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Linking the Online World with the Offline World
Just think about it. You are in an industry comprised of many different professionals. Take the Real Estate Industry as an example. Home Improvement Contractors, Property Managers, Real Estate Agents, Mortgage Lenders, Appraisers, Painters, Electricians, 203K Consultants, Plumbers, and even more are all in the same industry. Now think about this. A Real Estate Agent shares the location of an open house…
The Social Networking Domino Effect of Facebook Check-in
There is another side to all this transparency on the social web and that is one of security and privacy, especially for our children. I wrote about this concern in Are Smart Phones Becoming Too Smart?
BUT, for business, Facebook Check-in is a great way to market on the social web. Do you use Facebook Check-in? Has it helped spread the word about your business? Have you seen a direct increase in conversions as a result? Please share, inquiring minds want to know!
FACT: People Like to do Business With People They Know
The Internet allows you to get “known” by a ton of people virtually. So how can you do this? You join all the social networking sites you can possibly handle and “get to know” people. Interact, engage, build relationships, let them “know” you, trust you, etc. At the end of the day you find you are exhausted trying to keep up with all the new “friends” you have made on the various social platforms! The next day you get up and continue where you left off establishing, building and nurturing these relationships! Don’t get me wrong, some really wonderful connections/friends can be made in this way. I have been fortunate enough to have connected with some super smart, helpful, kind, caring, and valuable people. A special thanks to Susan Oakes, Sherryl Perry,Keyuri Joshi,Dennis Salvatier, Hollis Brown, Susanna Hess,Kim Jensen,Caterina Alexon,Gary Smith, and more. I met these people online via the social media route and am very grateful to them for the various ways they have added value to my life!
Turn Your Virtual Handshake into a Virtual Business Card
However, what if you could fast-forward the “getting to know you” stage of your relationship-building process? You know, the personal stuff that we openly share like marital status, children, hobbies, etc. What if there were a way to put your profile information into a virtual business card so that those you meet on the web can get to”know” you instantaneously like in the video below?
The video above was originally made as part of a challenge/”homework” assignment from Kim Jensen to create a profile video. I liked the idea and ran with it. She even liked the video . Today I came across a contest on ActiveRain by Rebekah Radice called Create a Killer Elevator Speech That WINS Business Contest. I loved this idea as well and ran with it too! I used the profile video I had created for Kim, added a little elevator pitch content, and turned it into my Virtual Business Card. See, I even put it in my sidebar on my website(s)!
What do you think? Do you think using a virtual business card like this can save time in the initial “getting to know you” phase of an online relationship? Do you think this video gives the viewer an overall indication of who I am?
Thanks to Sherryl Perry of Keep Up The Web for sharing a video on PET Design that I immediately jumped on because of my interest and background in Psychology, human behavior, and how it relates to business.
So what is PET Design? “Rooted in psychology, PET design uses research-based techniques to leverage the science of Persuasion, Emotion, and Trust to make websites more engaging, compelling, and effective. This innovative methodology complements classic usability, empowering companies to achieve their business goals.” (Source)
Designing around the user-experience just makes sense. After all, your end-user is your target market. It is well known that Emotions Drive Buying Decisions. How your target reacts to your content/messages has a direct effect on your bottom line. Will they make a purchase or not?
People like to do business with people they know, like, and trust. This is whole rationale behind relationship building, reputation management, and social media. So doesn’t it make sense to design your websites, marketing materials, advertisements, etc. around the user-experience to be persuasive, leverage emotion, and to increase your credibility by gaining your target market’s trust and loyalty?
PET Design is a scientific, research-based process that is beyond the scope and pocket books of many small business owners. BUT, the concept is in perfect alignment with what we, as small business owners, must be sure to do and that is establish relationships through social media, build trust by being transparent, interactive, and engaging, and Don’t Underestimate the Value of a Relationship.
Below is a video about PET design. It is on the long side, but because I am interested in the topic, it held my attention – a perfect example of the “end-user experience”. What I find interesting and what holds my attention, might not be the same content that holds your attention. Now over to you. Do you agree that businesses need to take the end-user experience into account?
Move over Facebook, Google+ is here! Or not? What are your thoughts about what impact Google+ will have on the use of Facebook? Do you feel like you are caught in the middle of the battle of the social networks? Well, we are
Take a look at the video below from Rooster Teeth – it is too funny not to share! Enjoy!
There are only a few sure things in life – death and taxes are two of them. The other thing is change. Everything changes: The economy, markets, business needs, technology … Is your business keeping up with these changes?
If not, you will be left behind. Reinventing your business and making your business model dynamic rather than stagnant is the only way you will be able to remain competitive and be successful.
Keeping up with Technology these days is no easy task. For those of us non-techie types, it is sometimes very difficult to ride the waves of new technologies that are popping up every day. The World is going Mobile and I have a feeling that it won’t be long before we will all be able to do almost everything from the comfort of our cell phones. What about Facebook? Facebook is Taking over the World. I don’t know about you, but this concerns me. There is not a day that goes by when I don’t hear about someone’s Facebook account being hacked (mine included), suspicious links are posted on our walls, and spamming runs rampant. BUT because our competitors are on Facebook, after all, everyone is, we need to be there too. As Facebook continues to offer more and more functionality, the lines between OUR brands and the Facebook brand will start to merge together.
Think about the Ma and Pa businesses that have been around for 20+ years reaping the rewards of word-of-mouth advertising alone (which is still THE best form of advertising even in today’s world of the Internet) but because the business world of today dictates that for a company to be seen as legit it needs to have a web presence, many of these smaller local businesses are feeling compelled to create a website. Keeping up with technology and business trends…
Now to my favorite subject – video. There is no question that video is changing the way the world communicates and the way businesses relay their messages. Even the search engines love video. Are You Using the Power of Video to Promote Your Brand? If not, you really should consider using it in some form as part of your marketing strategy. Below is a video about using video. Which stands out more – the written word or the video?
Did You Know that Elephants are More Intelligent than Humans?
Yup, that is what the scientists tell us.
The elephant brain is denser than the human’s, and the temporal lobes, associated with memory, are more developed than in humans. Elephant’s lobes also have more foldings, so that they can store more information. That’s why elephants have excellent memory.” (source). So here is the question, what has a better memory, the elephant or the Internet?
This post is actually following up on a comment by Rick Lelchuk about personal responsibility and how the onus of this responsibility falls on the individual. He used the memory of the Internet as an example, meaning if someone uses bad judgment once and blurts out something online without thinking of the long and far-reaching consequences of this action, it will haunt them for a very long time – because the Internet remembers.
I have heard of many specific examples where people are suffering from these unwanted consequences of “bad” Internet behavior – some not even by choice. One woman in particular was mentioned in an article about a scandalous case when she actually had nothing to do with the case; she came on the scene after the incident. This is actually not an example of personal responsibility, as she had nothing to do with it, but it is a good example of the very long memory of the Internet. Her name still appears on the first page in Google, and although it doesn’t say anything negative about her, we all know about “guilt by association”. Couple that with the fact that many people don’t read beyond the first paragraph or so and tend to make judgments based on perhaps only half of the facts. How many times have you heard someone say, “I read a review about such-and-such and it proves the product (or service) is crappy’, yet if you check out the same review, you might often find the second, third, fourth, etc. reviews are actually positive?
Take another example of someone losing their cool online and acting unprofessionally – as we have all seen. This person’s comment will be showing up in Google for a lot longer than he or she will appreciate – no doubt. There are reputation management companies out there specifically for the purposes of managing and/or helping re-build business’ reputation. Have you seen examples of people saying something online that has left its mark on their reputation? No names please
Without further ado, I would like to introduce Susanna Hess and an excerpt from her latest blog about the WebVideoAcademy which offers both a paid membership and free advice via their blog and a perfect addendum to my last blog post about how to produce and use video to promote your brand.
Is There a Right Way and a Wrong Way to Behave While Networking?
Yes! There are certain agreed upon behaviors that are not considered acceptable when networking on and offline. Jumping right in with a sales pitch is frowned upon in both online and offline social networking. Would you go to a wedding or a Bar Mitzvah and try to sell the other guests your blue widgets? No – I wouldn't think so. And if you did, you would more than likely find that others steer clear of you.
If you are part of an online community and all you do is talk about yourself and your product, you will either be tagged as a spammer or in some cases, asked to leave the group. As we all know, there are TONS of social networking sites out there and it becomes our challenge to decide which ones provide the most value for us and which ones we will devote our valuable time to. I have found that some of these networks are akin to large numbers of people standing in a stadium all just shouting out their marketing message, not listening to anyone else, and not engaging in any conversations. Needless-to-say, I do not participate in those groups. Why should I? I don't need to listen to myself speak – I already know what I have to say, right?