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Content Marketing: The Art of Communication

Great content is a powerful marketing tool .  Why is it so powerful?  With the use of your content, you can build communities and tell a story about your organization, your company’s mission or your personal brand. 

Social media, mobile technology, and word-of-mouth marketing have been serious game changers. People today are getting their news online, watching TV from their mobile devices and subscribing to magazines via tablets.  This lends itself to three points:

  • Traditional advertising is dead
  • Content marketing is the new traditional advertising
  • Content is King

According to Entrepreneur.com, a survey by HiveFire, discovered that traditional marketing, such as print, TV and radio advertising is being replaced with more non-traditional means of content marketing.  What is content marketing?  The Content Marketing Institute reports:

“Content marketing is the art of communicating with your customers and prospects without selling. It is non-interruption marketing. Instead of pitching your products or services, you are delivering information that makes your buyer more intelligent. The essence of content strategy is the belief that if we, as businesses, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, they ultimately reward us with their business and loyalty”

This includes blog posts, social media sites, videos and photos used for the purpose of generating leads, enhancing a brand’s visibility, and putting the company’s ability on display.  But your blog, Facebook page and Tweets are just the means to get the message out.  The real value is in the content that you share.

What does a Social Media Manager do?

According to Wikipedia, a meme is “an idea, behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” It acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena.  

Well, if you ever wondered what a Social Media Manger does, check out this meme.  Maybe people will understand what I do… yeah… maybe not. 

Socialmediamanager

Google+ vs Facebook… Who is Winning?

Google+ is where I engage with the social media, biking, and music community. I made these Circles to specifically isolate these groups, to drown out the other “noise” of other posts, and to focus on the conversations that mean the most to me.  Facebook, however, is where I hangout with family, friends, and well, people who say there are “friends” but who are more like very casual people I barely know and may, at some point, want to engage with.  Wondering what the breakdown of Google+ vs Facebook looks like? See the Infographic below.

Social Media: Where Are We Headed in 2012

 

Dreamstimecompsmall

You can’t deny that “social” took center stage in 2012.   Facebook snagged 800 million monthly users, Google introduced G+, and

Twitter is expected to increase its revenues by more than 86% in 2012.

The more time we spend online, the more we are able to connect with one another and grow our individual and corporate brands. We can collaborate in ways that never existed before.  At the same time, many people, even those in social media, are turning away from many social networking platforms.  Will 2012 be the year that Facebook finally hits the wall?  FirstPost.com suggests this may be the case.   Chris Brogan, President of Human Businessshared with MSNBC.com that he predicted we could be heading for social media overload.

With so many consumers and businesses using social media, 2012 will be the year of oversaturation. That will require a more focused effort to make useful/meaningful media or be left behind as noise.

So what’s next? 

Building communities and creating tighter networks will remain goals in 2012. Google Circles and others embrace these ideas, but to take these efforts to the next level, we must do things that cannot be automated.

  • We’ll need to go beyond just interacting with people and think about how to connect   on a deeper level.
  • We should plan to talk less and listen more.
  • We should value the power of partnerships that bring together brands, causes, and organizations to advance mission.
  • We should spend a good amount of time on closing the digital divide.
  •  We must make a difference.

I think David Shing, Digital Prophet for AOL, said it best during DC Week:

If we are spending so much time on the web it better make our interactions offline better.

My friends, I think 2012 is going to be an interesting year for “social” indeed.

The Big Four Tech War

As the Holidays near and the four powerhouses of tech, Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon are fighting for position in the tech wars and holiday season sales.  This is a tech war like none other.

“It’s the biggest, most intense battle in tech history,” said Ted Morgan, chief executive of Skyhook Wireless, a firm that provides location-based technology for mobile devices. “It’s so much bigger than even the Microsoft, Apple, IBM battles of the 1990s.”

Here’s how the four shake out:

Google

  • Makes money selling ads that appear alongside its search results.
  • Developed the Android software to run on phones built by others, including Motorola, Samsung and HTC.
  • Looking to acquire cell phone-maker Motorola Mobility Holdings.
  • Recently released Google Music

Apple

• Built success by selling computers, phones and tablets that work seamlessly with the company’s software programs.

• Announced that more than 25 million people have downloaded iOS 5.

• Recently shared iCloud, a brand-new service that lets you store your emails, music files, videos, and more on an Apple-controlled remote server, and access the data from any other device with iCloud support.

As a side note, the passing of Apple’s former CEO Steve Jobs has the entire tech community wondering how his absence will impact the company he co-founded.

“Since Jobs passed on the baton to Tim Cook in late August this year there has been concern among market watchers that an Apple without Steve Jobs at the helm will not be the same. However, some believe the skeptics might be underestimating Apple’s bench strength. “This is something they’ve been planning for and thinking about for a long time,” David Riedel, President and Founder of Riedel Research Group, said.  “One of the qualities of a good CEO is that he can pick the right people, and Jobs was such CEO, Jeff Ebersits, CIO at Shareholder Value Management.” Source

Facebook

• The baby of the bunch, Facebook is the world’s most popular social network. But founder Mark Zuckerberg’s ambitions are grander – and they run directly into those of the three other Titans.

• Facebook hopes to be an alternative way to organize the Web, a platform for consumers to spend their time online. Instead of using Google’s algorithm to search for news and information, Zuckerberg envisions a future in which people consult their network of friends.

• Most critically, content on Facebook is out of the reach of Google’s search engine. And the more time people spend on Facebook, the less time they are looking at ads on Google, which recently launched Google+ as a rival social network.

• Facebook is beginning to bump into Apple’s business of selling apps on its devices. Zuckerberg’s company has quickly become a powerful player in the booming market for social games, such as the popular FarmVille.

Amazon

• The world’s biggest online retailer.

• Benefiting from growing sales of its Kindle e-book reader and digital media, including books, movies and music, putting it in competition with Apple’s iTunes.

• Like Google – is shifting toward Apple’s territory of making devices. Not only does Amazon have the Kindle, but they recently released the Kindle Fire to rival the iPad.


Love, Lust, and Technology: Analog Dating in a Digital World

Thirst

From the edge of the net to the technology behind love and lust, thirstDC is bringing the nerd and I’m going to make it sexy THIS Thursday, October 13 at the NEXT thirstDC event.  My talk is on “Dating and Technology” and the question we will be exploring is whether tech is changing the dating game or are our brains just living up to their hardwired lusty potential?  We’ll explore how social networking, our gadgets, and our time spent online is changing our relationships with our mates and with each other.

Come on, you know you have a story to tell about that guy you met on Twitter.  Or maybe it’s about the girl who will text you ten times a day or that old college love you reconnected with on Facebook.  You may not know that there is a science behind all the texting, sexting and social networking or how tech can actually change your brain, your behavior and your thought patterns.  That’s what I’ll be talking about and I hope you can join me.  So, just what is thirstDC?

In a city where happy hours are just part of the job, thirst DC is a new recurring social concept that twists the typical bar experience and turns it into a “sexy nerd house party”, where world-renown experts speak to inspire the attendees to create innovative connections, learn, flirt, drink, and dance while the DJ spins until 2 am. thirst DC’s talks are short and thought-provoking, to spark fresh and interesting conversations among its attendees.

thirst DC is an unique opportunity for D.C.’s brightest minds to get together to share ideas. Founded by an intrepid group of nerds, thirst DCcreates the perfect environment for DC’s nerdiest and sexiest that thirst for knowledge, a stiff drink, and some attractive company. Whether you work in politics or science, but really are passionate about fashion or food, all we ask is that our guests expect the topics to be a bit risqué, and in return we ask that they be utterly fascinating.

  • thirst for technology? 
  • thirst for science? 
  • thirst for art and culture? 

We hope you’ll bring your thirst and join us THIS Thursday!

What: Thirst DC networking event
When: October 13, 2011 | 6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Where: The Bier Baron Tavern  | 1523 22nd St NW, Washington DC
Who: Anyone in the DMV with a thirst for fun, a good happy hour and nerdy talk

Purchase your ticket now at Ticket Leap and hit me up of you want a discount code… just because I like you!

 

 

Watch Out for the Social Media Police!

Media_httpwwwknockkno_abtge

Aren’t you tired of people poking you on Facebook? Wouldn’t you like your friends to STOP tagging you in photos where it is clear you look a hot mess? What about my biggest social networking pet peeve, tagging me in a flyer, advertisement or picture that I’m not in and don’t even care to see!  How about people who only post quotes on Twitter and never engage with you at all?  If any of these social media wrongs ring true for you, order the Social Media Citation notes from KnockKnock.biz and start handing giving them to offenders so we can stop social media posting abuse in all forms.  By the way, you can go ahead and over share this blog post… I wouldn’t even think of giving you a citation for that. 🙂 

Happy Birthday Email!

Electronic mail turns 30 years old today. Where would we be without email? Can you remember the very first person you emailed? I know I can’t. Heck, I can’t even remember the last person I emailed. What I do know is I would be lost without it. I will admit I’m no longer a fan of big email campaigns and I now share more things via social networking than I do through email but I still couldn’t start or end my day with out email communication. Here’s a look at how electronic mail got its start.

Amplify’d from thenextweb.com
shutterstock_69369832

On August 30th, 1982, 29 years ago, 16-year old V. A. Shiva copyrighted “EMAIL” along with the GUI we still use today with the fields “To: From: Cc: Bcc: Subject: Reply, Reply All, Forward” and Email body and attachment.

“When I first heard the word ‘electronic mail,’ I literally felt it was sending electricity through paper. Those two words juxtaposed together in 1978 were absolutely new,” says Shiva. While many claim to have “invented email” the issue isn’t just one of semantics. With electronic messaging systems in place, Shiva is responsible for having transformed what was known as office mail into the very first email system. “That is what I developed, starting in 1978, as a 14-year old, for which in 1981 I was awarded recognition by the Westinghouse Science Awards for innovation, and in 1982 the First US Copyright for EMAIL,” he writes.

“The guys before me we’re involved in text messaging. Messages sent from one computer to another computer. Before that Tom Van Vleck was the first to send a message within the same computer to another user in the mainframe. Leonard Kleinrock sent a message across two computers on the asme network. Ray Tomlinson sent a message across multiple users across multiple computers. But my concept of email was patently related to office mail. That’s what I built: a database, a networking infrastructure and software programming language for email,” said Shiva to me over a Skype call.

Nearly 30 years later and V. A. Shiva is now teaching a class at MIT called “Systems Visualization,” which is currently oversubscribed. It’s a cross discipline class that enables engineers to connect multiple subsystems.  built to educate MIT engineers on how to do that. The class aims to artistically answer, in drawing form, the design of services and concept. How do you build a health care system? Or how do we visualize human health in today’s advertising driven society? How do you innovate? How is innovation affected by cultural mores?

When asked about the future of email, Shiva thinks it’s here to stay, regardless of the rise of social media and text messaging. “I think email has a very particular purpose and I think it’s going to grow in that…Web mail might decline but devices will still access people’s email communications. Facebook may do some integrated email but fundamentally it will be email.

Ironically, even as Zuckerburg declares as some trade journals said, “EMAIL IS DEAD”, he is launching @Facebook as a direct challenge to GMail. He says it will have EMAIL in it, along with other types of “messaging.” Facebook produces billions of EMAIL messages everyday.”

Read more at thenextweb.com

Why I Deleted Your Post!

Removepost

People forget that the most important part of social networking is… well… being social and networking.  How is it that someone who doesn’t interact with me – either online or off- finds it permissible to post information on my Facebook wall.  They will often promote their upcoming book release, event, or new business venture?  They have never, ever engaged with me on one single topic… ever. Yet, they have no problem asking to me like their Facebook page, support their contest or vote for their business. It’s like walking into a party, (barely) introducing yourself, then telling having that person ask you to tell everyone else in the room why their business is so great. Who would do that?

How can it be that someone who didn’t bother to take the time to ever send me so much as one single tweet, feels comfortable sending me a DM to Tweet something for them?  Well, I won’t do it.  If you do not socialize with me; I will not support your cause, event or business.  I will promptly delete your post and may potentially block you from accessing my sites all together.  Don’t tag me in the photos that I’m not actually in.  Don’t post your fliers and website information to my wall.  Oh, and PLEASE stop asking me to Tweet details about your event as part of your marketing strategy.  But instead of just fussing about what doesn’t work, let me give you an example of what does.

For over a decade, I was a part-time aerobic instructor.  For a time, I was even a personal trainer. Seven years ago I decided I didn’t want to teach anymore.  I just wanted to do my day job and not worry about coming up with new routines.  As a result… you guesed it… the pounds have started to creep on.  My muscle mass has began to decrease at an alarming rate and I’ve lost quite a bit of bone density.  I am an avid biker – clocking at least 25 miles a week – so my heart is healthy but my body is weak.  So, I’ve recommitted myself to getting back into shape.  I’ve been working out and using my favorite fitness apps to share my progression on Facebook and Twitter.

For the past month, a Facebook friend has been commenting on my posts, encouraging me and providing me with inspiration.  As a result, I started watching his Facebook posts more closely.  Come to find out… my Facebook friend, Orlando Darden Jr, is a personal trainer, has a Facebook group page and runs a FREE Bootcamp just blocks from my house.  He never once, in all this time, posted one single thing about his business or occupation.  He never tweeted me anything about what he does (he Tweets as @BodyFitDC).  But, because he’s been social… being generally supportive and interested in my progress.. engaging with me online… I found out what he does on my own.  Once I discovered he was a trainer, I joined his Bootcamp via Meetup and of course I will naturally be tweeting, blogging and doing Facebook posts about my progress and his personal training skills.  He gets free marketing and promotion… organically… without having to ask.

Remember, it’s called social networking… so go ahead… start being social… start to care about the people you interact with online.  Otherwise, at least in my case, I’m deleting your post from my wall – quick, fast, and in a hurry- and won’t be tweeting anything on your behalf.  Oh, and in an ironic twist, I will post this blog on your wall or send it to you in a Tweet as an FYI and as free promotion for my blog.  Hey, fair is fair.  I’ll “see” you online!

Five Apps I’m In Love With

If you are anything like me you have lots, and lots, and lots of apps on your smartphone.  Some of them you use all the time and there are others you’ve totally forgotten about.  I have the ones I use daily, Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare, but there are some apps that have been revolutionary for me.  Yes, I said “revolutionary” as in “bringing about a major fundamental change”.  Here are five of my favorite apps that I didn’t know until recently I couldn’t live without.

  1. KeyRing has allowed me to get rid of all those annoying loyalty cards that were dangling on my key chain or were never available in my wallet when I needed them.  Using KeyRing, I scan and store my existing loyalty cards.  Then, when I go to use the card, the barcode gets scanned from my phone.  The other cool thing, once you’ve entered a card, you’ll also have access to exclusive coupons and discounts.

    King_ring

  2. iMapMy is a fitness tracking application that enables you to use the built-in GPS on your mobile device to track all of your fitness activities.  That’s all fine and dandy but what I like is this is the first app I’ve found that let’s me track my biking activity.  Sure, the Nike Plus + iPod tracks my running but I’m not really a runner.  I bike… a lot.  So, now I can keep a log of my workouts or normal rides around the city. I can also share my activities with my social network with friends who will surely be impressed by my skills.  But that’s just an added advantage.
    Imap_my_ride
  3. Like so many people, I’ve found that it’s difficult to find time to workout.  With the 200 Situps app I can use my smartphone to easily work up to 200 sit-ups with timed rest periods that adjust to my level of fitness.  In less than three weeks and in under 15 minutes I’m up to 182 sit-ups.  Go ahead, be impressed, I am.  The added advantage of this app, you can share your progress with your social networks and they can cheer you on… and keep you accountable!  I got this in my Facebook inbox this morning, “so, Danielle, haven’t seen you check in with your sit-ups.  Did you give up”?  Needless to say I’ll be back at it this evening.  

    200_situps

  4. The Whole Food app is another great one.  I’m not the world’s best cook but I do OK in the kitchen.  However, I do much better with the Whole Food App.  I can find great organic meals or design some of my own and the app will tell me what to purchase and now to prepare the meal.  I can also get simple, practical advice on nutrition and green living.  Look, grocery shopping and eating healthy is hard enough.  I’ll take all the help I can get!
    Whole_foods
  5. Finally, I’m kinda obsessed with Frenzapp.  This app allows you to share your apps with friends.  You can pick which apps you actually share and it’s very slow to identify all your apps loaded on your mobile devise, but it’s a cool way to share the ones you like and find new ones that your friends are using.  If you’re on Frenzapp, friend me and let’s start sharing apps.  If not, check back next month for more apps I’m in love with and in the mealtime, share some of you’re own!
    Friendzap

How Women Really Feel About Facebook Friends

“Daily deals site Eversave talked to 400 women about their Facebook relationships. The company originally conducted the survey as market research on the social network’s influence on the daily deals ecosystem, but Eversave was surprised to uncover the love/hate relationship between women and their online friends.

For example, the majority of female respondents said they had at least one friend who was a “drama queen” on Facebook. A majority also said they had at least one obnoxiously “proud mother” as a Facebook friend.

Most women — 83% of respondents in this survey — are annoyed at one time or another by the posts from their Facebook connections. For these respondents, the most off-putting post was some kind of whine; a full 63% said complaining from Facebook friends was their number one pet peeve, with political chatter and bragging coming in a distant second and third.

The respondents also said at least one of their Facebook friends tended to:

* Share too many mundane updates too often (65%)
* “Like” too many posts (46%)
* Inappropriately or too frequently use Facebook to promote causes (40%)
* Project false information or images of a perfect life (40%)

Read more from our friends a Mashable.com

Amplify’d from mashable.com