, what you want to do and who you want o be. I know that  you change things – I am doing it now – though, which is even greater for me it is, I have realized I want help people changing things – perhaps you – improving their life, being proactive or trying to find a meaningful goal.

Attitude is the Key

It’s the only thing that will make you fall part from the mediocrity, and yes it’s learnable! but it’s a long road to walk, hope you’re ready. Sir Richard Branson used to say “Hire from attitude and train for skills”, want to know what is going to make you indispensable? I bet you know…heck, it’s the Attitude, towards life, work, family, friends, problems…life is not the way it’s, but the way we want to see it.

You’re Free!

I realize now of how happy I’m, happy because I feel completely free to build my story. I don’t let anybody decide or choose for me, not to mention the circumstances or facts. I’ve always managed my life in my way, I’m not going to judge the way it has been, – I’m not here for that – I only can judge the way I’ve made it possible. Your mileage could vary, but I’m sure you get the point!

Question Everything!

Change hasn’t been made by asking permission, but for asking forgiveness. It’s OK being irreverent, being curious and think outside the box, and of course it’s better acting in that way, you’ll find yourself in troubles most of the times, but someone said once that life it’s a beautiful struggle – I really love this quote! – OK, I can hear you saying that there’s no point of acting in that way without thinking in the consequences, yeah, OK, fine! However, think about a job for a life, a safe environment, TV advertisement, newspaper industry, call dealers or automated behaviors taught in school days…we live in a society where we’ve been planned to act in a very common way, the question is…does it mean that we’re doing it Right? or someone installed the wrong program?

What really interests you

It’s learning about life, developing yourself as in the professional as in the personal side, know more about everything, get new approaches, travel around the world, meet other cultures/people, your family and best friends or solve economic issues. It works too, if it makes you happy, of course. Are you in the list? get your reasons.

Your Soul

It’s vital feeding your soul…Knowing that my family and best friends believe in me. freedom, joy, do what I want to do when I want to, change, finding a partner equal to me and be loved works greatly well for me? what about you?

What about your Goals?

Set up a short/mid/long-term goal and set up deadlines to carry out them. It will make you go further that you can think. Makes sense?

Be a Catalyst for Change!

I believe in change as a part of human nature and as a part of everyone’s life. I consider change as a challenge, a challenge that keeps us aware, ready, flexible and expectant. I think change is the engine that makes us improve, expand our knowledge and gain valuable experience, as well as it’s be able to show us things from a different perspective. I’d dare to say that I embrace change in the sense of the meaning. Why? It’s simple. You cannot resist changing, because change wanders among us every day, so it’s impossible to fight the forces of change. What’s more, today, it’s even more difficult not to accept that change is becoming part of our day-to-day, hence trying to stop change  is exhausting.

I BELIEVE embracing change is something that has to do with thinking different, being irreverent, acting different, being yourself, do whatever it takes, challenge the status quo or stands out from the crowd. I do like to think that’s fun shaking your life from time to time to see what happens. Then, change is how ready you’re to adapt and deal with these new waves.

Vision for the Future

Note how I set apart vision from goals, I think it’s completely different. What’s your dream? How do you want being remembered when you die? What would you like people say about you when you won’t being with us? difficult to assume, but essential to understand. Set up an attainable and realistic dream, it has to be aligned with your values and principles and should respect your morals and ethics. Mine “Follow my dreams wherever they may go, and do whatever it takes to reach and make them possible

How do you think you’ll reach your vision for the future? that’s to say, How are you going to meet this dream? Do you know it? Nice! Now put it in words that make sense. Not as easy as you thought, huh? I’ll give you mine here too:

“It is reaching the highest standards of my values and principles, through determination, commitment, imagination, freedom, choice and empowerment. Whilst, I am irreverent, thoughtful and optimistic about life and change.”

Know your Mission

Are you tracking me? As I said earlier in this post your mileage may vary or even the keywords can be different, here I’m just telling you what it works for me – and it does it extremely well – when you find what it moves you, that is the first step, now apply, integrate in your life and make a comprehensible usage of them.

You?

How does it work for you? How does it sound?

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We Are Social Media Adventurers

Are We Social Media Adventurers?

Yes, we’re, indeed! Why? Because, I believe it’s exactly what we do, we are social media adventurers searching for new paths that lead to revitalizing and energizing experiences. We not only play strong, have fun and try, but we do all this things in a very different way, every time we face challenges and most of the times with uncertainty, fear and risk, isn’t it exciting?

As social media adventurers
, we believe that in today’s world a single person can make a difference, we’re IRREVERENT by nature and also, determined to at least try to make things happen, and… If we fail, be sure we’ll get up and “try different” – again and again – until we make it possible.

We are here to say YES, where everyone else says NO
, but also showing them that we’re able to engage communities through Social Media marketing. With Social Media, we can create movements and start leading small communities or bigger ones. But more important than this, it makes people believe that the change is possible. We have a big responsibility that goes far from our daily job in the office. We’ve the opportunity to tell others how to change the world!

As brave adventurers, we know where we are going and how to get there, but this isn’t enough for us, we always like to transcend our limits and go beyond the common communication and marketing barriers, so we will be able to offer an unforgettable interaction experience to our audience.

Undoubtedly, Social Media is a new world to explore and discover. I believe that as Social Media adventurers, we’re always looking to open new footpaths, we’re in a continuous search of new stimulus and excitements that makes feel us “hooked” to the Social Media adrenaline! This at the same time causes an irreversible addiction, which always claims for more and more challenges and breathtaking experiences – heck, I can’t wait for more! –

As Social Media Adventurers, we’re comfortable and familiar with taking great risks, we embrace change, mainly because we believe that the only constant thing it’s the change itself, no matter if the result wasn’t the expected outcome, we’re ready to take the lead and keep on playing, even harder than ever, because…have I mentioned it before? We deeply believe in ourselves every day of our lives and it turns being the best strategy!

As Social Media Adventurers, we are naturally irreverent – Yeah, I love being irreverent and I’ve mentioned this above – we’re eager to stand out from the crowd and challenge the Status-quo with our visions, beliefs and principles, but above all, doing this with an unstoppable wish to help the community and brand compelling reasons to believe in themselves. At the end, change’s made by changing, so we won’t hesitate to go the extra-mile for establishing human relationships and tying brand and communities.

As Social Media Adventurers, we are all struggling in the jungle and resisting the supernatural forces of change. However, what makes us unique is – in words of my friend Enrico, “we’re fans of the flexible planning“. That is to say, we move at the same time as trends and market opportunities, evolving at the same time as the social media ecosystem. We’re ready to ride the waves, we’re ready to take positions and emerge from the bottom as Social Media Adventurers who are willing to take the pulse of this new communication and marketing reality. Nevertheless, we can’t do it alone, we need you, we need you to join us and be our sidekick, our wing man. We want to share what we’ve learned, because as Social Media Adventurers – who have get through endless successes and failures – we all we know that, no matter how unbelievable and breathless our journey is, it doesn’t make any sense if we cannot share this experiences and adventures with somebody, this is the best gift that we can deliver, share both successes and failures… And not only share them, but celebrate them too. Okay, it’s obvious that successes are celebrated. Now have you failed? Great! Heck with the failure itself, celebrate it! Failure means the opportunity to learn something new.

As Social Media Adventurers, we serve to a cause, you! So, despite the depth of the gap, we’re determined to dig in the online world to find the best opportunities that can guide you to build a better future for yourself, your brand and those around you.

As Seth Godin said: “Good enough has stopped being good enough long time ago, now we´ve the opportunity of being great”! Let me add: “With Social Media, Yes! So…Why don’t we take it?”

Are you with me? What do you think?

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Get your ID and Make a Difference – On Fundesem General Management UPDATE Series

Now I’m writing for Fundesem Business School in its UPDATE series every 2 weeks. Therefore, I’ll link my No-Blog to the UPDATE, so you can take a look and get some new material to work on.

Over Fundesem General Management UPDATE, I wrote about  Get your “ID” and Make a Difference , about how people can find their “ART” in life (personal and professional) and make the whole difference. Pay close attention to the advice. People who tried, got some interesting experiences that helped them a lot (I’m one of them…)

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My 3 Words for 2010



Inspired by Chris Brogan and his post my 3 words for 2010, where he talks about 3 words that are being used as a guidance for setting and accomplishing goals, I’ve come up with my 3 own words for 2010, which I’d like to share with all of you.

Time

I should be more efficient with time management. It’s time to establish deadlines and patterns for processes as social media, mailing or meetings. I do believe that if I could optimize the time I spent in every task, project, tactics, process or strategy and determine the amount spent in each, I could make my day-to-day more productive and profitable.

Learn

As Socrates said: “I only know that I don’t know anything”. I really think that acting in that way will give me a deep sense of learning and will take me apart from the arrogance and the self-perfection. Therefore, I’ll learn from every person, situation, decision, action or whatever is ever made along the road.

Apply

As someone said to me once: “You may broaden your knowledge and perhaps you’ll learn a lot but, what is the point if you don’t put in practice what you’ve learnt?” I’ve never realized of that before but…I totally agree, it doesn’t make sense if you don’t apply what you read/hear/learn. I’ll start developing ideas about:

  1. What I already know
  2. What I’m learning/reading/hearing/observing as I go
  3. What I’ll learn/read/hear/observe through life’s journey

Hope this make sense.

And you? What are your 3 words for 2010?

I’d like to thank Chris Brogan for this insightful idea.

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