Tuesday, December 31, 2013

PTAT "People Talking About This" is the most important measure of Social Media success, who has the most engaged fans in 2013?

Many people focus on how many 'Fans' "Followers' or "Subscribers" they have in social media. We like to look at engagement as one of the most valuable measures of Social Media performance.

PTAT - People talking about this is a calculation of the number of fans and the number of likes, shares, comments and other actions they take on your Facebook Fan Page.

For example, Miley Cyrus has over 37 million very engaged fans with over 2,700,000 'talking about her' on Facebook.
Here is blog post with a full breakdown of the most popular social media sites and actions of 2013.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Wednesday Webinar: Social Media Summary and Outlook for 2014

Wednesday Webinar: Social Media Summary and Outlook for 2014



This year has brought a lot more revelations to light in the world of Internet marketing. Social media platforms have changed the way we do business, but keeping up with all of the changes and updates can be a job in itself. IMC Host, web developer and copywriter Matt Wooddy rounds out 2013 with this helpful webinar, summarizing everything we've learned and explored in 2013. In this webinar, you'll learn:

- How to strategize your Facebook campaign
- How to better use Instagram for your local audience
- How Twitter can help your small business turn into a global marketing powerhouse
- How Google+ can increase your website's awareness

Click here to register for free (01-01-14 at 12:30pm EST):
http://bit.ly/1eRkQfd

About Matt Wooddy

Matt Wooddy's background, formally, is in industrial design. He studied at Auburn University where he worked with top hardware companies Brother and HP. Since then, Matt has become an industry expert in design and how it influences marketing. He uses his social wizardry to completely turn around the online presence of over 200 brands, many of whom use his copywriting and web design skills to better brand their images. 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. He is also a lead editor, photographer and writer for alternative lifestyle print magazines.

Click here to register for free (01-01-14 at 12:30pm EST):
http://bit.ly/1eRkQfd

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Real-World Tactics for Reducing Stress

Make regular appointments with yourself and keep your employees happy

It’s no secret that we live in a hyper-caffeinated, always-connected world. Work/life balance is a pipedream for most professional people these days, even more out of kilter during the Holidays.

Fortunately, there’s hope. And you don’t have to go on retreat to India or Nepal to find a solution. One of our clients, CEG Worldwide, does a lot of coaching and research for elite financial advisors. In a recent study, CEG found that six out of ten high-income advisors were very satisfied with their current success despite the constant stress and anxiety that comes with managing millions--sometimes billions of dollars of other people’s money. As many of you know, year-end is often a time of wits-end.

Uncertainty about politics, the economy and the markets means many advisors have to reassure their clients continuously and they have to do a lot more hand-holding than they used to. CEG managing principal John Powell said a lot of advisors simply don’t take time for themselves and work too many hours, even though many times the long hour are sincerely in the interest of serving their clients better.

Face your stress head on

Here are three stress-reducing techniques that Powell recommends:

1. Trim your mix of clients. Examine your existing client base carefully to see if you are serving too many non-ideal clients. Sometimes it’s just better to let them go than to bend over backwards trying to save a relationship that isn’t meant to be.

2. Time block. Smart advisors block out time on their schedules for client meetings, during which they won’t accept phone calls or other interruptions. But they rarely do the same for other important tasks—from business planning to family time to exercise. Make regular appointments with yourself; block out that time on your calendar and treat that time it as sacredly as you do the time you reserve for your clients, Powell recommends.

3. Step away from the desk. CEG reports that some of its coaching clients significantly increased their earnings once they started taking more time off. Vacations forced them to be more efficient at the office. Also, when they were away, their creative juices start flowing again because they were away from the distractions of their normal environment.

Keep your people happy

Another good way to reduce stress around the office is to keep your employees happy. Jen Agustin senior director of marketing at a marketing technology company, Bizo, wrote recently that there are three keys to keeping your staff happy: (1) Top management sets the right tone; (2) Employees feel trusted; (3) You hire people with the right culture fit, not necessarily all the qualifications you seek.

1. Set the right tone at the top. No matter what size the company, Agustin said the “tone” ultimately gets set at the very top and trickles down to every employee. That tone can be positive in the form of fun, honesty and transparency, or in unfortunate cases, it can convey feelings of intimidation and mistrust. Which type of organization would you want to work in?

2. Show employees you trust them. At Bizo, you can work from home whenever you need to, but Agustin said 20 percent of its employees work from remote offices located across the globe, from Abu Dhabi to Omaha and Honolulu to Seattle. But it doesn’t stop there. According to Agustin, the only vacation policy Bizo has is, “take it when you need it.” When it comes to expenses, the rule of “treat the company’s money as if it was your own.” HR, are you listening!?

3. Make prospective employees feel like part of the team—during the interview process.  Instead of the usual interrogation or ambush style interviews, take candidates out to lunch or happy hour, or invite them to non-confidential meetings and ask them to participate as they would if they were already part of the team. “Past work experience is certainly important, but there’s no substitute for hiring someone whose positive, helpful attitude will ultimately trump any missed checkboxes on an interview questionnaire,” related Agustin.

We couldn’t agree more.

Conclusion

Stress is unavoidable, especially in the professions most of us have chosen. The good news: You have control over how you react to it, who you work with, who you surround yourself with and how you get yourself back to the right work-life balance.


Tags: Jonathan Powell, CEG Worldwide, reducing holiday stress, Jen Agustin, Bizo, keeping employees happy

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Friday, December 13, 2013

Don’t Try Too Hard to Have Fun During the Holidays

If it’s not coming naturally at your office, forcing the festivities only makes morale worse
As we mentioned last week, office parties and Holiday mirth are in full swing this time of year. Go ahead and enjoy yourself and make sure your staff, colleagues, vendors and strategic partners do too. Just be sincere about creating a jolly atmosphere. Nobody likes to have fun forced on them--especially if you’re in a miserable environment the other 11 months of the year. 

I once worked for a high-pressure, Israeli software start-up that coerced every employee (and their families) to attend every company social event on the calendar—or else. The food, music and venues were always top-notch, but how much fun do you think was had when 70 percent of the faces from the prior-year’s Xmas party photo were not there the following year? Dogs and casual dress were allowed. But even with foosball, how much fun do you think the engineers and developers were having when every other cubicle had a poster of an Egyptian pyramid-building team with the caption: “The floggings will continue until morale improves”?

Maybe that’s why 66 percent of American workers change companies or job functions every year, according to the
Sales and Marketing Institute.

Now is not the time to avoid making decisions

Also remember to keep your eye on the ball because if you let the next three weeks slip by you without making any real decisions, the empty chill of January will be on you faster than the piles of dead Christmas trees by the curbside.

As Oliver Burkeman noted in the New York Times this week, “fungineering” is in full swing right now. “Despite the sobering economic shocks of recent years, the Fun at Work movement seems irrepressible. Major companies boast of employing Chief Fun Officers or Happiness Engineers; corporations call upon a burgeoning industry of happiness consultants, who’ll construct a Gross Happiness Index for your workplace, then advise you on ways to boost it.” 

Sorry to be a buzzkill right now, but, as Burkeman explains, “fungineering might have precisely the opposite effect, making people miserable and thus reaffirming one of the oldest observations about happiness: When you try too hard to obtain it, you’re almost guaranteed to fail.”

You might as well tell people: “If you don’t start having fun, you’re fired!”

Still not convinced? A study by management experts at Penn State and other universities, published last month, found that while “fun” activities imposed by bosses might slow employee turnover, they can diminish productivity. Another study concluded that “gamification”—a NextGen invention that turns work tasks into contests, with scores and prizes — reduced the productivity and job satisfaction of those workers who didn’t go along with it. In a 2011 study of workers at an Australian call center, where bosses championed the “3 Fs” (focus, fun and fulfillment), researchers found that many experienced the party atmosphere as a burden, not a boon.

Wrote Burkeman: “Instead of striving to make work fun, managers should concentrate on creating the conditions in which a variety of personality types, from the excitable to the naturally downbeat, can flourish. That means giving employees as much autonomy as possible, and ensuring that people are treated evenhandedly.”
A recent Danish study found that lack of fairness is a strong driver of depression at work. On the flip side, if bosses are fair and workers feel appreciated for their efforts, then even heavy workloads won’t bring people down.

Conclusion

Don’t forget to get an early start on those New Year’s resolutions we talked about last week. Have fun with your friends, family and co-workers—but remember those tough decisions you’re avoiding now will be waiting for you—like that bulging envelope from your credit card company—come January. The longer you avoid dealing with it, the worse it’s going to get—like forgetting to throw out that egg nog at the back of the fridge.

Tags: Oliver Burkeman, Sales & Marketing Institute, Forcing fun for the Holidays, fungineering

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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Make sure you register for today's @TenGoldenRules Wed Webinar with @BrysonMeunier: Mobile Search Marketing Advantage

...

Mobile Search Marketing Advantage

Worldwide, business professionals and consumers are increasingly mobile first. Guaranteed, mobile marketing is more important than ever. No matter how much you want to ignore it, you can't—it's ubiquitous. It's time to jump in headfirst, to take your mobile strategy from zero to hero (and meh to amazing). Bryson Meunier is back with another helpful webinar to help you better align your mobile search campaigns.


In this presentation, you will learn why mobile search should be a priority for your organization, as well as basic and advanced strategies in mobile SEO.

Click here to register for FREE (12/11/13 at 12:30pm)
http://bit.ly/IMCmobilesearch


About Bryson Meunier:

Bryson Meunier is the Director of SEO Strategy at Resolution Media, an Omnicom Media Group Company, and a primary architect of Resolution Media’s natural search product and Clear Target Digital Behavior Analysis. He currently works with the Resolution Media content team to help drive SEO strategy and execution for Resolution Media clients, and to serve as an evangelist for Resolution Media’s organic search efforts throughout the industry. Bryson’s career at Resolution Media has given him the opportunity to help some of the world’s top brands achieve success in mobile and SEO, including Lowe’s, LeapFrog, Briggs & Stratton, Apple, FedEx, Groupon and others.


Bryson is a pioneer in understanding how mobility changes search engine optimization and is a recognized expert in mobile SEO.
Bryson has been a featured speaker at SMX Advanced, SMX Local & Mobile, SMX Social Media Marketing, SMX West, SMX East, Search Engine Strategies Chicago, SES Toronto, Digiday Mobile, Mobile Web and Apps World Forum, a moderator for Mobile Monday NY and SES Toronto, and a published author of articles for publications like Search Engine Land, DM News, Search Marketing Standard, Visibility Magazine, and others. He currently writes a monthly column in Search Engine Land as part of their Mobile Monday series, and the monthly Pro Search column on SEO for .Net magazine—the best-selling publication for designers and developers worldwide. He is also writing a book on Mobile SEO.


Click here to register for FREE (12/11/13 at 12:30pm)
http://bit.ly/IMCmobilesearch

Friday, December 6, 2013

Start Your New Year’s Resolutions Now


Use this month to work the bugs out and test your will power.

Holiday parties are starting. Fruitcakes, cookies and chocolates are piling up in the office kitchen faster than the incomplete budget forecasts and year-end statements on your desk. Your nieces, nephews and grandchildren are texting you constant revisions to their Holiday gift lists.

Ah, the Holidays! Just get me through the next month, you say to yourself, and you’ll start hitting the gym again, lose 10 pounds, get your desk and hard-drive cleaned up and back on track for 2014.

WRONG!

You have to start NOW on those New Year’s resolutions and find a way to stick to them. Not to be a scrooge about December, but now’s the best time to test out your resolutions and work the bugs out so you can hit the ground running in January. You need to be brutally honest with yourself about your willpower, your stamina and how reasonable your goals are.

If you’re a couch potato, which resolution are you more likely to stick to—running a marathon in six months or walking/jogging for 20 minutes three times per week? Trust us, this works. You’ll feel better about yourself and probably look better, too the next time we see you.

Why resolutions don’t stick

While most of us sincerely intend to follow our New Year’s resolutions, most of the time we break them. According to researcher Richard Wiseman, half of all Americans set themselves a New Year’s resolution. Unfortunately, about seven out of eight of those resolutions (88%) fail. Those ain’t great odds. As Wiseman once quipped, that’s about 156 million failed resolutions and disappointed minds each and every year!

The reasons for this high failure rate are many, but some of the leading causes are that we set goals that are too high or too audacious. We also tend to be impatient, sprinting out of the gate in search of immediate “returns” rather than taking “baby steps” that will take some time before they move the needle. We also have to make ourselves more accountable to our stated goals. If you tell some of your friends and family about the new tiny habit you’ve created, you are more likely to stick to it. What’s more, writing your goals down not only makes you more likely to stick to them, but the process increases your happiness and sense of empowerment.

Beating the odds

Trying to get your clients to modify their financial behavior in the new year can be quite challenging, too. But it can be highly rewarding if true changes result, said Dr. Glenn Freed of Los Angeles based Vericimetry Advisors LLC, who we’ve been working with for several years. “And you’ll further cement your status as a client’s most trusted advisor,” said Freed.
“Framing a legal, charitable or financial planning discussion around New Year’s resolutions can be quite effective for communicating with clients,” added Freed. “You can have discussions in person or through a client newsletter. The key is to use these resolutions as a way to check in with clients throughout the year. Here are some of Freed’s favorites:

1. Personal Resolution: Get in shape.
Financial Planning Resolution: Keep in financial shape by sticking to your financial plan; keep your portfolio in shape by staying disciplined and rebalancing.

2. Personal Resolution:
Quit smoking / give up bad habits.
Financial Planning Resolution: Quit chasing the “smoking hot” returns; avoid trying to “keep up with the Joneses.” Today’s hot trend is all too often tomorrow’s toxic asset. Ultimately, bad habits are frequently destructive to your wealth (and your health).

3. Personal Resolution:
Learn something new.
Financial Planning Resolution: Be open to new investment approaches; consider new investment methodologies and asset classes; do not be satisfied with the status quo. Radical change is not required, but evolution can often be beneficial.
Glenn’s got plenty more he’d be happy to share with you at

Conclusion
Advisors help their clients follow up on resolutions not only in January, but throughout the year. Framing the financial planning discussion in this way at the start of the year and then following up consistently can be an effective way to help clients stay on the path to financial resolution success. Make 2014 a great year no matter what the markets, the economy and geopolitical factors throw at us.

But you’ve got to start NOW—not after the Holidays.

Our blog has more as well as the FREE Resources page of our website.


Tags: New Year’s Resolutions, Dr. Glenn Freed, Vericimetry Advisors LLC, financial planning resolutions

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Today's @TenGoldenRules Webinar with E-Commerce Systems' Shirley Tan:

Current Business Optimization vs Entrepreneurs

Shirley Tan is an expert in regards to business e-commerce practices and integration. This webinar will explore the metrics and measurements side of e-commerce, the comparisons between the two and how important adopting these systems can transform your business. In result, your business will stop wasting time, money and energy and if managed correctly, increased profitability and revenue will become apparent. Fulfilling your business obligations is also very important, so tune into this week's webinar to learn how to efficiently approach your e-commerce optimization.

Click here to register for free (12-4-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/IqhFwo

About Shirley Tan:

I’ve worked for my family business and in numerous banks. I’ve started my own business in 1985, opening a retail/wholesale business in San Francisco. I started AmericanBridal.com initially as a mail order catalog in 1994. That didn’t work out too well, so thank goodness the Internet came about and we officially opened our Yahoo! store in 1997.

By no means was success achieved overnight—there was much more sweat equity that in went into the business than monetary capital investment, which was good, because there was definitely a shortage of that.

The turning point was in 2004, when I sold my retail business to my business partner and focused solely on my ecommerce store. In 2007, we were awarded the U.S. Department of Commerce MBDA Regional Retail Firm of the Year Award. And by mid-2009, we grew our business 12-times our initial sales revenue from 2004 and had 30 full-time employees. I sold American Bridal in 2009 to the largest wedding portal on the Internet, The Knot.

I now consult with ecommerce merchants on improving the operational aspects of their businesses, via Ecommerce Systems, my consulting firm. shirley@ecommercesystems.com


Click here to register for free (12-4-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/IqhFwo