How to…

How to buy better: buy only things you need.

How to optimize your phone calls: don’t respond incoming calls outside your “time for calls” unless you know they’re critical.

How to find meaning: having a mission and following this path through.

How to sell better: give your customer the double – at least – of value for what it pays to you.

How to take risks: decide faster than ever. Don’t think too much about what’s going to happen if you fall. Just fall.

How to get it right: getting it wrong first.

How to sell your personal brand: selling results, facts, and proof.

How to collaborate: looking only for the “win-win” equation.

How to communicate more effectively: staying more human.

How to do a greater marketing: creating a greater product or designing a greater service.

How to live the good life: being present, falling in love with the moment.

How to be more aware: getting in the habit of noticing unnoticed things.

How to get the best of and adventure or journey: dancing with the unknown, alone.

How to achieve anything: standing out from your inner self.

The point isn’t in “how to”, but why and when.

Ready?

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How to set the difference as a freelance worker

Freelancing, for me, is possibly the best profession there is. Maybe this is because I consider myself part of a legion of agents of change. Freelancing is a job where you can decide how to make a difference, how to stand out, how much you’re going to work, where and how you’re going to do so. You work for a living (the money factor is involved) but, moreover, you work to be happy doing what you love. That is, you choose yourself to the fullest extent.

freelance - how to stand out

Freelancing is a way of life where you need no one’s permission, only your own drive. There’s no one there telling you exactly what to do and how to do it. This involves great responsibility and also a great opportunity. You decide exactly how much of your own time, effort, passion and interest you put into it. The outcome hangs on this.

How to set the difference as a freelance worker

This post includes a number of practices that could be the fuel you need for your freelancing work to stand out, tweaking whatever you feel needs changing. After all, it’s up to you:

  • Create your own personal / professional brand: a freelancer without a personal brand is like the weatherman without a Meteosat satellite. You can find  some tips, here.
  • Ask yourself three direct questions (or more): 1. Choice: why do you want to start freelancing? (Tip: here are some valid answers: being master of my own time; not obeying orders, but leading; working on what makes me happy; living the life I always wanted to lead). 2. Change: what are you going to do differently from other freelancers? (Tip: look for your answers in the micro-segmented services offered to specific online communities). 3. Grabbing attention: how am I going to discover you? (Tip: use your creativity).
  • Communication: everything you do has something to say about you, so you must align your online and offline activity to convey a unique, cohesive, human and truthful message.
  • Choose your clients: be careful with what you do, say, share, respond to, sell or discard.
  • Use connected marketing: find your audience (those interested in what you do and say) and ask them or research how you can add value and be useful for them. And then, do just that!
  • Show your vulnerability: be yourself, mix what you do with your own peculiarities or eccentricities. Counteract criticism by doing your best work and openly talking about what you do best and the results you get. Find an opportunity to face your most critical audience and present yourself to them the best way you can. This wouldn’t be wrong; quite the opposite: it can lead you to meet people who value what you have to offer and who want to do business with you because something in you resonates with them.
  • Social media can help but isn’t creative: if you don’t have an idea, project, initiative, product or service that changes things in your target market, one that is really worth taking the plunge for, then my advice is don’t bother working on the social media aspect: it won’t fix anything. Continue working on something that is at odds with the world. Social media helps to show yourself to the world; however, your creation is what you have to show the world.
  • If you generate waste, you’ll amass waste: if you spend your time talking about others’ failures, pointing your finger every time someone makes a mistake, sending tweets complaining about the lack of professionalisation in your industry or gossiping about the poor work your competition is doing, then waste will be creeping up on you at home. Your own cynicism and negativity will prevent you from seeing all the ways you can fail and how you can get back up to grow further and stand out.
  • Online reputation: As long as you don’t decide that it’s a good idea to show up to a meeting with potential clients stark naked; as long as you don’t appear shirtless in photos, “cross-eyed” or kissing a girl who isn’t your girlfriend; or as long as what you say and do causes no harm or suffering, or can’t be considered to be stalking other people or breaking the law in any way. As long as you don’t do any of the above, don’t worry about online reputation; worry only about achieving results.
  • The best marketing: keep your promises. If you say you’re going to do something, then do it and keep your word. The worst marketing is doing otherwise.
  • Your goal is what matters: the great drawback to being self-employed is the responsibility involved. Working freelance requires a much higher level of responsibility than being a hired worker. Essentially, this is because you go from being the person who does whatever their boss or area manager tells them to, to being the person who has the drive, takes the risk, plunges forward and makes things happen. You need well-defined objectives for this.
  • The new king or queen: it isn’t content but the result you achieve. So leave content aside for a while and focus on your work to exceed market expectations or to get your product to your client in less than 24 hours. If you do all this well, results will speak for themselves and get everything else rolling.
  • Build your digital empire: you must establish your online operations centre. Attacking: traffic, leads, conversations, branding and connection. Defending: active listening, monitoring and community. Use the platforms and tools that best suit your purposes so you can get your message and history out there, finding the drive that will get people to find you.
  • Work flow: organise your workload. Freelance workers are their undertaking’s own managers, administrational staff, bosses, interns and technical staff. Productivity is essential. Find ways to be efficient and prioritise your workload in a way that allows you to move forward.
  • Work structure: define the tasks you need to carry out weekly and monthly so that all areas involved in your work are complete. Take into account the deadlines of the different projects you’re involved in, meet up with people who can collaborate in your projects, think about their part in the project; and remember to invoice your work, prepare sales pitches, retrain professionally, get your brand going (posts, podcasts, videos or any actions you define), etc.
  • Learning process: find the best way to learn about your field of specialisation at all times, spending at least one hour every day (two if you don’t sleep much) staying up to date with any developments that interest you. Tip: be careful and try to be strict in regard to places and contents, the blogs you subscribe to, hangouts or webinars you attend. Otherwise, you will be overwhelmed and can end up spending more time reading and handling all this information than working!
  • Blog: my opinion, experience and results, and that of many other work colleagues who have at some point or other been freelance workers (or who still are): Juan Merodio, Carlos Bravo, Paco Viudes, Víctor Martín, Aitor Contreras, Álex Rubio, Berto López, Amel Fernández, etc., is that you should create a blog to expand on your personality, skills, attitude and specialisation beyond the people who you are in contact with in real life.
  • Productivity: find tools that make your work easier, either by investing the same time to create more or working less to live more.
  • Leverage: if you’re a freelance web designer who’s been working long enough to have gained ample experience and your personal brand has been developed in such a way that a considerable amount of people are interested in what you do, then you can use your influence to develop projects that are leveraged by your current work: for instance, training, writing a book or starting a consultancy company.
  • You don’t work for everyone: since you have to meticulously choose where you invest the limited, valuable time available and your limited resources (compared to any organisation), this is the time to work only for the people you feel at ease with, those who value your work, the jobs you enjoy doing and that you feel can contribute to change (and viceversa).
  • Keep your ego in check: no one escapes this. Perhaps being self-employed, making it ‘on your own’, not having anyone run your life, control your time or supervise your results (clients aside) may make you fall in the trap of making you believe you’re better than anyone else. You could pay for such mistake but it will be interesting for you to run into that wall!
  • The rule to success: you want to make it? Get to the top? Get it all under control? Then you must be prepared to work without a rest, without a break, holidays, days off and work more nights than you’d ever wished for and over Christmas for the next 5 years. Being ready and willing to go through all of that is getting there!

You’re self-employed and you have one of the best advantages life has to offer: being master of your own time. Stand out and set the pace, decide what it is that you feel like changing, find out how and then do it.

Photo credit: Steve Kodis.

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A “how to” solution for life-changing messages

You suddenly get an email, LinkedIn or Facebook message, a DM on Twitter or, better still, a Whatsapp message regarding a life-altering project, conference or idea. You know the one; the train that only goes by once in a lifetime (even if you receive “life-changing messages” of the sort every day!) The thing is: this is the project of a lifetime if you’re willing to do it selflessly. Oh well!

solution life-changing messages

Answering a life-changing message

I offer you a series of tips, questions and issues to mention whenever a “life-changing message” arrives in your inbox:

1. Formality: “Thank you [person’s name] for thinking of me for such an opportunity. I feel truly flattered. I find your proposal really interesting [that is, if you really find it interesting; otherwise, you’re better off ending your message soon in a direct, yet polite and elegant manner.] I have a few questions that could help me to better understand it.”

2. Intro: “What you propose sounds really good and I’m willing to get on board. However, in order to focus my energy on your idea I need something other than a simple goals-based incentive. I need to see that you believe in me as much as you say you do. What would you call that trust, interest and passion for me and my work?”.

3. Attack: “If possible, I’d like you to get into the following issues in detail:”

  • What can you offer me that can be of interest to me?
  • How would this help me strengthen what I’m currently doing?
  • What do you know about me?
  • How do you know that what I do can strengthen what you’re looking for?
  • What would my goals be exactly?
  • How will you assess whether or not I meet those goals?
  • Besides what I stand to gain if I accept, what else would I gain if I meet the goals?
  • What would be my specific objectives and responsibilities were I to become a part of your (company, event, etc.)?
  • What is the duration of the project / idea / collaboration / workshops?
  • What resources would be available to me (team, transport, expenses, equipment, budget, etc.)?
  • Can I count on the people I work with?
  • Can you send me a contract with everything we’ve talked about?

4. End: “I think that once these issues are clarified, if we’re on the same page then we’ll be able to get down to it and start whenever you’re ready.” (Here’s where you include the final greetings).

And then…

There are two options after this. Firstly, you never hear from that person again. Secondly, they get back to you. If their answer has nothing to do with your questions or, simply, if they don’t answer them directly, then you can politely say ‘thanks but no thanks’ and move on to something else. If they do answer specifically and to the point but you’re not interested, then same again. Otherwise, if you’re interested, get on with it!

This post is yours. Copy it, save it on your Evernote, on Del.ici.ous or in your notes. You can use it as a template whenever you feel like it. It will save you time and bother every time you get one of these life-changing messages.

Was this a useful tool?

Photo credit: Will Lion.

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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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13 ways to add human understanding to the Internet

If the Internet is made up of people, I don’t understand why brands use the Internet to communicate and market their products in a way that keeps them at a distance from human relations. If human relations are the essence of the social media, I don’t understand why no one is connecting and humanising instead of just sending out the same message 100 times, aiming to have an impact or simply wanting us to click on an ad in Facebook, LinkedIn or during a YouTube video.

add understanding to the internet

How to add the human touch and understanding to the Internet

Thinking about this, I hope some of the things included here may help us to understand the term “humanise” in regard to the Internet and social media.

1. Establish the foundations for listening: spend your time processing everything that’s being said about you or your organisation and do something with this. For instance, you can offer an answer to your audience. You may not know this but they’re the new “killer App”.

2. Respond to LinkedIn invites in a personal way, reviewing the other person’s profile, taking care in how to word your message to connect with the other party. Offer individual personalised answers and don’t use templates. It works for me. The same goes for emails.

3. Start or finish any comment, message, tweet, recommendation, review or shared content by naming the person you’re addressing.

4. Always answer any comment made and try to do what you’d like people to do with you: leave a comment, RT, “like”, “recommend”, “vote” or mention.

5. Speak positively, deal with situations with optimism, even when faced with harsh criticism or comments. Don’t lose your nerve and let humour reign. Researchers from Georgia Tech found that staying positive, useful and resonating is a tactic that leads to the trust and credibility needed for people to purchase at our store.

6. Look for ways to be innovative, staying true to yourself. For instance, use a word or catchphrase that is close to you, even one you make up. For instance, “rock on”. It may seem daft but try it out and see.

7. Look for conversations that are close to your interests. For instance, the contact made between a designer and a programmer to create a new blog, or contacts made between food lovers and the cooking blog you’ve discovered. So, make that introduction, connect!

8. Take an interest on subjects that may also be of interest to your audience and offer them information. For instance, if you’re a hotel, recommend tour routes. If you’re a dinner restaurant, talk about places where you can go for a drink later or recommend clubs. If you’re a club, recommend a good after-party.

9. Filter information that may be useful to your community and transform it into actionable points you can work with. For instance, if you provide a guide on how to install plug-ins in WordPress, explain exactly what plug-ins you need to install and summarise the steps you need to take in a direct way. Otherwise, you’re not really contributing anything new.

10. Perhaps through your experience and knowledge, even through your failures, you may extract conclusions, reflections or moments –transferred into content- that may connect with your audience and which betters them. This would be equipping them. Try talking about when you lost your nerve with a client, when you launched a campaign with the wrong target or when you paid your Facebook “Ads” with the wrong credit card.

11. Look for conversations regarding your brand on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Google+ (hint: look for hashtags and keywords). When you find them, engage in them, contribute your point of view, share, recommend, provide information or clarify doubts.

12. Every time you want to read something interesting, spend 5 minutes looking for it among the content posted by your audience / followers / fans. You’re sure to find something worthwhile, something you can share and recommend. We’ll be grateful!

13. Ask your community what they want from you, don’t be afraid! Then, work towards making it possible if you can’t offer it right away. For instance, if people complained that there weren’t enough women in your last event, work to fix this in time for the next event.

Obvious?

I honestly think I’m not really discovering uncharted territory here. Neither is it a cure for all. Similarly, discovering humanity on the Internet or in social media is a greatly complex task. A paradox perhaps? What do you think?

Photo credit: al shep.

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What to do with your online influence

online influenceAre you influential on the Internet and the Social Web or any other field influenced by this connected economy? Tip 1: all fields have been affected. Tip 2: we’re all influential to some extent or other. However, what do you do with this influence? Anything at all? Have you ever thought about doing something that benefits not only you but helps those who probably provide you with such influence?

To save you some time racking your brain, here are some tried and tested ideas that may help you return some of that influence to those who created it and deserve it –your audience, community, fans, followers, supporters, you name it. Clue: Lady Gaga, Calvin Harris, Avicii, Brtiney Spears, Ashton Kutcher, Pete Cashmore, Robert Downey Jr. or Sergio Ramos aren’t really considered to be part of your community.

Things you can do with your influence

So, here are some ideas that will help you know what to do with your influence so that you can contribute to helping the people who make you influential.

  • What about dedicating a section in your personal or professional blog to talk about the people around you who’re doing a great job? This can be local businesses, your own team members, stories from people you don’t know but who inspire you, stories that may also help your community and readers. You could do this on a set day of the week (Fridays for instance?) or every other week.  You can give it a special name to identify this series of posts.
  • Create a local event making the most of your reach, influence and network so that people with great ideas and best practices can take part, people who may not have 10,000 followers on Twitter or a fan page on Facebook. They may not even have a blog, so no one needs to freak out and start running. You may encourage them more than anyone else and, more importantly, make them known to people in your network who would benefit from meeting them. There are several options: seminars, round-table conferences, workshops or even online events.
  • Prepare a monthly video recommendation about the person who has contributed, helped, impacted, encouraged or influenced you and your people the most. This doesn’t necessarily mean the person who has done the most for you. Sometimes, someone will simply arrive and do something that no one else has done for us. It could be the polite way someone greets you or treats you at a restaurant or hotel, or a good morning smile when you’re going to breakfast or a sincere apology that was truly unnecessary.
  • Make the most of your YouTube channel to interview young entrepreneurs who know what they want. Let the businesspeople in your neighbourhood/town/city tell the story of how they started a business that is now the leader in online sales, ahead of their competition.
  • Talks and meetings with young people who’re off to university or university students who’re about to finish their studies. These two groups are often lost in this system. Your influence may become a beacon to them.
  • Share interesting businesses in your area or neighbourhood in your Twitter or LinkedIn accounts. I’m not talking about multinationals, but rather local businesses.
  • Use Foursquare or Yelp to leave tips or reviews about these businesses and share them with your community so that people know about them. Checking-in and sharing on Twitter will also help. Tip: it doesn’t take an invitation on their behalf for you to recommend them or post a picture on Instagram. You may offer before getting anything from them; it’s a great way of helping.
  • You can use a hashtag on Instagram to upload pictures of places, people or businesses you love and that you believe others should know about and visit.
  • Go all-out and gather stories, experiences, thoughts and practices from ordinary extraordinary people who wish to inspire and equip other people through such personal and professional narratives.
  • #FF people who’ve helped you in your work during the week or more anonymous people who’ve made you change the way you interact significantly, or simply people who’ve had a special consideration towards you, someone from your team or professionals who’re doing their job well. I’d love to see more #FF for “ordinary/extraordinary” people and not so many rock stars!
  • When you want to help by sharing, don’t just RT or ‘share’; this requires a special gesture. Explain why you’re sharing, offer a personal reason why others should pay attention to it. This is the fun part, you can’t do this truthfully if you don’t read or pay attention to what you share. This is what leaves many “influencers” out of the game.
  • Use LinkedIn to recommend those service providers, workers, employees or entrepreneurs with whom you’ve had a satisfactory professional transaction or interaction.
  • Create an eBook about the people who help you in your day, month and year; publish it as a blog, on Twitter or other places. And please, keep it free of charge; getting to know these people should be a right, not a privilege.

Self-absorbed or change?

One more thing before we finish: there’s a good number of ideas to make the most of your influence to favour others in a positive way.

So, as you can see, there are myriad ways to do it. What we’re sometimes lacking is intention and purpose in using influence as a way to funnel change and not as a resource for personal gain, becoming increasingly self-absorbed. Being that kind of influencer is clearly overrated.

I’d love you to share with us any ideas that come to mind to make the most of online influence, helping to make a difference in other people. Thank you.

Photo credit: Stuart Foster.

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Other metrics you may want to consider to measure the social web

Besides the well-known metrics, old and new that exist for social networks, why not use the following measurements to better define your activity:

  • Related comments: who’s talking about your brand beyond your own community?
  • Actions: actions you’ve carried out. How many, how well did they fare, how long did they last, what were their results and their qualitative and quantitative impact.
  • Statistics of the impact of your content in real time: what happened before, while and after you uploaded content at an event, meeting, presentation, gig, etc. What has changed and how?
  • Percentage growth increase: compare natural growth in other years and estimate how much you should be growing this term, comparing whether you’re above, below or at the same level as your natural growth.
  • Compare yourself with your competition: use tools like hyperalerts to do this job. Measure engagement, reach, popularity and rank in Alexa and Google.
  • Conversions: using URL builder and Analytics you can know how many people visit your website from Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Youtube and go where you want them to go.
  • Reach, feeling, passion: use social mention to understand the qualitative state of your brand in social media.
  • Social assistance: how many interactions do you carry out with your community every day? What happens in these interactions, both positive and negative? How many are related to questions regarding your services and products? How many are related to direct or indirect sales? How many lead to future purchase? Which are the most frequent questions or doubts? What are the complaints about exactly? Then, do something with all this information.
  • Other tasks you have carried out: measure what else you’ve done besides the above. Work with other departments, collaborations in other campaigns, mediation with clients and suppliers. The fact that these tasks are less flashy or not directly related with your job doesn’t mean they don’t count!

We can always search for something simple instead of something complicated.

What other metrics would you consider in this list?

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How to make (anything) viral

how to make anything viralI find it interesting to listen to agencies, professionals, marketing directors or advertising specialists talk about virality. It surprises me when they decide to sit down and write something that will supposedly go viral. This turns into hilarity when they demand the video you launch goes viral, and it’s Utopian for them to think that the work they do will go viral. Improbability arises when we expect an idea/virus to go beyond our own world perspective. That’s why we constantly fail in our attempts to reach virality.

Virality belongs to the people

It isn’t brands, Facebook, Adwords, Twitter or YouTube that cause virality. Virality comes from your ability to create something unexpected; something that has an impact and catches your audience unawares. Virality belongs to the people outside your circle of influence.

You will never go viral while you expect to conquer the meaning of the term ‘viral’, working on it endlessly.

Amazing beyond amazement

Matinée’s latest video, Ibizious, has gone viral; everyone’s talking about it. When they thought about it, they didn’t think about doing a viral video; they thought about making a video that someone would like, which would then replicate to many. The true value was in creating a video that had an impact, something out of the ordinary that would draw someone’s attention, anyone outside the people involved in the project: managing to amaze someone beyond our understanding of amazement. The video created change. What no one gets to see is the entire year that the people behind the video worked on it.

Consider a single person as viral

Seek making an impact on people who see the world in a different way than you do. Have such an impact on them that they cannot get to sleep unless they choose to make it happen: sharing your message with others. Start with one person. Then you’ll start to become viral.

Next time you think virally, think about how not to let one person rest until they share your message. And by this, I don’t mean spamming it to death.

Unfortunately, our perception of what’s viral isn’t the perception that the world has about the meaning of viral. Luckily, we can’t control virality.

Viral isn’t a thing; it just happens.

Photo credit: esalesdata.

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How to save time on the Internet and make something happen

save time on the social webGiven the increasing number of emails that our inbox receives each day, the hundreds of tweets we write or receive each day, toxic meetings and tons of information running to our door every day, there’s only one thing we can do: set boundaries separating work that really makes a difference from work that is merely good or completely mediocre and useless.

I’ve discovered a few boundaries on the Internet that help me save the time needed to make things happen and to get the work that matters going.

Meetings and events

Forget about meetings in person unless they’re indispensable, they have a purpose, a limited time frame and all attendees have a role appointed. Instead, you can set meetings on Skype or Hangout. My estimates are that a daily meeting with your work team shouldn’t be longer than 30 minutes; a meeting with a supplier, 15 minutes; and any important case, never longer than an hour. When you meet through Skype or Hangout it is always easier to get out of the meeting at the right moment.

Isolate yourself from networking events, conferences, workshops, seminars, presentations, webinars or blogtrips. That’s when you should be working. The best time to switch on is when everyone else switches off.

Social Media

  • Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn won’t make it happen. These are only platforms that will strengthen what you create and maximise your reach. Keep them open, it’s great if they pay you not to lose track of any conversations, keep track of people who mention you or answer messages or friend requests right away.
  • Use your tablet PC or smartphone as a recreational tool when you’re outside your workplace, on the tube, on the plane, train, on your way home for lunch, at home on the sofa, etc. It is then that you can check to see what’s going on in social media. Try to produce work when you’re sitting at your computer or standing in front of an empty blackboard and make the most of the time when you’re answering simple emails (those you answer to with an ‘ok’. ‘wow’, ‘great’…) to check Twitter, to Check-In, upload photos to Instragram or Pinterest or to record a video.
  • If you practice sport, consider making the most of your time by doing all irrelevant work then – checking on Twitter that a meteorite hasn’t fallen to earth.
  • Programme the post you want to publish in your blog the night before, and also what you’ll be tweeting about it. Answer any comments at the end of the day you launch. You’re not going to generate further change or earn more money by answering straight away.
  • Believe that the world doesn’t revolve around you. Give your community time to digest the information you publish. Distribute it according to a logical timeline.
  • When you join a LinkedIn group, ask for the “weekly digest” rather than a daily summary.
  • Sharing one extremely useful item of content a day is much more worthwhile than sharing 20 things that are run-of-the-mill.
  • Deal with any requests you receive from people with precise, straightforward questions. The aim is to have a more precise, well-defined and direct way to help them.

Mobile

  • Don’t use WhatsApp with your professional contacts, followers, suppliers or clients unless you want to be bombarded frequently. WhatsApp makes sense for 3 messages to the point; after that, you’re better off calling.
  • Ignore phone calls from unknown or hidden numbers. If something is important, they will leave a voice mail or they’ll let you know who they are and what they want.

Email

  • When you’re on the 5th message in the same email chain, make a phone call and get it sorted, you’re already wasting too much time.
  • Use different email accounts for each client/project. This may seem crazy, but it’s a great way to classify, optimise and centralise topics and such volume of information. I currently handle 20 email accounts.
  • The less words you use in your communications, the more time you’ll be saving. You’ll also realise that you can say as much in 200 characters as you were going to in almost 1,000. Simple is beautiful.
  • Unsubscribe from all newsletters you don’t wish to receive. And make a claim if you continue receiving them.

Processes

  • Keep a copy of everything you do in Evernote: emails, projects, proposals, ideas, reflections, etc. You never know where an idea can come from or, maybe, where you can use it again in a similar context.
  • Use keyboard shortcuts. If you work with a Mac, the spacebar works a treat!
  • Write down your ideas as items or doodles. It’s simpler, faster, easier to understand and more direct.

What other shortcuts do you take to save time on the Internet so that things can happen more frequently?

Photo credit: mgribby.

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How to succeed quickly in the Social Web and the Internet – disruptive version

success easy internetI usually get asked questions by email which seem very specific but are as vast as the universe itself. These questions are of the following kind: “What can I do with my brand/company to position it on the Internet quickly?”, “How can I reach all my potential audience on the social web?” or “I need some advice to increase my company/brand on the Internet, help me!

Some are even more bold and direct: “What do I do to be successful in social media?”, “How do I maximise my effort on the Internet and social networks to obtain real results?”, “I need any type of advice you can give me to get results in social media” or “Could you give me any idea to sell more online?”

Success awaits you

Clearly everyone wants to be successful on the social web and Internet. And, of course, they, want that success to be fast, simple, effortless and using a special trick you download from the Internet. Oh, and I forget! It must also be free.

This is the answer to those who ask how to quickly be successful on the social web and in social networks overnight:

  • Help out a lot. Helping out isn’t taking advantage of a situation.
  • Share large amounts of useful and valuable content. Sharing doesn’t mean your own content.
  • Make it visual: use photos and videos. Remember they must be useful and valuable.
  • Say what you think. Be yourself. Use your own voice.
  • Just accept that many people won’t like you. That will help you focus on those who do.
  • Decide what it is you want to do and do it.
  • If you have something to say, say it.
  • Create chaos, start revolutions, bring about disruptive innovations, go against the flow.
  • Launch as many ideas as you can. Start things that are easy and quick to start, take on small risks.
  • Adopt a small movements strategy – those are the ones that matter.
  • Market what you do, make the most of every occasion, however small. Everything can be communicated. Marketing involves coherence, intelligence, subtlety and results. However, self-glorification means laziness, selfishness, despair and babble.
  • Do whatever may create change in people/customers and show it to the world.
  • Make your strong point your life constant in your daily work flow. That’s how you’ll be creating something that no one else usually does.
  • Come up with a blog that serves a purpose to both you and your audience, a blog that makes them better. Create it, launch it against the market and blog 366 days a year (yes, you read it right, 366!).
  • Don’t work for the likes, comments or RTs. Do it to get deeper into the problem and find the solution.
  • Consider euros in the bank as your end measurement. And work towards achieving them.
  • Invest time, Sundays, nap times, holidays, vacations and Christmas to creating your personal brand.
  • Connect in the most human way possible with the people you know in the social web. That’s what they’re expecting.
  • Use the social media universe  – not the other way round!
  • There’s life beyond LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest – just kidding!
  • Forget about online reputation and invest time in monitoring, analytics, ROI and online branding.
  • Ignore Whatsapp.
  • Be very active. You should be everywhere at all times, helping and being useful.
  • Don’t take calls while you’re doing important work.
  • Close Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and your email and do what needs to be done to make an impact.
  • Don’t accept meaningless meetings, only those with clear objectives, a defined agenda and with people in charge at every step. That is, accept only 5% of your meetings.
  • If you want to do business, go do it. But don’t say you’re going to network at an event if you’re there to do business.
  • Don’t go to so many conferences, seminars or workshops. Instead, spend more time with a blank sheet of paper and do, experiment, fail and try something different.
  • Being an expert won’t help you to be successful. It will only serve to see how wide, round and deep your own bellybutton is.
  • Change masters degrees and advanced courses for blogs, videos, TED conferences and your own experiences.
  • Trace your own plan, establish your goals, develop a strategy and find your spark.
  • Don’t say you’re an online/social entrepreneur, prove it!
  • Use all your followers, readers, fans and connections to promote those beneath you. It’s easy, doesn’t take much time and it seems to be a strategy that works.
  • If no one offers you to take part in an event, workshop, initiative or movement, build one yourself and invite yourself. Think of something amazing.
  • Results are king, not content.
  • Take the maximum possible number of fans, followers or whatever you want to call them to your website.
  • Use calls to actions wherever you go.
  • Take care of your community.
  • Talk to clients and ask them in what other ways you could help them.
  • Stay human and value human relationships above everything else.
  • Transparency, honesty, authenticity, coherence, being consistent and passionate, excitement and determination are the keys for anything to work.

I told you, overnight. You want to be successful? Then go and be successful.

You don’t claim or pretend victory, you win it!

Photo credit: marsmet541.

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