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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8 tasks that define a social media workflow

In 2010 I spoke about the social media workflow to handle and optimise the time and effort you dedicate to social web activity. I updated this in 2012 with a new version that included a graph designed by Luis Calabuig.

While adapting this for a new project, I quite recently realised that this workflow could be further completed by describing its steps and adapting them to the current times.

Which 8 tasks define a “social” workflow?

The following tasks will optimise the time and effort you dedicate to your social web workflow.

1. Reputation – Active listening.

Monitor and follow up on key words regarding what people say about the brand from one day to the next. Analyse and classify mentions according to their nature (positive, negative or neutral.) A new tool has recently appeared to help you with this: SocialVane. It has an interesting ‘artificial intelligence’ feature: the more you use it to filter words out, the more it can classify mentions according to their nature, offering better search and filtering results. There are other tools on the market that can do this, such as Pirendo or Mention. The latter is quite complete, boasting a more comprehensive search feature that searches not only across social platforms but in other channels too.

Once you’ve gathered and analysed this information, select the results that are of greater interest to your organisation. Present a daily report or document with active links to each news item, mention or post.

2. Updating and interacting.

First of all you will need to define your social objects according to a content plan (a day early or even previously for the entire week or month; see below.) Now you need to create this content and disseminate it using the different channels available, not only social platforms. Interaction is another significant moment in your workflow: respond to comments, offer and get feedback, provide information and connect with the brand’s community through bilateral interaction on any of your ecosystem’s platforms.

3. Content marketing – Distribution

Draw up a content plan for the next day (or for the next week or month) and decide how to promote and circulate your content through different platforms and channels. Decide also what pieces you will create: press releases, videos, audio, newsletter, pictures, etc. You must also take into account the call to action linked to every piece of content you publish and how you will measure its result: what action are you expecting once the content reaches your community? Make sure that the result is in line with your objectives: subscriptions, visiting the online store, download of ebook or podcast, contact form requesting more information or a request for a quote.

4. Blogging

If you have a blog or offer news on your website, you should previously define what this section will be like as part of your content marketing strategy. At this stage you simply have to write, optimise and publish your post, news item, event or whatever it is you will be publishing. If you’re writing a post that is meant for the following day, leave it ready to be posted by scheduling it. Consider sharing it on platforms or using tools such as Buffer, Twylah or ScoopIt.

5. Planning and brainstorming

It may be interesting, even advisable, to spend up to one hour every day thinking about creative actions, contests, promotions, campaigns and other tactics that are in line with your objectives. They must add value to your community and your brand. By doing this on a daily basis you will be able to run a tight operation that works constantly.

6. Community engagement

Identify the conversations held by your community and take part in them. Share content that is valuable to them, engage with them by putting them in contact with resources, allies or people that meet their needs and interests. Do this by being one more in the conversation, not the one dominating the conversation or the flow of content.

7. Search and analysis

Monitor how your organisation performs in online conversations. In this case, intervene in the case of both negative or positive comments (acting to put a positive spin on things or, in the latter case, to reinforce such comments). Remember to watch your tone in doing so!

8. Eventualities

The chances are you’re not only in charge of the “social” side of things. You therefore need to combine all of the above with any other duties you have outside this area. Don’t worry if you can’t always follow this workflow strictly; there will always be other distractions: emails, phone calls, unexpected meetings, you co-worker’s love life, etc.

Find your own formula

The best thing about this is you don’t need to follow the precise order of tasks and responsibilities I set above. Distribute them across your day however they work best with your strategy and time. You can repeat more than one task within a day; some may take two hours, others 15 minutes. This will depend on your objectives, the time you can dedicate to online tasks or how relevant all of this is to your organisation.

Everything boils down to what you require. The idea is for you to define and structure what tasks need to be carried out. Don’t approach them all at the same time and dedicate time to each one separately. Online activity is increasingly integrated into the day-to-day running of companies, so perhaps they’re part of customer services and you need to integrate the social media workflow into your own workflow mix.

What is your workflow like? Are there any other tasks you think I left out?

Photo credit: woodlyewonderworks.

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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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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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8 Ways to Increase Engagement of Facebook Posts

Brands have always accepted Facebook as a key marketing tool to generate engagement and branding. The question is whether Facebook creates more engagement, visibility, traffic and experience than other tools. Searching for an answer to this for some time leads to understanding how the different attributes of Facebook posts have an impact on the number of “likes”, comments and “shares” that a post gets.

How to Increase the Number of Likes in Facebook Posts

Below, I identify 8 ways to increase the number of “likes” a post receives:

1. Focus. Stay up to date. I’m talking about messages that relate to holidays (Christmas), festivals, gigs, world issues, relevant events, anything related with current affairs. Perhaps they won’t be directly related to the product’s or company’s essence but they will be perceived as something more personal and, hence, better accepted (more so, even, than promotions.)

2. Express yourself through photos. Every picture tells a story. A photograph communicates something personal in a fast, easy way. You also have to make an effort to match a suitable text to the picture. Images from your company’s product catalogue generate greater engagement than other types of content.

3. Share what we love. Sharing success stories and also failures, achievements, prizes, apologies or thanks make you more human, accessible and familiar to your community. Many will also identify with the brand. When they “like” a post, they’re telling their network of friends why they identify with the brand.

4. Branding. Don’t hesitate to promote the brand and its products. When your customer visits your Facebook page, they should leave with a good impression of your brand and products/services. The public will visit the walls of the brands they’re interested in.

5. Humour rocks. Laugh and everyone will laugh with you. We all enjoy a laugh. Make your posts fun as funny posts get many “likes” and will be shared a lot. For instance, funny pictures. Being funny is an art.

6. Humanise the brand. Inject emotion to it. Brand communication starts by using the “human” side of social media. The community loves messages that turn a wall into a living object that expresses human emotions in the form of videos, images, or real-time personal statuses, for instance. Facebook is a communication platform rather than a production channel. Shar0ing posts that contain emotions helps connecting with the community. In turn, they share these emotions with their network.

7. Educate and equip. Create content that is informative. Brands sharing content that is useful to their audience get greater exposure and engagement –more “likes”–, especially in the case of information designed to improve and enrich the brand’s fans. This education could include the company’s history, the product creation process or the state of the market, for instance. When fans interact with this type of content, they’re creating educational content which is shared in their network.

8. Ask to be “liked”. Ask and you will receive. It’s simple. If you ask to be liked, like for instance Veuve Cliquot does in their posts, you’ll get more “likes”. Ask in a polite, fun way, and don’t overdo it; otherwise, the cure may be worse than the disease!

What other ways can you think of, do you know of or do you implement to increase Facebook engagement?

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How to Rock your Company or Brand with Social Media

It all has to do with rocking, the rocking you create, share and learn. So, here are some of my ideas to rock your company or brand in the Social Web:

Rocking Social Media

  • Objectives: if you don’t know where you want to go before you get started, you’re better off staying where you are.
  • Don’t run: you will fail. Your family, your boss, your colleagues, even I, know it. Fail fast, and learn what works and what doesn’t faster still.
  • Take a run-up: jot things down, work hard, don’t settle with what you’re doing. In social media you can always do more than what you’re doing. Vertigo? No, it’s a springboard!
  • Excellence in excellence: take care of every detail in your online presence: design, profile pictures, banners, bio, descriptions, titles, spelling mistakes, punctuation marks, permanent beta, elaborate communications, fast and efficient answers, taking a real interest for your people and, always, going a little bit further.
  • Listen without talking: listen to the conversations that go on in Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn updates, blogs, and forums. Show up, contribute and add to the conversation but don’t just show up and start a preaching discourse, you’ll be ignored!
  • Share even yourself: don’t speak of yourself only, we can all do that. Share whatever you think is valuable and adds to the change. Do it often and see how you start connecting with opportunities and people. The more you share, the “luckier” you’ll be. Here’s an example: Eva Collado.
  • Create change: I’m sure you have something to say to the world. When that happens, you create change. Start a blog, create a hashtag, a LinkedIn group, a Pinterest board or a blog/email in Posterous and shed some light. We’re expecting it.
  • Human is sexy: when we speak of love affairs, “opposites attract” is tantamount to saying “even if I’m not interested in what you do, we could get into bed together and see what happens.” We’re looking for people like us. Therefore, we’re looking for brands and companies like us: human, a kindred spirit, in line with us and with whom we share an interest. This is no different. Brands are increasingly human because they give off emotions, feelings, warmth. They resonate. They are increasingly human because they connect with us in different ways; they listen to us, hold conversations with us and care about us. That’s quite sexy!
  • Speak the same language: speak in a close, familiar and friendly way with those with whom you interact.
  • Always answer: maybe you’ve got enough on your plate or you’re “busy” like we all like to say, but unless you’re Lady Gaga, David Guetta or Justin Bieber, answer, we arrived at your doorstep, don’t let us down now!
  • Do something: you thought you were going to get off scot-free? Get out there and do something: contests, promotions, offers, cross campaigns with your partners/sponsors, set a calendar for publications, landing pages to measure traffic, creative campaigns to measure your reach and participation, communicating with your community one to one, open days for your fans/followers/readers or product trial to get some feedback. Anything, but do something: that is the driving force behind creating value.
  • Social CRM rocks: you can create one without having software costing 10,000€. You can start with the information you gather from your clients when you follow and monitor them, or the information you collect when you interact with them. You can bring together all this information in a spreadsheet used as a database and classify and handle it in cells with fields regarding your clients.
  • Analytics are hot: of course they are! Everyone is doing the same: publishing, sharing photos, answering and, in the best of cases, observing how the number of followers/connections/contacts/readers/fans grows, as well as embedding links and videos. So, when the analytics with results arrive, with variables and ways to get where we want to go, then yes, we get crazy hot!

The key to being brilliant is, in fact, being brilliant, not pretending to be.

Rock on.

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How to make the social web work for you

I often receive email requests with a very specific question that, nonetheless, can involve something as wide as the universe itself. Questions such as, “What can I do with my brand/company to position it on the Internet quickly?”, “How can I reach all my potential public present in the social web?” or “I need some advice to make my brand/company grow on the Internet, help me!”.

How to make the social web work for you

I’m outside social media

I don’t really care how others are using the social networks or social media. I used to care but not anymore. What I care about is discovering new paths to make the social web and Internet work in such a way that new business may be fostered, designing new digital roads beyond the social media and making a personal brand, agency or company more useful, connected and valuable. Using the social web and the Internet to develop your knowledge and expertise towards creating change, leveraging your influence towards new opportunities, strengthening processes, people and brands, building scalable ideas and launching new projects beyond the digital noughts and ones. That’s it.

How to get “this” to work

That’s what takes up my time, making sure that you get the tools, platforms, channels, strategies and tactics that form the social web working for you. This is how I do it:

  • Build your own attack. Write posts for your blog, prepare videos for YouTube, create your own social news, organise hangouts, tweet. Anything that helps you get your story across. However, make sure you stay human and interact with people rather than beating them with your message.
  • Form an ecosystem. Segment platforms and define your core value: Facebook to find people you know. Twitter for having conversations, searching and interacting and so forth in other places where you set your online presence. One use, one objective, one action, that’s enough.
  • Create your own framework. No one should trust other people’s framework or job structure. Modify them, hack them if you have to, make them work to suit your needs. Tactics, strategy, time management, work timetable, vacations: find a strcuture that works the way that you work and make it work. As Hugh McLeod use to say “ignore everybody“.
  • Learn from the outside. Extract ideas, learnings and feedback, learn to learn from the social web.
  • Negotiate your time. Use any lack of attention in your favour and create a defined workflow the allows you to structure your personal and professional tasks so that you can optimise each step of the work chain.
  • Do, make and show. Work on your project or idea, experiment, check and then share what you obtained. Seek inputs that can improve your output.
  • Burn the handbookDon’t pay too much attention to any social media preacher. For instance: if you hear that so-and-so only publishes once, try publishing twice that, then thrice that and continue trying out and experimenting, analysing where the breaking point is. Perhaps some won’t like what you do (for instance, publishing too much or placing an interstitial in your website to increase your database) but you may gain visits to your website and end up selling more.
  • Jump on the bandwagon. Take a look at what is trending in social media and jump on the bandwagon by also linking to that content. It will probably help you too. Netiquette establishes that if you find valuable content from a large brand that someone has shared, link to the person, not the brand.
  • Online reputation and blah, blah, blah! Forget online reputation and invest the hours you spend worrying about looking great in doing work that has a great result.
  • Measure whatever makes sense. Focus on metrics that measure what’s important to you; that is, your ROI. Forget the likes, followers or RT unless your job is to collect nonsensical figures regarding an overrated action. Measure the increase in orders, percentage increase in sales compared to the previous year and the one before that. Active users in your database, how many join it daily and how many unsubscribe. How many App downloads you have every week or month and the income received if it’s not a free App. How often is the content you publish shared or how many leads are you capable of taking from your social platform to your point of conversion. Whatever makes your bank account grow will make a great indicator, it’s what you should be measuring.
  • Human sells. Are you selling something? Even if your blog’s main aim is to sell, remain human, be interesting, become involved in what concerns you and add value to your audience. This isn’t the Internet we used to know. Now we have amazing tools that remind us that in order to create digital business we must start by being human. Let’s use it in a different way.

You define it

You know the best thing about it? This sleeps with you every night. It is the product of your work. The best news I’ve heard in years: Choice and not opportunity define your work…or fate!

Photo credit: Ralph S.

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13 Quick Tips To Optimise your LinkedIn Profile

1. Set a personalised URL with your name. The same name you use with other profiles: your brand.

2. Create a unique extract. Can you summarise everything into a single sentence that makes you unique and special, something that sets you apart from everyone else? I bet you can!

3. End in a clear, direct and powerful way. End each section in your profile with something that really makes an impact on the reader; we always remember what we read last better than what we read first. It is quite common to start strong and end weak. Remember, go against the current! No one else does.

4. Achievements and tasks. One of the best profiles I’ve read lately has been the one set up by Víctor Ronco. His way of listing his achievements and the tasks he was in charge of is sensational. Of course, you do need to be a doer and a tryer for that!

5. Media. You can create a media section showing all your appearances in the media in a Presentation/PDF (slideshare plugin).

6. Skills and expertise. Don’t mention your management, business and consulting skills only. Include also something more personal: your human skills, abilities and characteristics… as it happens, this side of things is mainly what’s missing in our environment right now and rarities have an added value. Think about what you’re like as a human being, that’s the key!

7. Interests are key words through which you may be found. Catch the drift?

8. A blog makes your profile much more attractive and powerful.

9. Recommendations. Ask for recommendations from people who may have something interesting to say about you which is valuable.

10. Have you taken any courses that expand, improve and prove what you can do? Include them!

11. Move forward! This involves taking part in groups, setting up your own blog –did I mention that earlier?- and reviewing your profile for 10 minutes every week to streamline it.

12. Show what else you do. Do you have online presentations? Are you showing them?

13. Header. The header is the best opportunity available to position yourself. There are already too many experts in social media, senior community managers and marketing directors. If you’re doing what everyone else does, in what way are you standing out for me?

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How to Integrate the Social Web into your Business

human mediaPerhaps you don’t know where to start, that’s ok. Every project, person or business requires something unique, a special treat, it’s a new adventure.

On the other hand, perhaps you are tired of listening terms such as social media, new media, human media or social business, social CRM and so on. I believe that it can be annoying when people talk too much about these “buzzwords,” let alone not showing real results or even giving a starting point. Please, we need something actionable and applicable from you, please.

Here you have my “no problemo” approach, I would like to provide you with some movements that may help in your path towards building an online presence. Find here some of the essential points for implementing the social web, social media and so, new media into your business.

How to implement the Social Web into your business

- Strategic formulation: design, structure, integration, implementation and the make-of of a strategy based on general and specific goals. Think about how this fits into the business model, it should be integrated within the overall business strategy and aligned with the offline marketing and communication. Also consider the role that SEO, digital marketing, creativity, web development, APPs and mobile marketing are playing.

– Training and guidance: A must for most of the group, this is something complicated because many brands either allocate one / two people to work on it or go for the outsourcing model. As we have seen many times and you probably know, Social Media is not an isolated case, neither will it do the magic. The real potential lies in integrating people and processes and making them work. You should be looking for interdepartmental work, which means involving all company areas in the online interaction. Make use of the training process to harness that opportunity and inspire those people.

Do not sell complicated to people who come to you to buy simple. Once you have opened their minds and hearts, it is the right time for using the the tools, platforms, APPs, channels and media more effectively, so they’ll have the tools to reach their goals - theirs, not yours.

- Social processes: interactive works, social media customer care, online-emotional touchpoints, community funnel, best practices handbooks (internal and external) and cross media. Basically, offline-online job transformation, taking departments and processes to the social web and developing extended functions.

- Social Media guidance, creation, distribution and leadership: choose someone who is close and in constant contact with your business. They are the ones who should create, distribute, exchange and share social objects: pictures, videos, posts, podcasts, etc. Don’t manage, but lead.

– Development, optimization and understanding of the Social Web Ecosystem: first select the tools, channels, APPs, mediums and platforms. Then develop a highly online-oriented strategy supported by let’s say, two main goals based on the intended typology, quirks and peculiarities. Finally allocate resources and schedule each of them. The result: you have already designed a customized online ecosystem for your business. The main idea is that it allows you to see the big picture of your online strategy.

- Community engagement: lead, build interactive bridges between brands and people, respond, redistribute and filter content, connect and interact with your audience. Say what you are going to do, how, where and with whom.

- Actions: ideas, ideas, ideas, ideas and more ideas. You have only one big commitment, being accountable for the brilliance, you are responsible for the online campaigns and social media actions that will impact your audience, but most importantly, it should be designed to reach your goals: monetization, branding, visibility, virality, direct sales, traffic, etc,

- Reputation, tracking and monitoring: online branding, naming, digital corporate identity, listening techniques (opportunities and threats). Sending reports about what is said about the brand within the online landscape. Furthermore, taking care of the brand, its reputation and carry on with a qualitative and quantitative brand analysis. What happens in our brand atmosphere is really useful in order to get the word out .

- Monetization: set up the techniques and methods which you would help you obtain the expected ROI. You are waiting to get something in return, aren’t you?

Is there any other advice that you would add about the implementation of new media in your business? What is your take on this?

Photo credit: conexus marketing.

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