July 25, 2014

From telephone party lines to social media  

Phone-evolve

Photo credit: CC-BY, weelakeo, Flickr

The way we communicate is in transition

Target audience: Marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, analysts, brand managers, businesses, educators, journalists.

Ayelet NoffThere was a time when social media meant a telephone party line. Phones have come a long way since then, especially the introduction of hand-held cellular phones that could be carried in your pocket or purse. Nevertheless, for the most part, the telephone has remained a one-to-one communications device.

That might have been the end of the story – until the Internet and then social media emerged. Over the past 10 years, we’ve all been caught up in the fun and usefulness of being able to share and exchange ideas and information across the globe through social media. Not surprisingly, as our mobile phones got smart, we found ways to bring apps and tools from our computers into them, allowing today’s phones to act as conduits to the mushrooming social world.

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July 23, 2014

Why Google Plus is more like a forum than a social network

Five-things-Google-Plus-changed-in-our-world
A Google+ affirmation graphic.

Tips on what works and doesn’t work on G+

This is the second of a three-part series on Google Plus. Also see:
Hey Google! Here’s why Google+ is still a ghost town
Why Google Plus is the antisocial network

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

Chris AbrahamIt occurred to me, after spending a week deep-diving into Google+, that Plus is not a social network — or even a social layer. It’s a global reboot of the message board.

If you want to succeed, you need to forget about your friends and your family. Leave them behind. There are cooler, smarter, funnier people on Google+ than we have in our own lives now. Continue reading

July 21, 2014

Amp up your Facebook page and generate more leads with a contact form

contact-form
Contact forms are among the most powerful – and most underutilized – apps for Facebook. From the opening page of PageYourself.com.

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

Post by Andrew Lisa

Andrew-LisaIn the never-ending hunt to make my Facebook page stronger than the day before, I’ve found that one of the most powerful add-ons is also one of the most underutilized: contact forms. Facebook is still far and away the most widely used social media marketing site, and a contact form is a robust addition that makes social marketing on Facebook even friendlier to my friends list.

Contact forms for conversions and sales

As discussed in “Make Your Facebook Page Work Harder with a Contact Form,” leads can be converted into actual, real-world sales and repeat business with a well-placed, well-utilized contact form. Getting a contact form on my page was easy, but making it work for my business took a little work. Continue reading

July 16, 2014

Why smart TVs may be the future of home entertainment

Photo credit: CC-BY lac-bac, Flickr

Photo credit: CC-BY lac-bac, Flickr

The future of TV is a smart, personal experience

Ayelet NoffPeople are always saying things like, ‘‘Oh, I never watch TV’’ and ‘‘I don’t even own a television,’’ which is perfectly fine until you hear them discussing the latest episode of ‘‘Game of Thrones’’ or ‘‘The Big Bang Theory.’’

So, if they don’t have a TV, how exactly are they watching their favorite news, sports, sitcoms, dramas, movies, and so on?

While they may not be watching their TV programs on an actual television set, the vast majority still manage to keep up with their favorite shows by watching them on a computer, cellular phone, tablet or other electronic device. Of course, if you do, it’s ridiculous to claim that you don’t watch TV at all. If you watch a program that is or was televised, you are watching TV, whether you are technically sitting in front of real television or not. Continue reading

July 14, 2014

Hey Google! Here’s why Google+ is still a ghost town

ghost-town
The Cerro Gordo ghost town (CC BY photo by Cynthinee on Flickr)

It’s time for Mountain View to listen up & get over their control freakery

This is the first of a three-part series on Google Plus. Also see:
Why Google Plus is more like a forum than a social network
Why Google Plus is the antisocial network

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

Chris AbrahamIhave been covering Google Plus since its inception three years ago. In that time, I have been a fan, a proponent, a critic, a skeptic, and conspiracy theorist.

If you don’t want to read a long article then here’s the short version of my analysis of Google’s latest in a series of failed social networking services: Google is trying to building a city in the middle of nowhere, where nobody cares to live, and doesn’t much care why almost nobody actually wants to live there.

It feels to me like a very rich, very opinionated Google has decided what the right way to do social media is and they’re going to implement this utopian vision whether or not anyone else is interested in joining — or attending — their Church of Plus. Continue reading

July 10, 2014

Hosted numbers: One way to make your business grow

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

Post by Andrew Lisa

Andrew-LisaBusiness owners are always looking to cut corners, save money and streamline their operations. Hosted numbers have allowed me to do all three in the communications department of even my tiny business. Here’s how a hosted number can lead to simplicity and savings.

Hosted numbers are phone numbers that are hosted by a third party that answers, fields, routes and forwards calls to the appropriate line. This could be a corporation’s call center or a cell phone in the pocket of a self-employed plumber. Continue reading