July 27, 2015

Does your small business or startup qualify for Wikipedia?

Wikipedia-and-Google-Knowledge-Graph

Target audience: Small businesses, startups, marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

By Mike Wood

mike-woodWikipedia is the seventh most visited website in the world. Since its inception, companies have been using it as a way to establish their brands. Wikipedia can be a great way to promote your business, but you can’t just go in and create a promotional entry — you have to follow the rules.

For companies such as General Motors, Citibank and Facebook, there’s no question that they qualify for an entry in Wikipedia. The tough part comes when evaluating if a small business or startup qualifies for a Wikipedia page. Continue reading

July 20, 2015

7 rules of social media marketing

Daltons-in-Iran
Photo by Hamed Saber on Flickr (Creative Commons BY)    

 
Rule 7: Figure out what images resonate with your audience and share news and articles that increase awareness.

Post by Megan Totka
ChamberofCommerce.com

MeganTotkaIt seems like every small business understands the power of social media marketing – 99 percent of marketers feel social media is a crucial part of their communication campaigns according to a recent report by Regalix. In order to maximize your social media marketing campaign, it’s essential that you grasp its fundamentals.

Take a look at these seven rules that allow you to best serve your customers and develop your brand.

Home in on your area of expertise

1It’s smarter to go ahead and focus on your area of expertise instead of attempting to unsuccessfully be a jack-of-all-trades. Sometimes it’s tricky to find ideas to keep your social media fresh – ideas for content don’t always appear out of thin air. However, instead of caving and falling victim to a strategy that attempts to know everything about everything, build a strong brand though a highly specified social media and content marketing strategy. Continue reading

July 13, 2015

5 tools to amplify your social campaigns

youths

Check out SOCi, GappleAMP, SocialOomph, Buffer & Hootsuite

Target audience: Marketing professionals, brand managers, SEO specialists, businesses, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

Chris AbrahamIam surprised how much of a one-man band I have become through social media thanks to a little help from my friends: free and low-cost tools.

Here are the top social media applications I use in order to help lead my clients and my own brand through all the background noise and into the spotlight.

SOCi

soci1It’s no longer OK to just drop links into your social media stream from Mashable or the Huffington Post. In a world in which everyone is dropping the same generalist links into their feed, curation needs to change its focus from social sharing (I’m smart because what I read is smart) to social engagement (I’m smart because I know what you wants to read and can provide it). Social sharing is no longer just about dropping links in the same way that being a DJ is no longer just about dropping tracks, it’s about feeling the crowd and stoking them up into a dance frenzy. What is it called when you stoke your followers into a dance frenzy? Engagement!
Continue reading

June 30, 2015

Social media metrics for small businesses: 4 tools

Are Oktopost, Cyfe, Klout & Hootsuite in your arsenal?

Post by Adi Englander

Adi EnglanderOne of the biggest challenges that small businesses face with social media is cutting through the bewildering fog of metrics to focus on what truly matters.

Why is this such a big challenge?

Because according to Manta, 60% of businesses reported that they didn’t gain any benefit from social media engagement.

As David Spark pointed out in the aptly named article “Are you using social media to serve your needs?”: “Every time you delve into a new social media program, ask yourself what purpose it fills for you personally or professionally.”

The antidote is to “focus entirely on what you’re trying to accomplish with your social media program or campaign and then identify the Key Performance Indicators that will tell you, over time, whether you’re getting there.” Continue reading

June 23, 2015

The recipe for success that earned Lynda.com a $1.5 billion payday

Lynda Weinman
Lynda Weinman at the Traction conference in Vancouver (Photo by JD Lasica).

This is the second of a two-part series on the Traction conference. Also see:
• Part 1: Traction: How to spur growth for your startup

Target audience: Startup teams, entrepreneurs, small businesses, marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

JD LasicaYesterday I highlighted some takeaways from the cool new Traction conference that debuted last Wednesday and Thursday in Vancouver. The event drew roughly 800 entrepreneurs, startup team members, marketers and angel investors.

One of the inspiring keynotes of the event came from Lynda Weinman, founder of Lynda.com, which LinkedIn purchased for $1.5 billion in April. (She mentioned that she’ll be leaving LinkedIn soon to pursue another entrepreneurial opportunity.)

Lynda recounted her journey from running in-person computer training courses to the dotcom crash of 2000-2001, which forced the company to pivot to online tutorials. That early mover advantage gave Lynda.com the ability to set the pace for all the e-learning sites that followed. Continue reading

June 22, 2015

Traction: How to spur growth for your startup

traction-audience
Attendees at last week’s Traction conference in Vancouver (Photo by JD Lasica).

This is the first of a two-part series on the Traction conference.

Target audience: Startup teams, entrepreneurs, small businesses, marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

JD LasicaI‘m just back from one of the best inaugural tech events on the West Coast: the two-day Traction conference, which drew some 800 entrepreneurs, startup team members, marketers and angels to Vancouver last week.

Speakers included marketing superstar Neil Patel, Lynda Weinman (whose Lynda.com was purchased by LinkedIn for $1.5 billion), Ryan Holmes, CEO of Hootsuite, Marketo CEO Phil Fernandez, SurveyMonkey president Selina Tobaccowala, Jeff Lawson, CEO of Twilio, and a host of others.

Here’s my Flickr album of 23 photos taken at the conference.

Highlights of the Traction conference

I’ve been on Twitter for eight years, but I’m a bit old-fashioned in that I think a blog post summary will offer more long-term value than thousands of uncontextualized tweets, so here are some of the highlights I gleaned while attending the conference as both an entrepreneur and journalist:

• “In a world where 1,200 startups are launching every year, the hard thing is no longer, Can you build a product as a startup? The hard part is, Can you get traction? … Traction trumps everything.” — Justin Mares, co-author, “Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers.” Continue reading