Tag Archives: blogging

Mental Monday: The New Rules of Marketing & PR by David Meerman Scott

Good afternoon, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

Mental Monday is back this time I am reviewing The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott.

This is book has 21 chapters in three parts starting with how the web has changed the rules of marketing and PR, moving onto web based communications to reach buyer and the third part is action plans to harness the web.

The book explains the different areas of marketing and pr including blogging, video, news releases, web sites, website content and writing marketing plans.  It includes lots of examples of how the different ideas have been used in businesses.  The action plan part of the book is all about implementation, for example how to start a blog, what to write etc.  The implementation is at a basic level, so for people wanting detail you will need to go elsewhere.  This is one of those books which you pick up refer to a chapter or two, put it back down and then pick up again next time you need it.  There is a lot of information in it, it is suitable for complete newbies, and for people who know what they are doing there are lots of examples to get your creative juices flowing.

Below are some bits that I enjoyed which are direct quotes from the book…

  • The new rules of finding a job require you to share your knowledge and expertise with a world that is looking for what you have to offer
  • It is critical to respond quickly to situations as they unfold on the web.  Reacting quickly and honestly in the same forums where the discussions are taking place is essential
  • Marketers must take active participation in the communities that matter for their markets.  But you can’t just stand on the virtual sidelines and post only when you have something for sale or a comment about your products and services.
  • Social media sites are places that people congregate to discuss things that are important to them
  • Thanks to the power of search engines, my blog is also the most vital and effective way for people to find me.  Every word of every post is indexed by Google….
  • The good news is that blogging most certainly generates returns for anyone who creates an interesting blog and posts regularly to it
  • Should you believe everything you read on blogs?  Hell no! That’s akin to believing everything you hear on the street or in a bar.  Thinking of the web as a city, rather than a newspaper, and bloggers as individual citizen voices provides implications for all net-citizens.
  • “you can’t reheat a souffle” John Frazier from Quinn & Co talking about the Tourism Queensland Best job in the world campaign
  • For content that is best delivered via audio or for buyers who prefer to listen to content, podcasting is obviously essential.
  • The challenge for marketers is to harness the amazing power of viral
  • The more I research websites – and I’ve checked out thousands over the past several years – the more I realize that the best ones unite many important factors in a way that is difficult to describe.  They just feel right – as if the creator of the sites cares a great deal and wants her passion to shine through.
  • You must now think like a publisher.  You should develop an editorial plan to reach your buyers with focused content in the media that they prefer
  • Clearly and simply articulate what you want people to believe
  • An effective web marketing plan requires an understanding of the ways your buyers speak and the real words and phrases they use.  This is important not only for building a positive online relationship with buyers, but also for planning effective search engine marketing strategies
  • web content sells any product or service and advocates any philosophy or image
  • An effective web marketing and pr strategy that delivers compelling content to buyers gets them to take action

If you are just trying to get your head around what can be achieved in marketing online this is a good place to start, it lays out what you need to know in an easy to understand format.  There are lots of examples and ideas to get you going, but David does NOT tell you what to do, if that’s what you are looking for this isn’t the book.  As this Rabbit knows marketing and PR in this internet day and age is not a cookie cutter one size fits all businesses/results.  Instead companies must first workout what they want to achieve, who their buyers are and then engage them.  What works is a matter of creativity, timing and appeal to the audience.  This book will get you started down that road, but for those of you who are not creative, use this to find out more, and then hire someone to get creative for you!

Have you read this book?  Tell me what you think in the comments below or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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Filed under Book Reviews, social media

Before your start on Social Media

Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

Today’s blog will be filled with furry words of advice to help you have a fantastic social media campaign.  It’s all very much common sense, but often (this Bunny included) we get carried away with the excitement and addictiveness of Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn/Foursquare etc that we forget to start at the beginning.  DON”T WORRY!  It’s not to late.

You want to use a social network for business, your business, it might be a hair salon, real estate office, coffee shop, accounting firm, clothes store, product or whatever, the rules are the same for EVERYONE.  So you have decided which social networking tool or tools you want to use, now follow these steps;

  1. What is the purpose of what you are doing? For your Facebook page what is the purpose?  Why are you setting it up (because it’s fun doesn’t count), I want real reasons, eg to build a relationship with my audience, to use it to find out more about them, to get my product awareness out to a wider audience etc – get the picture?  This is the same if you are choosing Twitter or LinkedIn you NEED a purpose, if you don’t have one, well it just won’t work as well, and you will find it harder to maintain.
  2. What are your goals? Eg for your Facebook page you want to get 500 likers in the first month and increase the click throughs to your website by x%.  For Twitter it maybe that you want to be retweeted x number of times and gain x number of followers in the first month.  Whatever you decide that your goals are these are something that you can go back to and see how you are tracking and decide if it’s working.
  3. What have you got to offer?  OR What value are you adding?  OR Why should people follow you/connect with you or like you? This is the old “what’s in it for me”.  This should interlink with your purpose, so if your purpose is to “be seen as an expert in social media” the value you add could be in unravelling the mysteries behind social media, helping people to understand it and use it to grow their business.
  4. What are you going to promise? I have said this before that your followers etc have memories like elephants – they never forget.  So if you entice them to your Facebook page with the offer of free ebooks or the chance to win prizes or a daily tip, when they don’t get it they WILL rebel.  Rebelling in the social networking world means de-friending/unfollowing/disconnecting, which when you have worked SO hard to get them is not what you want.

The idea behind following these steps is that when you get stuck and think “oh no what shall I blog about, post, tweet etc.” you know what your purpose, values and goals are so it makes it easier for you to deliver.  PLUS it helps with the consistency of your message, if people know you as a social media expert, then you suddenly start rambling on about how to make apple tart, it’s kinda confusing…  They won’t know what’s happening, they will lose a bit of trust and faith, who is this flaky person that yesterday was telling us how to get more likers on Facebook and now is talking about how to get the pastry just right on an apple tart…..

If you already have your social networking set up, it is NEVER too late to go back and revisit what you are doing and why, and don’t think you have to stay with what you decide forever.  However don’t change your mind daily, but often it can take a while to find your niche that both you and your readers are comfortable with, so by all means try out a few things, but let them know.  For example, when I decided to start Mental Monday’s on this blog to review books, I said that I would see how it goes, but I am not doing it daily, only once a week.  So if say 50% of you guys don’t like it I guess you don’t tune in on Monday’s, but no one has complained yet!  But if you want to make a comment do, I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVE comments positive and negative.

Tell me below what you think or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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Filed under linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

9 ways to Share to Grow

Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

Firstly, an apology for all my avid daily readers, yesterday just completely ran away with me and I didn’t blog, so to make up for it, I will blog twice today 🙂

Today’s topic Share to Grow encompasses all that social media is about, the sharing of ideas, value, results, helping others without expecting a return and growing your business based on the fact that people trust you and love what you are doing.

How you can share to grow:

    1. Write a blog post in your area of interest/expertise and post it on your Facebook page, on Twitter, on LinkedIn etc.  Add it to http://www.ezinearticles.com have it on your website, share what you know with others, believe me it works!
    2. Write a whitepaper (whitepaper’s are basically pdf documents on a topic, usually a few pages long) on your area/passion and give it to people through social media, again it positions you as an expert and allows you to get your brand out there
    3. Create a short video and share it on YouTube/Facebook/Twitter, this doesn’t have to be super high tech, you can see what we do on Social Rabbit TV.  If it’s amusing and/or useful it will go viral spreading the word about your business
    4. If you have done a presentation recently, as I did today, then create yourself a free Slideshare account and upload it.  The presentation I did on using social media for B2B is now up on Slideshare.  If you look around Slideshare you will see that the presentations are sometimes a few slides and sometimes lots, so you just say what you want to and then put your branding on it, just try to make it topical
    5. Use the answers section in LinkedIn (click on the more button on the top navigation to get to it), answer questions from people in your areas of expertise, you will find that you will quickly grow your network and opportunities will start to come your way
    6. Read other people’s blogs and make comments – not just a cool thanks comment, but adding value, it could be an example of when you have seen that working, or asking for more clarification, if you add value feel free to put a link back to your site/blog at the bottom
    7. Write up a case study of your successes with social media/or other topics, tell the world, don’t be modest.  There are lots of doubters on social media out there looking for ideas and suggestions, so tell them what results you can get.  Plus it helps others when they are writing presentations.  For the B2B preso I did today I struggled to find case studies that actually gave results – a lot of people do not share well.  The case studies can be used when responding to blogs, answering questions on LinkedIn, posted on your blog, tweeted out, posted on slideshare and will get you a lot of exposure
    8. If you are using Twitter regularly search on hash-tags that are relevant to your business, and then respond to comments, eg I sent a tweet asking about venues in Brisbane for the events next week, I got a response from a conference centre asking if I needed any help – I liked that
    9. If networking groups are looking for someone to talk on an area you are an expert in volunteer (it’s highly unlikely you will get paid), but it is good exposure for your business, and again positions you as an expert and you can share your knowledge with others.  Don’t forget you can approach them as well.

    The moral to this story is put yourself out there, you are an expert (in something) so show people.  Opportunities do not very often just land in your lap, instead you have to put the work in for them to fall.

    I’d love to hear of any successes you have had sharing with others, please tell me in the comments or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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      Filed under Blogging, Facebook fan pages, facebook page, linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

      Why bother with a blog?

      Good Afternoon, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of Social Media.

      Blogging is a hot topic, and there are hundreds of millions of people with a blog, however according to Darren Rowse of Problogger most bloggers don’t make it past the three-month mark – You will be pleased to know that this Rabbit is a week over the 3 month line… phew 🙂

      So if you have become inspired by this and other blogs and think, “I can do that”  I’ve gathered some intel on what being a blogger involves – apart from being able to surf the net.

      Technorati have a lot of information on their site about blogging www.technorati.com/blogging and one article in particular found that 15% of bloggers spend 10 hours or more blogging!  The graph below shows the number of hours different types of people spend blogging, if you click on it you can go straight to the article.

      Reading these stats I was amazed, I mean this Rabbit now blogs daily, and in my daily plan I allow 30 minutes for it, but often it will take longer, because posting often involves:

      • Thinking of a topic
      • Researching the topic (depending on what it is)
      • Reading other articles for ideas on a topic
      • Running a survey
      • Finding pictures
      • Making a video
      • Writing it
      • Spell checking
      • Re-writing it when it didn’t save the first time!
      • Finding other articles to refer to

      So why do bloggers bother, are they really that keen to get their voice heard?  Here are the reasons:

      • They want to educate people
      • They want to position themselves as an expert
      • They are on their soap-box about a topic
      • They are trying to give people a reason to visit their site/page
      • They love writing
      • They want to get more customers for their business
      • They have a huge ego and think that EVERYONE needs to hear what they have to say (note: this is probably a very small % but I couldn’t – surprizingly find stats on it!)

      In a white paper from Hubspot.com I found this graph which amazed me!  According to their research if you blog multiple times a day you are guaranteed to acquire a customer – WOW!  However before we all get too excited it still has to be quality blogs, you can’t just send random bits of info otherwise you will soon lose your readers. 

      So we now know that we need to be blogging quality material multiple times per day… But what is that going to get us?  Below are stats from the same Technorati article that show that most blogs (49%) are read by less than 1000 readers, so how is your blog going vs. these stats?  I have to admit that Social Rabbit is way below the 1000 mark, but that is the new goal, so if you love the blog please tell your friends.

      This is a very quick look down the tunnel that is blogs, but it gives you a quick insight into what you need to do, and what you can achieve, don’t worry there will be more posts on this topic as this Rabbit is finding it very interesting.  What would you like to know about blogging?  Tell me in the comments or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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      Filed under Blogging, social media

      Consistency matters

      Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      Today is a soap box rant….  Consistency, does it really matter? YES YES YES

      Don’t you hate it when you call up a service provider and get told one thing, then you call back the next day and get told something else, then call back again and get a third story?  Grrrr this bunny does, it nearly makes me turn rabid!!

      Whether you are tweeting, facebooking, blogging or whatever this is exactly the same as a customer service experience, ie you need to be consistent.  It is no good telling your followers/fans/readers in one post something, that you then change your mind about in the next post without acknowledging that you have changed your mind.  TRANSPARENCY people is the name of the game.

      Have you noticed how people like it when others are honest and upfront?  Well duh! Hello of course, because they know exactly where they are.  Posting is the same, be honest and transparent with your readers/fans/followers and they will appreciate it.  Lie to them and they won’t be following you for long!

      You will notice this bunny is honest, upfront and will tell you how it is, even if sometimes the bouncing up and down may get a little indignant!  What do you get annoyed about that isn’t transparent?  Tell me in the comments.

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      Filed under Small business, social media

      13 Reasons Social Media works

      Good morning, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      13 reasons social media works is responding my the post 13 excuses for social media not working, I can’t really give you 13 excuses and let you loose on the world, so here are the responses with facts and figures to back it up, no more excuses people!

      1) No Time…  All it takes is an hour a  day, as this article shows you how… 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the evening

      2) Facebook fan pages don’t work for my industry.  Facebook pages are used by a huge number of different industries out there (I don’t want to say all, as I haven’t checked to be honest!).  There are case studies on Movie releases, Police stations, Charities, cafes, non-profitsrestaurants, pizza places, small businesses, it’s not just products, but services as well.  As a service you can promote special offers, position your business as an expert and use your fans as a mini focus group.

      3) It’s a fad.  Nope, NO.  Facebook has been around since 2004, MySpace since 2003 and 6/7 years on they are still growing, as well as other social networks.  The advertising spend on TV and print is decreasing and companies are moving to online.  Groundswell blogs that social networks will be like ‘air’ in five years time.  It’s not going anywhere.

      4) No one I know uses it.  This is hard to believe, 400 million people on Facebook globally and growing, LinkedIn has 60 million professionals on it.  People are using it in their personal life, and they are using it to talk to companies.  Go and ask your clients/customers, I bet more than you think are using it.

      5) My friend tried it and it didn’t work for their business.  Social media is not a shoe you try on and everyone loves it, you have to build it to suit your audience.  You need to look at your audience, how old they are, what they are interested in and use this info to engage them in your social media.  It is not a one size fits all approach, look at what has worked for similar businesses in your industry.

      6) People where I live don’t use it.  Check out this link, it will show all the countries globally where people are using Facebook, and that is just one social network.  Unless you are living on the Moon it’s very very very unlikely that no one is using social media.  I have just checked and astronauts have been using Twitter on their space trips since 2007!  If you are interested here is their Facebook page.

      7) I have no idea what to do.  This is a lazy excuse.  There is so much information on the internet you could read about it for weeks and still not get through it all.  Good starting points are looking at the Mashable website (also available as an iPhone app) and do a search for what you want, you can also find events on here.  Check out the Social Rabbit Facebook page, as there are resources on there.  I could talk about this for hours, but a good place to start is to ask someone, even Rabbit’s are friendly!

      8) I will take too long to learn.  Easy answer – outsource it!  Obviously Social Rabbit can help, but there are also lots of people out there that specialise in social media.  Just talk to them about what they have achieved for previous clients, and maybe even chat to past clients before you jump in.

      9) A Facebook page does not mean sales increase.  True, if all you do is create a page and wait for people to come along, because I can tell you right now that ain’t going to happen.  One page I have just started to work on – BodyBolster, has had 18 fans since June 2009, they hired Social Rabbit this week, and overnight we doubled their fans to 36.  The secret to this is actually talking about the page and  updating content!

      10) Only geeks use Twitter.  OK, harsh I know, but it depends on your definition of geek, is Ashton Kutcher a geek (he has the largest number of followers on Twitter with 4.6 million),or what about Oprah with 3.2 million followers.  Or Dell computers making $3 million from sales directly related to Twitter, or Best Buy electronics store in the USA using it for customer service.  I would say Twitter users are clever enough to know where their audience are and to engage with them.

      11) People in my industry are not computer literate.  It’ all about education, social media is like email was when it first started, it took while for everyone to get it but now people can’t imagine a world without it.

      12) Who’s interested in us?  The world is changing, people want to deal with people, not faceless companies.  People like the reassurance that comes with knowing the people in the company – they want to connect with them.

      13)  There’s no point changing how we communicate.  That’s fine, but your audience are moving into social media, so if you don’t look at it for your business you are going to miss the boat.  Think about how frustrating it is when a company you deal with doesn’t use a certain technology that would save you time, they probably said it’s just a fad, no point in changing, so what would you do?  Move to another company that offers what you want – You don’t want that to happen to you.

       Hopefully this has helped you understand why social media is such a ‘hot potato’ at the moment.  I would love to hear your thoughts, just click on the add a comment link below.

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      Filed under Facebook case studies, Facebook fan pages, linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

      The more you put in the more you get out…

      Good evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      This saying is a fact of life, and yet we all (well I know I do) deep down think, maybe this time it will just happen!

      Social media is no different to life, so you decide your business needs a Facebook Fan Page, you go and set it up, you have a lovely landing page, lots of flash apps and a cool logo, but only 1 fan (you!).  If you don’t tell anyone about it, the number of fans is just not going to increase (well ok it might, but it’s pretty unlikely).  It’s the same as if you had set up a new business, you’re working from your spare room, you have great business cards, but unless you tell people about it you’re not going to have any customers.

      Facebook and other social media is the same as the real world in this respect.  You can get really excited saying “I have to have a Facebook Page because there are 350 million peple on Facebook”, but don’t think that once you have a fan page (btw there are about 1.6 million fan pages out there, according to Facebook) all 350 million people will become fans of yours… After all why should they?  It’s like anything, people have to be interested in what you are doing to want to know more about it and/or be involved in it.

      There’s lots of great sayings I can say to you… but I think that this one “the more you put in the more you get out” is something that every wannabee Facebook Fan Page builder should take on board.  Building your fan base is not about quantity it’s about quality (unless you want to ultimately sell the fans off, which you can see http://f.anpag.es/).  You want to get fans who love what you’re doing and take the time to interact with your business/brand, because that is how you will build the connection with them.  Unfortunately it is unlikely that this is going to happen overnight, you need to put some work into it, write great posts, use fan ad’s, ask your friends to join and other time consuming activities.  But the reward will be there once you have built your fan base 🙂

      Of course if anyone has found the ultimate that app that builds fans for you while you sleep without you paying for it, then I’d love to hear.

      Keep fanning, and why not become my fan! http://www.Facebook.com/SocialRabbit

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      Filed under Facebook fan pages, facebook page, Small business, social media