5/15/2014

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6/22/2012

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12/15/2011

Social Media Mind Control – Say What?

Social Media Mind Control � Say What?  阅读原文»

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As you sit there, slogging away at the social networks, has something titilated your brain? Have your senses been “tweaked” alerting you to some unseen element? You may be an unwitting victim of social media ruining your mind.

That’s right, you read correctly, recent studies may have revealed links tying social media to all manner of ills. Not only could your ability to multitask and your focus be adversely affected by your incessant networking, so might other cognitive functions. As the infographic from Assisted Living Today below shows, science may have once again found fodder for hazard warnings and labels, this time maybe on Facebook!

How Social Media is Ruining Our Minds Infographic

Infographic by Assisted Living Today � Assisted Living Facilities

Facebook, Twitter and now Google Plus, social media has supplanted blogging as the most popular outreach and expressive tool, at least for many. Social media participation, as the graphic tries to illustrate, my in fact dull the senses dramatically. But, is social media really running our minds? More data will be needed there, but until then perhaps your personal blog and an IM can be a preventative?


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10/12/2011

How Timing a Blog Post Can Increase Your Exposure

How Timing a Blog Post Can Increase Your Exposure  阅读原文»

Have you read "How To Be a Rockstar WordPress Designer" yet?

Timing a blog postIs timing all that important in the world of online marketing where information flows freely twenty four hours a day, seven days a week?

Some bloggers and users of social media are satisfied to hammer out a post or send a tweet whenever they can. Others stay up late editing the next day's blog post and setting it to auto-post at 4 AM. Is there really any advantage?

In a word, yes. In two words: definitely maybe.

Online marketers and community managers want to know one simple thing: when can they put their information, products, and special offers in front of the greatest number of people at one time. By learning about the timing of blog posts and social media updates, they'll be able to maximize their exposure relative to the time they invest and even capture audiences that online marketers have neglected.

When to Use Social Media

Many businesses focus their blog posts and social media efforts on the work week, assuming that their audiences are most attentive during week days. However, consider this statistic from a 2009 Wired Magazine survey: 54% of companies block Facebook and Twitter. That means a ton of readers will be looking for something to read in the evenings and on the weekend. With that in mind, let's look at some advice on when to use social media and to post blog content.

Two years of researchby Dan Zarella of the marketing firm Hubspot found that the morning isn’t necessarily the best time to use social media.

  • All Social Media: Interaction levels remain fairly steady on the weekends in comparison to the week.
  • Twitter: Click-through rates for links shared are highest between 11 am and 5 pm EST.
  • Twitter: The most retweets occur between 2 pm and 5 pm. In order to monitor the effectiveness of your retweets, check out the website Tweet When.
  • Facebook: Linking to your blog or website more than once a day will not bring significant benefits. In fact, posting too frequently on Facebook will back-fire.
  • Facebook: Weekends and off-peak times are also effective for click-throughs since there are fewer links shared and many readers are still looking for good content in their off hours.
  • E-mail Campaigns: The highest open and click-through rates happen on Saturday mornings. If you send an e-mail newsletter or a digest of your blog posts, schedule it for 4 or 5 am on Saturday. Publishing professionals Jane Friedmanand Michael Hyattsend their newsletters at that time and offer many tips valuable tips to her readers.

Whatever you do, you need to test the response of readers to your blog posts and social media updates. Different industries and users may respond in their own ways. For example, if you're blogging in order to receive links from experts, Zarella recommends aiming for early in the morning.

One of the most important things to keep in mind for blogs targeting readers in the United States, the majority of the population is located on the East Coast.

If you want to dramatically increase your page views, you need to also focus on your post frequency. However, if you can't keep up with one, two, or three posts a day, post timing will become far more important. In addition, entrepreneur and blogger Tim Ferris suggeststhat a lousy blog post can be far more harmful to your influence than no blog post.

Darren Rowse of ProBlogger wroteback in 2008 that his weekend posts are typically lost in the shuffle compared to weekday posts. When he hosted Daniel Zarella to share his findingsabout blog viewing trends, his findings continued to hold true. Weekday mornings EST are when blogs have the most readers.

This means that marketers can still reach a lot of readers on social networks on the weekends and in the afternoons. However, when it comes to attracting links and more blog readers, the majority of readers are looking for content on week day mornings. Though the audience on weekends may be smaller for a blog post, social media tools and a lack of competition and a companion e-mail campaign may make weekends a highly effective time to find readers and customers.

About the Author

This guest post is written by Lior Levine, a marketing consultant for a web hosting company that lists the best web hosting companies online. Lior also consults for the MA in political science international program at the Tel Aviv University.


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7/05/2011

Custom WordPress Design vs. WordPress Templates

Custom WordPress Design vs. WordPress Templates  阅读原文»

Looking for really affordable premium WordPress themes?

Custom WordPress design solutions provide multiple advantages over the pre-designed WordPress templates available out there today. The customization and other capabilities created through the use of customized WordPress design really do make a difference.

A WordPress template that is pre-designed can serve as a bridge in the beginning stages. But in working with a template, the design and branding options often times become a limiting factor. As the brand begins to explore its own identity, developing a strong awareness for the type of message it wants to present, the custom WordPress solution becomes more of a necessity. It's difficult to achieve the level of branding desired through the use of a standardized template. The template can only do so much. When a company decides ultimately on how the brand is to be represented, the custom WordPress option becomes the best option.

The template also presents a challenge for version upgrades. It is common for individuals to download a template from a site that is quite close to becoming obsolete. Because the WordPress platform continues to change and update regularly, the use of the template can present a problem for a blog. When a version of WordPress issues an upgrade, the template in use must work in harmony with the newest version of WordPress. If this does not happen, issues with the plug-ins and loading errors can occur. This could diminish the user experience, so it is best to get a customized template from a resource that can be adapted and modified as needed to perform consistently between the different types of upgrades.

Impressive templates appealing to the eye may not function well in different browsers. Because users surf the internet with a variety of different types of browsers, the template must perform consistently. In working with a template, some may find that it works with one particular browser best. In using the pre-made design, one may have to encourage the users to view the site through a particular browser. Individuals who prefer viewing certain websites through a particular browser could decide to go to a similar site without such restrictions in place. When the custom design services are used, the expert tests to make sure that the templates work across all browsers in a number of settings.

There are also plug-in considerations worth exploring. Many of the plug-ins provided through WordPress are made to work specifically with certain types of templates. Some of the plug-ins are upgraded frequently while others are not. This presents a problem for those working with templates. Because the templates aren't maintained or tested often enough beyond the initial version, an individual may find it impossible to use the plug-ins that they want. One of the best ways to ensure that all of the preferred plug-ins are available to the user is to work with a custom designer. This means that the plug-ins selected aren't dictated by the template itself, but rather the individual's preference.

Advantages of working with a custom design include improved branding and functionality which become paramount to a business trying to take things to the next level. More latitude, more flexibility and more options are available to the person utilizing the custom template. The user experience is improved, and the performance is guaranteed with each subsequent upgrade.

About the Author

This is a gues post by Rodney Warner – A full time SEO & Denver WordPress Designer.


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7/04/2011

How to Choose a Blog Topic

How to Choose a Blog Topic  阅读原文»

With the StudioPress WordPress themes you can really take your blog to a higher level!

Choosing a blog topic is the most important factor in having a successful, well-read blog post that attracts comments and attention. Here is how to choose a topic for your blog post.

The most basic way to choose a blog topic is to look for an attention-grabbing story in the news. This can then be used as part of the blog post and title. The title is the first thing that people read, and it’s the most important factor. As long as you grab their attention you will convince them to continue reading. Choosing a topic that is controversial will also help you to create a good blog post, as people love to read about controversy.

Create an angle on a popular blog topic. In order to do this, look for those topics in your marketplace that always get lots of comments and attract the attention of many blog owners in your market. You should then use the same broad theme but create an angle, in order to make it original. This is a very simple way to choose a blog topic and will ensure you have a market for your blog post.

Another solid approach to choosing a blog topic is to make it personal. People love to read about the lives of others, and are always interested if you reveal something about yourself. However, ensure that the blog topic is also related to the market and gives them information that can be put to use. You could offer a story of how you used a certain technique in order to improve your skills in something. Make it personal, reveal an unknown truth and then provide a solution.

If your market is one that enjoys humor then you can reveal a joke as part of the blog post. This will not work in all markets, but it is an effective method to choose a blog topic. The idea is to link something that your readers are interested in to a joke that they will enjoy. This has been done with great success and can be used to connect to your subscribers and readers.

One of the most popular blog topics is to make a list of seven secrets or tips. This is done every day and still works to generate attention and attract a lot of readers. When you create a blog post around seven tips, you will almost be guaranteed to have readers, comments and increased traffic.

Using the methods above to choose the topic for your blog post will make the process much easier and will ensure more readers to click and read your content.

About the Author

Pat Lindle is an avid writer and blogger for his metal deck / steel deck company in Phoenix AZ. When not writing and blogging about his passions, Pat enjoys scuba diving, mountain climbing, and vacationing with his family.


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6/20/2011

Use a Blog to Build Your Brand

Use a Blog to Build Your Brand  阅读原文»

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Brand building is the only route to business success in the present global market scenario. Sales alone cannot make a business successful since they do not increase until the brand becomes a forceful tool that will launch the business into the big league. Brand building is a tough task needing an investment of a lot of time and money, and every step needs to be done right. Even then, something may hold back the branding initiative.

In such a scenario blogging may prove to be savior in helping in the branding exercise and making it successful. Blogging can help in various ways, some of which are discussed below:

  • Build an online image through blogs- Part of the branding initiative includes the addition of a jingle or a catch line that is so catchy that it stays in consumers' minds. This is often to such an extent that the very mention of the brand first brings a very distinct image of the brand and then anything else. This has been termed as creation of a "franchise" in the mind by experts, and companies spend billions to create this mind franchising exercise. One last effort can be to use blogging for increasing the branding endeavors, which will definitely help in creating an online presence for the brand and the products associated with it. Also, blogs are an open, free for all board where your brand stories can be narrated time and again, new thoughts added, and updates that help to keep the reading public in the loop. A blog is like a guided tour that continues over time. A personal perspective for a brand is possible only through blogs, and it makes people warm up to it.
  • Blogs for initiating conversations- Blogs need not be a one way communication channel. It is a great way to initiate a conversation with consumers, get their views, feedback and recommendations. Often it is the end user who is able to point out flaws and drawbacks that can be rectified to improve the image of the brand and the products attached to it. Personal interaction helps to develop a personal rapport and with it comes faith and trust in the people behind the brand. A personal angle to a strictly professional or business relationship only adds to the advantages without any negative effects.
  • Blogging helps in marketing by word-of-mouth- Blogs have a double effect. Besides opening a communication channel between brand owners and brand users, it also helps to create a network involving people connected to users, since all people talk to each other about good products and services. This can easily have a viral effect, since path breaking innovations will reach all the networks of the people you interact or communicate with. This word of mouth marketing is perhaps the best marketing tool there can be.
  • Using connections for brand building- Blogging helps to build connections and these connections pay off in promoting brands. Blogging makes it easy to become powerful through knowledge and expertise in your field, and sharing this with others makes them see the extent of your knowledge. Once the target audience realizes this, they begin to accept your influence and warm up to the brand you promote. Connections are easy to make through this knowledge route. Being honest, letting your true self come out in your blogs, adds life to a few lines and the reading public loves that. Blogs thus become a perfect medium to showcase honesty, sincerity and expertise in your field, without any need for rhetoric or flowery writing styles. Connections will then naturally follow.
  • Create communities on social networks through blogs- the impact of blogs can be extended to social networks like Facebook and Twitter as well. With shared interests the viral effect of a blog can do wonders for the brand a sword spreads, and so does the name and fame. Additional layers can be created through message boards, review sections, customer profiles and so on to form a whole community for a brand. This is assisted by social network platforms like Ning, CrowdVine and KickApps, which serve precisely this purpose.
  • Using Cost effective brand building exercises- Brand building can be an expensive exercise and companies that have no dearth of resources go all out to spend on brand initiatives. However, this is neither warranted nor a necessary rule of thumb. Brands can be built on shoe string budgets, with little spending or none at all, as is the case with blogging. Many blog platform come free of cost and knowledge of blogging can improve over time to yield the best results.
  • Partnerships help in reinforcing brands- Modern brands are based on the concept of distributed power. Brands are less an in-house brand expert's forte and more can be gauged from the interactive consumer platforms where a true, unbiased picture emerges. Using these inputs to restructure and improve the brand and its image subsequently, are the way smart companies work. Partnership with meaningful participants helps. Blogging is one effective way to initiate partnerships that will help the brand.

According to Brian Solis, a famous media expert and business blogger, a humane blog with genuine and helpful advice combined with the ability to cultivate relationships and sustain them helps to form good connections, improve customer service, revise perceptions and improve the reach, resonance and loyalty of the brand in question.

About the Author

This is a guest post by Neil Jones, who Specializes in launching ecommerce sites, he is currently plying his trade as head of marketing for eMobileScan. With 18 websites based all around Europe they are on course to be one of Europe’s largest online retailers of Industrial handheld computers and label printers like the Motorola MC75 terminal or the Datalogic Memor. Neil has been an online marketer for the past 6 years and in that time he has owned and run a range of sites all built around the ecommerce platform.


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