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Tell Your Story By Telling Stories I really enjoyed this section of the 5 steps for social media successes by Jeff Bullas about telling your story by telling stories: Stories resonate and help us relate to others. We remember vivid details...

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Are you giving reporters what they want? Ragan Comunications had an interesting post highlighting a recent survey providing some numbers to back up the feeling that reporters want more than just a press release when being pitched a story by your...

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Using Images in Email Marketing Images have the power to tell a story that words cannot begin to convey. ClickZ has begun a series examining consumer email behavior and in this installment, they look at utilizing images in your email...

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Becoming Trusted and Credible Through Blogging In 2005, I helped found BlueJersey.com, a progressive political blog covering New Jersey politics. Frankly, my family supported me but didn't really understand what I was doing or why I was blogging.  They...

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Taking Social Media From Talk To Action The Harvard Business Review is out with a report called "The New Conversation: Taking Social Media From Talk To Action" that is worth a read talking about the growth of social media usage among companies: The...

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Becoming Trusted and Credible Through Blogging

Category : Facebook, Social Media, Twitter, blogs

In 2005, I helped found BlueJersey.com, a progressive political blog covering New Jersey politics. Frankly, my family supported me but didn’t really understand what I was doing or why I was blogging.  They thought I was giving away my writing and ideas for free. I always explained how I believed it would demonstrate my knowledge, help legitimize me and ultimately be beneficial. With the rise of Twitter and Facebook, I began to help publicize my writing to larger audiences and still my family questioned. They didn’t doubt me, but still couldn’t see the method to my madness.

Slowly, they began to see the light as I began speaking about social media, appearing in and on traditional media because of my work with new media, was hired for jobs because of my new media knowledge and then was named by the Washington Post’s Chris Cilizza as one of the best NJ political tweeters. I had been a paid political operative for years, however it was writing for free by blogging that truly raised my profile to the point where I became the communications director for the New Jersey Democratic State Committee.

Along the same lines of my story, Jeff Bullas looked at how blogging can make you credible and offered this assessment:

Blogging doesn’t make you an expert but just through the sheer committment, research involved and the passion required to write often and regularly, that the expert label perceived or real starts to  shine through. It is said that to become an expert it takes 10,00o hours of practice to be at the top of your game, whether you be a musician or surgeon.   Blogging gets you noticed  and positions you as a thought leader and consequently as potential customers read your blog posts and observe your committment and passion they brand you as an expert. The next logical step is that they trust you and want to buy from you.

I only wish I could have explained it that well when my family questioned. Blogging got me noticed and because I earned people’s trust, I was considered credible. Trust is essential to communicating because lack of trust leads to immediate questions of credibility and accuracy. I utilized my blogging to gain this trust and credibility, making contacts with traditional media to improve the work I was able to do. I never claimed to be a reporter, in fact constantly credited reporters and talked about how I wouldn’t be able to blog well without them. But I did manage to make myself a credible source of information about news and politics in New Jersey by simply composing my thoughts in the form of blog posts and then distributing them on social media platforms. Anybody can do it, you just have to take the time and make the investment.

Taking Social Media From Talk To Action

Category : Facebook, Social Media, Twitter, advertising, business, marketing

The Harvard Business Review is out with a report called “The New Conversation: Taking Social Media From Talk To Action” that is worth a read talking about the growth of social media usage among companies:

The exponential growth of social media, from blogs, Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and YouTube, offers organizations the chance to join a conversation with millions of customers around the globe every day.
This promise is why nearly two-thirds of the 2,100 companies who participated in a recent survey by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services said they are either currently using social media channels or have social media plans in the works. But many still say social media is an experiment, as they try to understand how to best use the different channels, gauge their effectiveness, and integrate social media into their strategy.
But when they say experimenting, it really sounds like feeling around blindly hoping to find something according to some of the results:
  • Three-quarters (75%) of the companies in the survey said they did not  know where their most valuable customers were talking about them.
  • Nearly one-third (31%) do not measure effectiveness of social media.
  • Less than one-quarter (23%) are using social media analytic tools.
  • A fraction (7%) of participating companies are able to integrate social media into their marketing activities.

These should all be huge red flags in any experiment as they represent numerous missed opportunities to capitalize on their efforts in the future.  Follow me below the fold for more. Contunue Reading

Social Habit 2011 shows 52% have more than 1 Social Media Profile

Category : Facebook, LinkedIn, Social Media, Twitter, Youtube, mobile

Edison Research released their 2011 Social Habit study, looking at the usage of Facebook, Twitter, mobil social usage and location based services. Here are some highlights:

Social Media now reaches the majority of Americans 12+, with 52% having a profile on one or more social networks.

This figure is driven largely by Facebook, which is now used by over half (51%) of Americans 12+.

Twitter is as familiar to Americans as Facebook (with 92% and 93% familiarity, respectively); however, Twitter usage stands at 8% of Americans 12+.

Approximately 46 million Americans 12+ now check their social media sites and services several times every day.

Much of this frequent usage is driven by mobile access. 56% of frequent social network users own smartphones, and 64% of frequent social networkers have used a mobile phone to update their status on one or more social networks.

Location-based sites and services (such as Foursquare and Facebook Places) are familiar to 30% of Americans 12+, and used by 4% of Americans 12+.

One in four social network users knowingly follow brands, products or services on social networks. For those who use these sites and services several times per day, this figure increases to 43%.

You can see the full study below, but it’s clear there is an audience using social media that your business or organization should be communicating with.

View more presentations from webby2001

What will the NHL/NBC Sports Social Media Integration Experiment reveal?

Category : Facebook, Social Media, Twitter, traditional media

The NHL and NBC Sports have announced that they are going to try and further engage their viewers by integrating social media into the TV broadcast of their 2011 Winter Classic hockey game between the Penguins and the Capitals. We get the news from MediaPost.com:

“We’re running the social and broadcast integration to test the effectiveness and examine the data,” DiLorenzo says. “It should grow our Facebook Fan base, because people must ‘like’ the page to play. It also will build a window into the event for those who may not be in front of the television.”

I’ll be interested to see whether they release any analysis of what the data shows and how effective the campaign really is:

“Aside from looking at how people interact in social communities, this campaign will determine how to leverage fans to influence connections from offline to television to Facebook or Twitter,” says Eric Vieira, associate director at Rocket XL.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so if this endeavor is successful, we should all get ready for efforts like this in other sports and shows. It seems like a logical next step in integration, but making sure businesses are able to see the benefit to the bottom line will certainly determine the true impact of this latest experiment.

52 Facts about social media including 77% of internet users read blogs and a new member joins Linkedin every second

Category : Facebook, LinkedIn, Social Media, Twitter, Uncategorized, Video, Youtube, blogs

We repeatedly make the point here at Medium messaging about the potential reach of the internet and social media. Danny brown shares with us 52 facts about Social Media to help reinforce the point:

So, here are ten facts about the five most well-known social media outlets – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and blogging – with two more bonus facts thrown in just for fun. (And to get to the figure of a fact a week for a year).

Some of the statistics are eye opening. If you’re not blogging, you are missing out on and opportunity to be seen by 3/4 of the audience on the internet:

77% of Internet users read blogs.

We’ve talked about the audience of you tube and while 2 billion viewers per day is nothing to overlook, check out this comparison for some context:

YouTube uses the same amount of bandwidth as the entire Internet used in 2000.

Linkedin’s audience continues to grow as now there are 70 million users worldwide and they receive 12 million unique visitors per day:

A new member joins LinkedIn every second

While much of the attention focuses on the growth of twitter in terms of numbers, which is certainly impressive, the amount of people using twitter as a search tool holds even more potential:

There are more than 600 million searches on Twitter every day.

These numbers will only continue to grow as social media saturates society itself. If you’re not getting in on it yet, you will be eventually.  Years ago, you made sure that your business or personal brand was listed in the Yellow pages, because that’s where people went for their information when they needed help. In coming years, it will be what’s your blog, website and social media accounts.

Twitter as a micro-journalism platform

Category : Social Media, Twitter, blogs, internet, journalism, traditional media

I was reading a really interesting story titled over at arkarthik.com titled, How Twitter is turning Journalism on its head:

Thanks to it’s remarkably easy way of posting tweets (you don’t even need to be at your computer, mobile/cell phone is enough), open conversation model, brilliant in-built search engine and to the new “Trending Topics” algorithm which finds topics that are right away popular, rather than outdated (at times, even some nonsense)  topics, to help people discover the “most breaking” news stories from across the world. Apparently, journalists “follow” Twitter too and it assists them to see new published information very quickly and to publish them even more quickly: to a certain extent, it favors their reactivity in front of events.

Check out this graph comparing the reach of journalism before and after Twitter:

Before Twitter

After Twitter

Here is the conclusion they reach:

Twitter can”t be titled “Social Network” anymore, it’s more of a “Social Media/Social Web” that connecting 100+ million users worldwide. As more ace news organizations (CNN, BBC, Reuters.. to name a few) began to utilize Twitter to its entirety, I am sure – it won’t be a “Micro-blogging platform” anymore. It will be a pioneer of the future “Micro-journalism platform.”

By the way, I am not stating that the traditional news media/journalism became obsolete. It is there and always will be. Good thing is that, most News organizations are realized the power of “Twitter” reach and adopting it as a nice distribution/circulation tool in this fast paced World. That’s all!

Over in the UK, the Guardian has already started to try and change the traditional thinking with their “Open Platform” initiative. Rather than putting their news behind a pay wall, they are capitalizing on the tools for expanded distribution and reach of their content:

The paper has just introduced a free story syndication tool.

The tool is part of the paper’s “Open Platform” initiative, and what it does is pretty amazing: If you’re a publisher of a blog that uses WordPress, you can now re-post Guardian articles directly on your blog. The Guardian is essentially giving away its online news content. For free!

There are some conditions, of course: You have to publish the article in full. You also mustn’t remove or alter any “text, links or images,” so that you preserve the original article with all of its Guardian-sourced editorial goodness. You have to register to get an access code to let you re-publish content, but there’s no fee involved. The articles come with performance tracking code built-in, which you also mustn’t tamper with, but for the privilege of reproducing the content for free this isn’t too much of a price.

This is a brilliant idea as their content can reach a much larger audience with no extra resources expended on their end. They let technology and their readers take the wheel. Hopefully the news media continues to embrace twitter and other forms of new media, but they truly need to engage. While they’re focusing on expanding their audience and readership, those additional readers can help enhance the coverage they provide. New media can provide extra eyes and a direct method to communicate the information to the traditional media, at a time that their resources are already stretched thin and cuts have been made.

Twitter breaks records with the World Cup

Category : Social Media, Twitter

If you think Twitter has had service problems lately, which they’ve acknowledged and said they are trying to fix to prevent outages, this probably contributed to the problem. During the NBA Finals, twitter set their new tweets per day record, which didn’t last very long:

That record was shattered yesterday as Twitter users published 3,283 tweets per second at the close of Japan’s victory over Denwark in the World Cup.These new numbers come directly from Twitter. You may recall that the previous record of 3,085 tweets per second came at the close of the Los Angeles Lakers’ victory over the Boston Celtics on June 17.

Both of these recent records are staggering given that Twitter — during normal daily activity — averages roughly 750 tweets per second. The Japan-Demark World Cup figure means that activity swelled 438% above average, which helps to put recent service issues into perspective.

It will be interesting to see how Twitter holds up as the World Cup comes to a close. If they continue to have problems, we’ll have to see if that impacts how traditional Twitter users react and if they look to take their conversations to another medium that is more stable. If they fix their problems, this may strengthen the foundation on which Twitter can continue to build.