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Short Post on Facebook vs Google+: Is the new solving old problems?

Posted on July 11, 2011. Filed under: Facebook, Google, Inbound Marketing, Marketing, Small Business, Social Media, Twitter | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Old vs New

Does the New Solve Old Problems?

Sometimes having a new online marketing tool gets us thinking about what it is about the old tool that we’ve just been putting up with because we had no good options. Until today, I wasn’t that focused on Google+, the new social media service from Google.

If you’ve read – or go back and read – my last few posts, you’ll see that I’ve used the launch of Google+ to focus on the fact that most businesses haven’t yet nailed online marketing basics – let alone what’s new coming down the pike.

But today I realized that Facebook would be much more helpful if we could attach other info than video and image files and outside links. I was posting basic info about an event being put on by an account I administer. It would have been helpful to attach a copy of the flyer or press release to give more details. No dice.

I searched around and came up with a Facebook-centric posting service called PosterWall.com that didn’t seem to intuitively solve the problem – although if I play around with it I might figure it out. But at least in the process I learned that lots of other people are frustrated by the file sharing limitations of Facebook.

To make matters worse today, in the process of playing around with various ways I might share the desired files, I accidentally deleted a previous post and there’s no way to undelete it.

As a subscriber to daily emails of Chris Brogan’s blog, I’ve been following his excellent and ongoing reviews of Google+. As a non-invitation-holder to the current field trial, I have to rely on trusted others to get me up to speed. Chris’ explorations have been very practical and give a visual peek into the Google+ world. You can see for yourself at www.chrisbrogan.com. No need for me to re-invent the wheel here.

But as I watched a very helpful ‘screen cast’ Chris put out today of the Google+ environment, it looked to me that in the area that corresponds to the Facebook Wall, there was no option for posting, say, a Word file. I left a comment to that effect and will let you know if I get a response. Plus I will do additional research.

Looking at the idea of Google+ Circles (different groups and communities that you can define for purposes of what to share with whom) I’m wondering what the difference is from the Lists in Twitter. I started making lists when Lists was first introduced, but as my Twitter followers have increased and people follow me from various arenas, I’ve stopped taking the time to figure out what lists they belong on.  Will that be the same with Circles?

I guess the point of this post is that what gets us interested in the new is when the old doesn’t meet our needs. If the new doesn’t meet them either, then it won’t surpass the old.

Image is from Mrs Logic Under Creative Commons License.

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Getting Started With Inbound Marketing: Take Small Bites of the Basics

Posted on July 8, 2011. Filed under: Blogging, Blogs, Business Management, Communications, Content, Facebook, Inbound Marketing, Jazz, Marketing, SEO, Small Business, Social Media, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

New Orleans Music - Inbound Marketing Basics

New Orleans Music - Inbound Marketing Basics

Today I’m blogging to music provided in the latest post of a very interesting person and ethnomusicologist (Google it. I did.) whose blog is called SocioSound. We ‘met’ through our blogs. Anyhow – SocioSound just shared five favorite New Orleans tunes. Two of them are also faves of mine by the Rebirth Brass Band.

I happen to have the album in my collection. So I’m going to share one of the tunes – Feel Like Funkin’ It Up — here and pass along an upbeat experience to boost you into the weekend. Of course, you control the play button so only listen if you want to.

All week I’ve been thinking that although social media and other online and inbound marketing techniques have been widely accepted and as they say, “…are here to stay,” there’s still a lot of learning to be done about the basics.

This morning I read a really interesting post about how people are using QR (Quick Response) codes in their marketing. I agree that the ability to help people connect with your website and various marketing offers by scanning QR codes with their mobile phones is very cool. But, for many, that would be running before walking.

Case in point: A bit later I had lunch with a newspaper editor friend of mine who scheduled a Twitter tutorial with me because she still hasn’t gotten up to speed. And Twitter is a particularly good tool for journalists. Plenty of people are still catching up with basic tools that have been around for awhile.

As I started to explore in yesterday’s post, there’s something new to learn virtually every day in online marketing and it’s truly difficult to keep up, even if it’s your profession. That’s why I’m recommending to many companies that they not worry about every new thing coming down the pike until they get the basics in place.

To me, the basics still begin with figuring out what you want to accomplish in your business. How many new customers to generate how much new revenue in what period of time? Once you know that, there’s existing technology to help you build and utilize a web presence to achieve at least some, if not all, of your objectives.

From what I can see, among smaller and mid-sized companies, very few are really using the web effectively for business development. Even though some studies show smaller businesses building Facebook pages at a pretty impressive clip, that’s only one small piece of a well-constructed online marketing program. And if you sell B2B, you may not want to be on Facebook at all.

It helps to take a look at the big picture first and then determine a logical plan for your company. If there’s a move afoot to update your website, you’ll get more bang for the buck if you take the opportunity to review your overall marketing.

Yes, your site is a central focus of online marketing. So explore what kind of site with what capabilities will contribute to success of the overall plan. Have the plan first. I still see lots of new sites with no SEO and people are till putting up sites built all in Flash, which search engines simply don’t see. So they can’t accomplish even the first step in inbound marketing – getting found.

Recently, I was speaking to a marketing director for an area business about inbound marketing and how it could be used in his industry. He was interested and requested that I get back in touch in a month. They were redoing their website, he said, and couldn’t undertake any other marketing until that was complete.

I suggested that a great time to begin developing an effective online plan is during the website redesign process. It would be unfortunate to invest in a website and then learn a month later that you should have gone in a different direction.

If you have a small company, invest an hour or two with a consultant who can give you a clear overview of the inbound marketing process — from making sure you can be found online right through closed loop analytics to assess the ROI of your efforts and improve where necessary.

Then you can begin to identify effective steps that are realistic for your company to accomplish. You don’t have to have the whole meal at one swallow. It may go down easier with everyone in your company if you take it one bite, then one course at a time, finally enjoying the fruits of your labors for dessert.

It must be the New Orleans music that made me finish with food metaphors. Have a tasty weekend!

Poster image by dingler1109 under Creative Commons license. I chose this image because it’s about a fundraiser to help the reconstruction of New Orleans and it also supported childhood learning – a concept not at odds with our learning the basics of Inbound Marketing.

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Ignore Google vs Facebook Battle of the Titans. Keep Your Eye on Your Plan

Posted on July 7, 2011. Filed under: Business Management, Content, Facebook, Google, Marketing, Small Business, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Facebook vs Google

Don't be Distracted from Your Online Marketing Plan by the Facebook vs Google Battle of the Titans

Anymore when I read my morning feeds, I feel like I always do when the local news gives the Monday morning movie box office scores. Why??

The online ‘movie of the month’ — Facebook & Google: Titans’ Battle to Destiny — is making my head spin. I’m used to things rolling fast in the technology world, but do you get the sense that at this moment the game has ramped up for some reason?

I’ve spent a good deal of time reading reviews of the Google+ field test. The arc that reviews have followed is similar to what I’ve experienced with other emerging tools and online phenomena.

  • The brush off (we’ll have to see what this is all about).
  • The immersions (Just spent several hours on whatever the new thing and here are my initial reactions).
  • The instant embraces and rejections depending on guru.
  • The reality of whether everyone other than the insiders actually adopts the new thing in time.

Now today, the news breaks about the Facebook/Skype collaboration on video chat within Facebook. I read the news right after reading Chris Brogan’s positive review of the Hangout feature in Google+ that allows up to 10 people to video-chat at the same time.

Apparently Facebook video chat is a one-to-one deal. I read several blog posts this afternoon that offer mixed reviews of Facebook’s new video venture. But does any of this really matter to you right now?

Readers, please know that I keep up on this stuff. But I don’t necessarily jump in and start blogging about the next great thing online. I’m working with small to mid-sized companies that are still trying to get their next generation websites up, figure out why they need to blog – and how can we ever find the time to do it – and a lot of other things that they need to understand and embrace to use the Web to grow their businesses.

So I say, WHOA!!!! Don’t pay attention to all the buzz and the battle of the titans going on among the huge players whose future lies in trying to control what the future will be.

Let’s not get distracted, my small to mid-sized business friends. Let’s keep our eyes on the ball and implement a rational online marketing plan, based on real objectives, using the proven tools of today.

Promise. When the new stuff is really meaningful to your business, I’ll help get you up to speed.

Is your head spinning with daily Google-Facebook news? What are you doing to keep your online marketing plan on track?

Image by Jason Barles Under Creative Commons License

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