Thursday, August 29, 2013

Fwd: FW: Twitter Expands Lead Generation Cards to All Businesses




After a limited test in May, Twitter on Thursday announced it is opening up its Lead Generation Cards to all businesses.

The Cards let businesses register users and their emails for promotions or memberships directly within a tweet. When you click to expand the tweet, you'll see an option to sign up with your Twitter handle and connected email already filled out.

In a case study quoted on Twitter's blog, outdoor gear and apparel company Rock/Creek saw a 4.6% engagement rate and generated more than 1,700 new email contacts in one week by using a Card within a Promoted Tweet. The company had offered a drawing to win a free pair of Chaco sandals to consumers who shared their email addresses. Read more...

More about Advertising, Twitter, and Business

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#Twitter Update Makes It Easier to Follow Conversations @mashables



Twitter released an update Wednesday that makes it easier to keep up with conversations on the social network.

Now, and Twitter's mobile apps show conversations in chronological order. Tweets in a conversation are connected using a vertical line.

Up to three tweets in a sequence are shown connected on your home timeline, so you can catch up on a whole conversation at a glance. If three tweets aren't enough, you can tap on any single tweet to see all of the replies, including any responses from people you don't currently follow.

Whole conversations can be shared with friends via email from, or as individual tweets from the iPhone and Android apps Read more...

More about Twitter, Social Media, Apps Software, and Mobile

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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

#Facebook Introduces More Business-Friendly Promotions Policy via @mashables



Facebook unveiled a new promotions policy on Tuesday, updating guidelines for businesses that run contests and sweepstakes.

The update is designed to help business create and manage promotions on Facebook. Among the amendments: The social-network giant no longer requires promotions to be exclusively administered through apps; now, they're allowed to be administered on Pages, as well.

In an official blog post, Facebook explains that businesses can collect contest entries by having users message the Page, post on the Page or like and comment on a Page post." Read more...

More about Promotions, Social Media Policy, Business, Advertising, and Marketing

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'Social Fiction' Brings Characters to Life via Facebook & Twitter via @mashables



A former Nickelodeon Animation storyboard artist and a Facebook employee have teamed up to create a new form of entertainment: social fiction.

Illustrator Steve Lowtwait and writer Michael Smith are telling a fictional story through social media that's centered around a protagonist called "Hawk Funn." They have set up real social profiles on Facebook and Twitter for fictional characters in the story, and they post about the characters' lives just like real people would. If you follow Hawk on Facebook and on Twitter, you can track the plot and learn about his life as a suburban dad in Colorado and his fear of the indoors. Read more...

More about Social Media, Storytelling, Story, Fiction, and Illustration

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Google Doodle Honors 50th Anniversary of 'I Have a Dream' Speech via @mashables



Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered on Aug. 28, 1963, his famous speech against racism, which would be remembered in history as the "I have a dream" speechGoogle is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the speech with a Doodle depicting King and showing some excerpts from the famous speech.

King delivered the speech during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, a political rally that was one of the key moments of the American Civil Rights Movement.

Check out the video of King's speech, above

Images: Google, JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Google Chromecast Gets an iOS App via @mashables (Google competes w/@rokuplayer)



Google launched on Tuesday an iOS app for its new much-hyped Chromecast device, which plugs into any HDTV to let you watch online videos.

The $35 HDMI dongle made waves earlier this summer when Google announced its debut alongside the next-generation Nexus 7 tablet and Android 4.3. When plugged into a TV, web content can be streamed and controlled via Android devices, iPhones, iPads as well as computers (through the Chrome browser)

The app will allow users to manage the settings and set up the Chromecast through an iOS device. The app scans for Chromecasts you've previously set up on your Wi-Fi network and makes it easy to set up new ones. To download the app now, click here. Read more...

More about Google, Mobile, Apps, Ios, and Tech

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Facebook to Pay Users $20 Million for Sharing Personal Data in Ads via @mashables




If you're one of the 614,000 Facebook members who appeared in a site ad without permission, you may have some cash coming your way.

Facebook was granted final approval on Monday for a $20 million settlement stemming from a 2011 lawsuit involving "Sponsored Stories" ads

The ads, which were posted on both the right-hand side of the site and in news feeds, used member names, pictures and details about the brands and interests they Like on the site. Members whose details appeared in the ads will now receive $15 each.

The five people who led the lawsuit claimed to represent all user and said the company violated their privacy by highlighting personal data without permission. Read more...

More about Mobile, Facebook, Advertising, and Business

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#NowReading: Can Chill Successfully Turn Video Distribution on its Head? via @mashables

Camp Takota stars three major YouTubers and uses Chill's new marketing system to build a community around the film before its release, letting fans watch the creation process from start to finish. The film will stream on Chill, where fans can also order merchandise and download digital extras, and creators get to track analytics and have direct contact with fans.

This Chill production, announced early August, has gained more traction — essential to this distribution model — than an episodic crowdfunded series that failed to raise enough money in June. But can this process inspire fans to sign up early, interact online to drive buzz and pay for online video content? Read more...

More about Video, Online Video, Video Distribution, Chill, and Crowdfunding

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FYI: Bloomberg Surpasses Reuters in Web Traffic for July via @mashables

Bloomberg made the best of the summer news doldrums, beating arch rival Reuters in web traffic in July. This marks the first time Bloomberg has done so since December 2010, a comScore representative confirmed to Mashable in an email.

The researcher reported that Bloomberg netted 418.6 million page views worldwide for July and 24.8 million unique views. In comparison, Reuters recorded 248.4 million page views over the same period and 24.1 million uniques.

Trevor Fellows, head of advertising sales for the Bloomberg Media Group, says the rise in traffic partially stems from the expansion of the content on both Bloomberg Businessweek and The former, the outgrowth of Bloomberg's 2009 acquisition of Businessweek, led to more business-centered content rather than a narrower focus on finance news. Read more...

More about Comscore, Reuters, Bloomberg, Bloomberg Businessweek, and Web Traffic

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Monday, August 26, 2013

1 in 5 Americans Still Lacks Broadband Access via @mashables



Even though more than half of Americans own smartphones, a significant gap in broadband access persists in the United States, according to a new survey released today by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project.

The survey says 70% of American adults have broadband access in their homes, and a large proportion of those also have smartphones. An additional 10% of Americans get Internet access from smartphones alone

Yet with one in five Americans still lacking broadband, there's a large deficit to be addressed. This can be done relatively inexpensively using a few wireless approaches. We could repurpose tge television spectrum, often called "Super Wi-Fi" to fill in the gap. Another way is to make clever use of unlicensed spectrum by new software-defined radios Read more...

More about Wifi, Internet Access, Broadband, Pew Report, and Tech

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This Wednesday's Webinar with Scott Schwertly: Firebreathing Presentation Skills: How to Present Yourself, Your Business, and Your Cause in 15 Minutes or Less

"Be transparent. Be a bit vulnerable. Know your own strengths. A great presentation is all about content (how you build it), design (how you design it), and delivery (how you deliver it)."

Scott Schwertly's words of advice for presenters have helped change the lives of presenters the world over, and this week's Wednesday Webinar will help your presentations, as well. The author and Ethos3 CEO presented a topic with us last year about building, designing and delivering an epic presentation. This time around, he's focusing on the presentation itself and how you can really supercharge your message in 15 minutes or less. gsi

Click here to register for FREE (8-28-13 at 12:30pm EST)

About Scott Schwertly:

Scott Schwertly is the author of How to Be a Presentation God and CEO of Ethos3, a Nashville, TN-based presentation boutique providing professional presentation design and training for national and international clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to branded individuals like Guy Kawasaki.

If Scott is not working with his team building presentations, you will find him in the pool, on the bike, or on a long run. Scott lives in Nashville, TN with his wife and three dogs. He has a B.A. and M.B.A. from Harding University.

Click here to register for FREE (8-28-13 at 12:30pm EST)

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Fwd: FW: Instagram Comes to Windows Phones — Sort Of




Windows Phone users have been left out of all the Instagram fun for quite some time, but now the photo-sharing app is making its way to Microsoft-powered smartphones

Well, sort of — it's not an official version from Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. And you might not want to download it just yet.

A French developer has created an Instagram app called 6tag, which includes most of Instagram's features, filters and sharing capabilities to Facebook, Twitter and so on. The free third-party app sounds like a sweet deal for Windows Phone users itching for Instagram, but according to Windows Phone developer Travis La Marr — and as posted to and spotted by The Verge — some major privacy concerns exist within the app. (Not to mention the chance that Facebook could pull integration at anytime.) Read more...

More about Mobile, Facebook, Microsoft, Windows Phone, and Instagram

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Friday, August 23, 2013

The Digital Divide Is Still Leaving Americans Behind via @mashables

At one Newark public high school, accessible Wi-Fi can be more valuable than a bus ride home

In Newark, a city with one of the highest poverty rates in the U.S., many Newark Leadership Academy students can't afford home Internet access. At the school, like all public schools in the city, Wi-Fi isn't available to teachers or students. Instead, teens hungry for an online connection seek alternatives in order to fill out job and college applications, complete homework assignments and stay connected to the outside world.

"If they knew someone who could turn their phone into a hot spot, they would actually pay other students to use their data," said Robert Fabriano, a 30-year-old teacher at the school. "They would trade bus tickets ... if they lived two or more miles away, or a couple of bucks if they had it." Read more...

More about Features, Education, Teens, U.S., and Mobile

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#Twitter Teaches You How to Hashtag via @mashables

Want to be sure your tweet is shared with the right group of users? There's a hashtag for that — if you can find the right one

Hashtags have become synonymous with Twitter, serving to filter what can otherwise be a wide array of difficult-to-categorize information

Users can join any conversation on the platform by adding the appropriate hashtag to their tweet. The problem is knowing which one to include

Twitter is trying to solve that. The company unveiled an infographic Wednesday complete with a blog post highlighting tips on choosing the best hashtag for your tweet. Read more...

More about Twitter, Hashtags, Infographic, and Social Media

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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bye Bye Blackberry?

In case you missed it, Joseph Nocera, had an insightful piece in yesterday’s NY Times about companies who get paralyzed by early success and forget how to adapt when market forces or other competitive dynamics come into play.

From Wang Computer in the 1970s to Research in Motion (aka Blackberry) today, the technology industry is littered with companies who were not nimble, ruthless or willing enough to “disrupt their own business models when they sense a threat on the horizon.”

It’s not only complacency or lack of fresh ideas that comes into play, but the alliances and strategic partnerships (tech folks call those the installed base), makes it harder to operate and harder to compete.
Same goes for law firms, accounting firms, financial planning firms and insurance pros. It’s good to get bigger, stronger, more powerful and hopefully wealthier—but it’s almost impossible to have a lock on the marketplace for long. Your premium service can become a competitor’s loss-leader in a flash. Your top talent can bail out on you at a moment’s notice and your clients might not be complaining overtly (but chances are they’re shopping around).

I recently succumbed to pressure from peers (not to mention my kids), and purchased an Android smartphone to replace my creaky Blackberry. My typing stinks on the new device and I’ve misdialed a few numbers, but the apps are great, it’s highly intuitive and my overall productivity is higher after just a few days.

To make sure you’re staying lean and mean, check out our Gut Check self-assessment test or other
tools on
the FREE Resourcespage of our website.

Macro View
Consumer confidence paused in August, mortgage rates are rising, residential home construction rose less than expected in July and the stock market had its worst week of the year. If you think that’s cause for alarm, then think again. The financial markets are up 16 to 18 percent for the year, housing starts cranked out another 6 percent last month and the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan is still near its six-year high. If some investors (e.g. profit-takers) are using this as a cause for alarm it’s like worrying about Detroit Tigers slugger, Miguel Cabrera having only a few big hits last week. When you’re hitting north of .360 for the year, even going one-for-three once in a while will take your batting average down a few tick, but you’re still putting up MVP numbers.

It’s easy to get complacent at this time of year when the weather is hot, workspace are half empty and the “Out of Office” replies outnumber your received emails. Don’t give in and wait for after Labor Day. Now’s the time to drop the email device and see clients and prospects in person. They’ll appreciate the effort and relish the chance simply to talk and listen, rather than having to type, post and scroll. 

More tips can be found on the FREE Resources page of our website.


Tags: Joseph Nocera, Wang Computer, Blackberry demise, complacency, unable to adapt

Monday, August 19, 2013

This week's Wednesday Webinar with @JayBerkowitz - LinkedIn: Your Secret Weapon For Business

LinkedIn is the business professional social networking platform, but how often do we truly use it to our advantage? Ten Golden Rules Founder and CEO Jay Berkowitz brings his knowledge and experience with LinkedIn to this week's Wednesday Webinar showcase. With some patience and know-how, you can turn your LinkedIn profile to a secret weapon for business success.

In this webinar, you'll learn:

  • 10 strategies to use LinkedIn to build an effective business network & personal brand
  • How to create a profitable profile
  • How to build and nurture your relationships through LinkedIn
  • How to optimize your profile for findability
  • How to create and participate in Groups
  • LinkedIn for Jobs and Hiring
  • How to use LinkedIn for business lead development
Click here to register for FREE (8-21-13 at 12:30pm EST)

About Jay Berkowitz:

Jay Berkowitz is an author, an educator, an International keynote speaker and an award-winning thought leader. A senior online marketing professional with over twenty years of marketing experience, Mr. Berkowitz has managed marketing departments for Fortune 500 brands: Coca-Cola, Sprint and McDonald's Restaurants, and he has developed online and offline strategies for AT&T and leading health and fitness website

Mr. Berkowitz is the author of The Ten Golden Rules of Online Marketing Workbook, the Founder and CEO of, a strategic online marketing consulting business based in Boca Raton, Florida. He is the host of the Ten Golden Rules of Internet Marketing Podcast, an Adjunct Professor with the University of San Francisco Internet Marketing Course and he has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, The Business Journals and he was interviewed on FOX Business TV.

Click here to register for FREE (8-21-13 at 12:30pm EST)

Monday, August 12, 2013

This week's webinar: Improving Websites with Visual Content by @MWooddy

Online marketing is a vast world that combines proven knowledge with unknown potential. What works today might not work tomorrow, but there are a few constants to ensure your online message stays active and relevant for much longer. Last week we discussed the positive impact that exceptional visual content -- from brilliant imagery to the very layout -- on social media has on your marketing. For this week, Matt Wooddy dives into bringing that same visual appeal to your brand's website.

In this webinar, you'll learn how to:

- Retain browsers for a more effective web marketing strategy
- Boost sharing with sharp visual content
- Integrate social channels for efficient time management for web marketing

Click here to register for FREE (8-14-13 at 12:30pm EST)

About Matt Wooddy:

For the last six years, Matt Wooddy has used his social wizardry to completely turn around the online presence of over 200 brands. Understanding that social media is more than just a place to promote your business, he uses personal interaction and entertaining messages to improve the branding and interest of any given company. His industry knowledge has ranged from tattoo magazines and motorsport news channels to skin care products and dental practices. Matt realizes that it's not so much the product that drives a good social campaign, but it's the ability to communicate with your fans and followers in a personal way that makes a difference. As a freelance photographer, visual artist and musician in his free time, Matt has developed these personal skills that connect humans with each other. Though not a marketing expert in the traditional sense, the advent of online marketing has made Matt Wooddy a proven veteran in his respective fields.

Click here to register for FREE (8-14-13 at 12:30pm EST)

Friday, August 9, 2013

10 Super Smart Link Building Strategies

Tired of trying to build links the same old way? Here are some great tips to get you started on thinking out of the box in order to grab some precious links to your website:

  1. Conduct a link audit. In order to figure out what's working with your link profile and what's not, it's often helpful to find out what your current link profile looks like. Plus, if you find lots of spammy links with their claws in your website, you can take this opportunity to remove them. Learn how to conduct a link audit here.
  2. Create a page of resources. You can attract attention from websites you're interested in by adding them to a list of useful resources for your clients. Not only will your clients love that you're helping them out, but the sites you're linking to will see visits from your websites in their Analytics account and take notice. For example, you might create a list of the "Top Ten Dog Training Resources" or the "Top 15 Cooking Blogs."
  3. Interview an industry expert. This is a great way to create linkbait - if you ask the right questions, people in your industry will definitely be curious to hear what this leader has to say. Post the interview on your website and share on social media.
  4. Write a testimonial for a product your company uses. Submit the testimonial to the company - if it's published, you can make sure that your company website is linked where your name is mentioned.
  5. Sign up for HARO. Help a Reporter Out is a website that helps connect reporters and sources. Patrol their emails daily and respond to any call for a source that fits in with your industry.
  6. Donate to charities and nonprofits. You don't have to shell out the big bucks - donate $50 or $100 and ask for a link on their donators page.
  7. Capitalize on local SEO. Make sure that your company is listed in Google Places and on Yelp. This way, it's easy for customers to find you and post reviews.
  8. Submit articles and blog posts to syndication sites.  Make sure to include links wherever relevant. A good place to start is HubPages.
  9. Take advantage of Google+ authorship. Yes, you can get your picture and G+ profile in the search results, and boost your SEO while you're at it. Find out how.
  10. Use your Twitter profile for LinkBuilding. That's right - you can use your Twitter profile to build some juicy links. Learn more about that here.
Happy link hunting!

Connect with Leah on Google+

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

10 Facts About Ads Quality Straight From Google

In the SEM world, there are constant discussions taking place on how to improve Quality Scores. Although we’ll never receive the Quality Score algorithm, we’ll take what we can get when Google gives us tidbits of information.

Here are 10 things you should know about Ads Quality – straight from Google’s mouth:

1. There might not be ads on all search results, even for queries that advertisers are bidding on.
2. Just because there is low competition for a keyword doesn’t mean that it will be inexpensive.
3. Your ad position is not a factor in your Quality Score.
4. Your bid primarily impacts your rank, not your Quality Score.
5. Quality is given extra consideration when determining which ads appear in the top slots.
6. Your ad conversion rate doesn’t affect your Quality Score.
7. A few bad days of performance will not ruin your Quality Scores.
8. Quality Score doesn’t suffer when your ads are showing infrequently or not showing due to pausing or budgeting.
9. Restructuring your account doesn’t cause you to lose your historical Quality Score information.
10. Google doesn’t keep track of your landing page experience history.

You can find Google’s details about the above list here. Additionally, I recommend you watch this introductory video explaining the ad auction by Chief Economist at Google, Hal Varian.

It’s important that you digest Quality Score information with caution. There are many more details that are factored into Quality Score that are not reflected here. Need a couple of tips to get you heading in the right direction? First, be sure to construct your account structure so that campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads are tightly themed and created in an organized and logical manner. Also, it’s important that your ads, keywords and landing pages are of quality and highly relevant.

We are barely scratching the surface with this topic. What are some high-level tips you have for improving Quality Scores?

Like this post? Connect with Erika Barbosa on Google+.

Image credit: North Charleston

Today's webinar with @MWooddy

Even if you're no photographer or videographer, you can make good use out of brilliantly placed images on your social channels. With the right forethought, a bit of time and the right focus, your fans will appreciate and respond with a bit more personality. 

Although the landscape of social marketing and online advertising tends to constantly change, there's one aspect that remains consistently the same throughout the years: images. Brilliant photos and captivating videos will always be at the forefront of branding, and it's time that your social channels received an update. From Twitter avatars to Facebook banners, your images tell a lot more about your brand than you might think. With a little time and audience analyzing, you can select the perfect images to help improve the reach of your online marketing.

In this webinar, you will learn how to: 

- Appeal to your fanbase through relative images
- Improve conversation through picture-based sharing
- Create a more favored brand experience among users 

Click here to register for FREE (8-7-13 at 12:30pm EST)

About Matt Wooddy:

For the last six years, Matt Wooddy has used his social wizardry to completely turn around the online presence of over 200 brands. Understanding that social media is more than just a place to promote your business, he uses personal interaction and entertaining messages to improve the branding and interest of any given company. His industry knowledge has ranged from tattoo magazines and motorsport news channels to skin care products and dental practices. Matt realizes that it's not so much the product that drives a good social campaign, but it's the ability to communicate with your fans and followers in a personal way that makes a difference. As a freelance photographer, visual artist and musician in his free time, Matt has developed these personal skills that connect humans with each other. Though not a marketing expert in the traditional sense, the advent of online marketing has made Matt Wooddy a proven veteran in his respective fields.Click here to register for FREE (8-7-13 at 12:30pm EST)

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Live Events Still King in B2B—But Reasons Not So Obvious

Keep your antennae up in the elevator and on the shuttle bus. Make time to engage an introvert

A new
study from ABM(The Association of Business Information & Media Companies)  reinforces what many of you suspected, but may have been reluctant to express to your peers. B2B marketers still place a higher value on live events than on any other media channel for lead generation and for promoting new products. Researchers found that 89 percent of B2B marketers considered face-to-face events a “successful” channel for them. Rounding out the top five were: Sponsored white papers (75%), sponsored video (69%), webinars (64%) and e-newsletter advertising (64%). TV, radio, outdoor and mobile brought up the rear, with less than one-in-three marketers advocating their use.

As I head off to one of the biggest annual events in the association world this weekend, it’s hard to argue with the power of face-to-face interaction in this digitally dominated world. But where I’ve personally gotten the most value is not from the trade show floor, planned networking events, “meet-up” destinations or social events—it’s from the chance encounters on hotel and convention center elevators, in the fitness center and especially on the shuttle busses to and from the convention center.

More on that in a minute.
At the end of the day, everyone at an industry or professional conference shares common interests with each other—or else they wouldn’t be going there to network, learn and associate with their peers. They’ve taken time out of their busy schedules (and dollars out of their budgets) to make the commitment to attending. And you never know if that chance encounter will end up being more valuable to your business or career than any of the planned meetings you had on your schedule.

Macro View

Despite a lackluster jobs report, home prices jumped 12.2 percent over this time a year ago, marking the largest annual gain since March of 2006, according to the Standard & Poor’s Case Shiller 20-city home index. Researchers said home values are rising as more buyers are bidding on a relatively tight supply of housing with the prospect of rising mortgage rates on the horizon.

Meanwhile, and index we created of business and entrepreneurship magazines (Fortune, Inc., Entrepreneur, Wired and Fast Company) was down 1.5 percent over this time a year ago according to min/min online data suggested a mixed bag on the B2B advertising front. On the midsize front, Inc. was up 39 percent, while big company Fortune was down over 17 percent. On the entrepreneurial side, Wired was up 9 percent, but Fast Company was down 17 percent year-over year.


You never know who you’re going to run into. But if you don’t get your face out of your screen and your fingers off the keyboard once in a while, you’ll never find out. As Susan Cain, best-selling author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Won’t Stop talking,”quipped in her keynote address today at the ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo in Atlanta, “some of the best ideas come from serendipitous interactions.” Long live the serendipity of live events!

More tips can be found on the FREE Resources page of our website.


Tags: Live events, serendipity, power of live events, B2B marketing, ABM, Association of Business Information & Media Companies, Case Schiller, Susan Cain, power of introverts, ASAE annual conference