Saturday, March 12, 2011

Suspended Posting

As I have committed working with Aflac at, I won't be posting here for a while.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Food for Thought (Adventures in Social Media Presence)

What About The Face of Social Media?

Think about the large brands and agencies that are considered leaders in this field and think about something that they have that their competitors don’t. A face of Social Media. Edelman Digital has David Armano, Ogilvy has Rohit Bargharva, Ford has Scott Monty, GM has Chris Barger, WCG just gained Aaron Strout. These organizations are looked to for being leaders in the digital marketing/social media space they also have highly visible personalities that promote their efforts and raise awareness.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Research from Gartner Group (Customer Service)

Link to Gartner Group's thoughts on Social CRM:

STAMFORD, Conn., March 3, 2011— During the next two years, 30 percent of leading companies will extend the goals of their online community activities to the design of enhanced service processes, such as social CRM, according to Gartner, Inc. Social CRM for customer service has the potential to bring new and dynamic methods for improving customer service, and in doing so is creating opportunities for new and existing providers in the customer service and contact center infrastructure markets."Social CRM for customer service has only recently entered into the realm of contact center infrastructure and customer service software components, where it has been met with significant hype despite a limited number of field deployments," said Drew Kraus, research vice president at Gartner. "There is strong corporate awareness, including at corporate executive levels, of social networks and their potential impact on corporate brand management and customer service perception. We expect the high-profile nature of social networks and social CRM for customer service to rapidly advance adoption from early adopter to mainstream deployments despite the volatile and rapid evolution of social networks in general."

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Recent Google-Slap (

Recent News (SEO)

Google Inc. is penalizing Inc. in its search results after the retailer ran afoul of Google policies that prohibit companies from artificially boosting their ranking in the Internet giant's search engine.
Overstock's pages had recently ranked near the top of results for dozens of common searches, including "vacuum cleaners" and "laptop computers." But links to Overstock on Tuesday dropped to the fifth or sixth pages of Google results for many of those categories, greatly reducing the chances that a user would click on its links.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Google Social Search, a Recommendation Engine

Google Social Search is not a new feature, but it wasn't that important until now. Google used to display at the bottom of the search results page a few links to pages created or recommended by your friends and social connections. The feature automatically obtained data from Google Reader, Google Buzz, Gmail Contacts, Twitter and other sites linked from your Google profile.

Google's blog announced that Social Search will be used to enhance Google results and will become a ranking signal. Social Search borrowed Hotpot's interface that annotates results with messages like "Dan rated this place 5 stars", so you can see why a page ranks so high.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Digging Deeper into Facebook Pages: 11 Things You Need to Know.

(Updated for clarity:  This post is an excerpt and link to another blog...)

Now that I’ve had a few days to play around with the changes Facebook has
made in its Business Page product, and also to process those changes, I thought
I would share a few things that you should consider as you move forward. Overall
I like the changes, and I think you will too. But just remember: this is
Facebook. They aren’t done yet. More changes are on the way.

This is a rather long post, but here’s what you need to know. In some cases,
I’ll explain ways to use the new features, along with ways you should avoid
abusing them:

1) Check your business category – When you click on the
“Edit Page” button you’ll have access to a number of new behind the scenes
features. Now, for the first time since you created your page, you have the
chance to make sure you have categorized your business properly under “Basic
Information”. Facebook has added quite a few new categories and subcategories.
Having worked with a lot of clients I know that sometimes the old categories
didn’t quite fit a lot of businesses, or the person who created the page
mis-categorized the business.  And once you set it up, you weren’t able to
change it.

Read more: Digging
Deeper into Facebook Pages: 11 Things You Need to Know

Under Creative Commons License: Attribution
Non-Commercial Share Alike


The essence of this deck is that attention is linked with economic value creation. However, with infinite content options (space) yet finite attention (time) and personalized social algorithms curating it all for us, it's going to be increasingly challenging to stand out.
Let's  consider Twitter, for example. They are seeing a staggering 110 million tweets per day. And the volume is growing. But therein lies the challenge. Each tweet decays almost as soon as it is released. Some 92% of all retweets (and 97% of replies) are within the first 60 minutes according to Sysomos.
The situation in some ways is worse on Facebook where a highly personalized algorithm called EdgeRank curates our feed based on personal affinities, content formats and timeliness. There's not just one Facebook but 500M Facebooks. And, according to Vitrue, the majority of us participate at top and bottom of the hour. This means that anything you post to your Facebook page needs to create a social surge well before then.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Dirty Little Secrets of Search

2/14/2011 Update:  A reaction to this article:

PRETEND for a moment that you are Google’s search engine.
Suzanne DeChillo/The New York Times
Doug Pierce of Blue Fountain Media examined J. C. Penney’s ranking on Google. His analysis suggested a world of intrigue in the search business.

Readers' Comments

Readers shared their thoughts on this article.
Someone types the word “dresses” and hits enter. What will be the very first result?
There are, of course, a lot of possibilities. Macy’s comes to mind. Maybe a specialty chain, like J. Crew or the Gap. Perhaps a Wikipedia entry on the history of hemlines.
O.K., how about the word “bedding”? Bed Bath & Beyond seems a candidate. Or Wal-Mart, or perhaps the bedding section of
“Area rugs”? Crate & Barrel is a possibility. Home Depot, too, and Sears, Pier 1 or any of those Web sites with “area rug” in the name, like
You could imagine a dozen contenders for each of these searches. But in the last several months, one name turned up, with uncanny regularity, in the No. 1 spot for each and every term:
The company bested millions of sites — and not just in searches for dresses, bedding and area rugs. For months, it was consistently at or near the top in searches for “skinny jeans,” “home decor,” “comforter sets,” “furniture” and dozens of other words and phrases, from the blandly generic (“tablecloths”) to the strangely specific (“grommet top curtains”).

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

From the Bookshelf....

Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business (New Rules Social Media Series)


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Coping with Information Overload

For all the benefits of the information technology and communications revolution, it has a well-known dark side: information overload and its close cousin, attention fragmentation. These scourges hit CEOs and their colleagues in the C-suite particularly hard because senior executives so badly need uninterrupted time to synthesize information from many different sources, reflect on its implications for the organization, apply judgment, make trade-offs, and arrive at good decisions.

The importance of reserving chunks of time for reflection, and the difficulty of doing so, have been themes in management writing for decades. Look no further than Peter Drucker’s 1967 classic, The Effective Executive,1 which emphasized that “most of the tasks of the executive require, for minimum effectiveness, a fairly large quantum of time.” Drucker’s solutions for fragmented executives—reserve large blocks of time on your calendar, don’t answer the phone, and return calls in short bursts once or twice a day—sound remarkably like the ones offered up by today’s time- and information-management experts.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Job Search: Using a Profession Service to Update Your Resume

Job seekers may need a few touch-ups and added professionalism for their Resume.  Recently, Laurie Walker at the Diamond HR Group provided me a great value in Resume consultation.  She provided me with an updated format, updated content,  and deliverables of  paper and electronic copies at a reasonable fixed price.

Visit Diamond's web page to see the wide variety of skills available for organizations and job hunters.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

HOW TO: Design & Program a Facebook Landing Page for Your Business

Jonathan Goldford is a partner at JG Visual, an Internet strategy company that works with organizations to develop and implement their online presence. You can connect with Jonathan on the JG Visual Facebook Page.

Right now Facebook Pages and custom landing pages are bigger than bottled water was on December 31, 1999. Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, Starbucks, and the TV show House each have more than fifteen million “Likes” and are growing rapidly.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

New White Paper: Evidence-Based Search Marketing

Search marketers are under increasing pressure to deliver better results at lower costs. But the field of search marketing is relatively immature, and much of the research and emerging standards that gets published comes with minimal oversight and critical review. Search marketing specialists must find new ways to efficiently process this dynamic and ever-increasing set of best practices, and efficiently apply them in order to improve the outcomes of their campaigns.
Evidence-based search marketing (EBSM) is a new approach to campaign management in which search marketing specialists are empowered with actionable evidence, relevant data, and decision-support technology to improve results and efficiency. Based on the principles of evidence-based medicine, EBSM offers search marketers a rigorous process to conduct original research, objectively review secondary research and industry developments, maintain a library of evidence-based best practices and apply them to their daily campaigns.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Google Hotpot now on and around the world

2/01/2011 06:10:00 PM
Back in November, we introduced Hotpot, a new local recommendation engine powered by you and your friends. Using Hotpot is simple: you rate places on—restaurants, hotels, cafes—and add friends on Hotpot whose opinions you trust. Then the next time you perform a search, Google will serve up personalized results, listing places based on your tastes, as well as recommendations from your friends.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Want to Make a Splash on the Web? What to Do Before that Big Cannonball

From Hugo Guzman:

What I told that they needed to do, before being able to collect the social media currency they coveted:
  • Build a website that is conversion friendly and sticky (e.g. is intuitive and makes it easy for users to interact with it and share with friends)
  • Begin engaging within relevant Facebook groups & posting on relevant Facebook pages (not with promotional messaging, but instead with content that adds value to the community)
  • Begin following relevant Twitter users and retweet the content of said Twitter users
  • Begin commenting on influential blogs and forums (not with promotional messaging, but with content that adds value to the community)
  • Begin linking to said blogs and forums from within their own site’s content
  • Begin attending industry events and mingling with influential peers (don’t just promote yourself or your brand. Add value to the conversation)
  • Begin to gradually connecting with these influencers via email and other online  communication channels (not to promote yourself, but to genuinely connect and add value to their efforts)
  • If they have a substantial email database, start thinking about innovative ways to encourage email subscribers to engage with your social profiles and social content (some of your subscribers might be influencers)
  • Think about the proportion of your perspective consumers that prefer to consume contact via mobile devices (including tablets) and then figure out what you’re going to do to accommodate them (some of your niche’s influencers might prefer mobile formats)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

What are You Doing with Mobile Connection?

Mobile is a simple, easy addition to enhance awareness as a companion to other marketing.
When it comes to awareness, one of the biggest (and most expensive) opportunities is advertising during the Super Bowl – an estimated $2.6 million per 30-second spot. While the rest of the crowd was watching and trying to decide their favorite commercial last year, I was taking careful note of how these big-ticket advertisers actually had a mobile-friendly destination as part of their campaign.

In my not-so-scientific observation, of the 27 advertisers who shelled out millions each for massive commercial exposure, 23 of them did not have a mobile web destination available.

So, why does that matter?

Ideas for Action...,

Articulate: Word of Mouth Blog
Gabe Anderson Word of Mouth is the Articulate blog, hosted by Director of Customer Advocacy Gabe Anderson.
Gabe loves to share his passion for all things tech and enjoys learning from Articulate customers around the world.
Contact Gabe or follow him on Twitter here.

This guest blog post is by Articulate Community Manager Jeanette Brooks.

Yep, it’s Monday and we’re back with another recap of how-tos, conversations, tips, and insights from the Articulate community. Below you can check out a generous handful of all kinds of good stuff from the week that just ended.

"How To" Activate & Deploy Your “Ambassador Army”

Occasionally, when we present a client with a robust communications plan, chock-a-block full of public engagement strategies, we get the “deer in the headlights look” and an exasperated “we can’t deliver on this plan, we don’t have the manpower!”. The irony of this is that every company we propose an aggressive approach to actually does have the resources to engage the public, in the form of a built-in-army of ambassadors, AKA your employee base. A group of committed, engaged, educated and loyal people, many of whom are proud of what they do and proud of you as their employer.
A great example from 2010 was Edelman client TransLink engaging their employees to work out on the transit system during the 2010 Olympics to provide directions and encouragement to locals and visitors to the city. The approach was well received by the public and employees felt trusted and valued by their employer. A word of warning here however, we are not advocating to send your staff out willy-nilly into the world unarmed, like lemmings over a cliff. And we are certainly not suggesting every employee is going to be your best spokesperson to the public.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Amy Gallo: Managers who want to recognize employees for good work have many tools at their disposal.

Managers who want to recognize employees for good work have many tools at their disposal. One of the more traditional ways to reward a top performer is to give her a promotion or raise or both. But how can you know whether someone is truly ready for the next challenge or deserving of that bump up in pay? HR policies and company culture often dictate when and how people move up in a company. However, managers in most companies have a good deal of input into the decision, and in some cases they are the ultimate decision makers. Whether you have this authority or not, promotions and raises need to be part of an ongoing discussion with employees about their performance.

Amy Gallo can be found on Twitter here.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Google Keyword Tool Accuracy (Review)


Based on the results, it is not recommended that you rely solely on Google's Keyword tool for predictions that require high accuracy and sensitive computations, such as sales. Customer expectations set using this raw data can be difficult to achieve, because of the high uncertainty of the predicted results when compared with the actual impression figures.

You can, however, use Google's Keyword tool as a “rough” guide or estimate, but it cannot be relied on by itself for making final financial decisions. In this case, it is recommended that you use the actual figures of search queries, such as those found in Google Webmaster Tools.

To provide much more accurate estimates, it is recommended that you use the “exact” match type in getting search volume figures that coincide closely with the actual impression data.

Finally, in keyword research, you can rely on Google's Keyword tool to determine those keywords that are good to target by simply looking at the search volume data. It cannot, however, be relied upon to provide accurate projections in terms of sales and actual traffic.

No Mobile Site? Don’t Make Your Customers Angry

Reflecting on all the Holiday hustle and bustle, thank goodness the shopping trips are over. Running from this store to that, fighting the crowds of folks frantically searching for the perfect gift and the best deals.
If you were anything like me, you found yourself standing in Toys R Us, staring at an empty shelf where that “just so perfect” gift used to be. After the initial panic subsided, what did I do? I grabbed my smartphone and went straight to the Internet. Was the item in stock online? Did another location have the item? Did a competitor have one?

Industry Review

Alterian’s Eighth Annual Survey How Engaged Is Your Brand?

Executive Summary
The marketing industry continues to move from mass communication to true personalized engagement with consumers. Social media is gaining ongoing momentum, allowing consumers to hold much more control over their interactions with brands. As marketers begin to embrace this new phenomenon, a true shift is taking place, abandoning what was once broadcasting and welcoming individualized interaction between the consumer and the brand. While simply including a customer’s name in marketing communication signifies some degree of personalization, individualization is far greater. The essence of ultimate engagement, individualization takes into consideration the customer’s preferences, including what they would like to receive, when and in what channel.

Link to Entire Doc (PDF)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Do You Know How to Negotiate?

One of the reasons Americans loved Saturn cars was the “no-haggle” policy — which, to an Indian, is code for “let’s charge these suckers more because they’re afraid of negotiating.”
Have you ever seen one of your friends try to negotiate? It’s so sad it makes me want to cry. Imagine the most timid person getting the courage up to finally ask for something.
Timid weirdo: “Excuse me sir…do you think you might possibly maybe somehow discuss the salary with me? I am thinking –”
Hiring manager: “I’m sorry, it’s a set salary.”
Timid weirdo: “Okay” (head down, internally saying “I shouldn’t have even bothered”)
There is another way.
Here are just a few of the things you can negotiate:
  • Credit card APR
  • Salary (like my friend’s $8,000 salary negotiation)
  • Gym fee
  • Cable fee
  • Cellphone fee
  • Days off from work / work from home on Fridays
  • Complimentary room upgrade at hotels
  • Car insurance

Steve Rubel, SVP, Director of Insights, Edelman Digital

The future of media, the Web and how you communicate your value to the marketplace

Video at Link Below:

Why a Link Analysis is Anything But a Waste of Time

From a Marketing Blog:
Earlier this week, I came across an article by Michael Martinez about why competitive link analysis wastes your time, which could have been inspired by two posts about the same subject that had been published earlier this week. Although I enjoy reading most of the long posts Michael writes, and I agree with some of the points he makes in the article, I absolutely disagree with his headline and conclusion.
In my opinion, starting an online marketing campaign without a competitive link analysis is like starting a company with only half of a marketing plan. You want to be well aware of your surroundings, before you enter a market or start a new project. Sure, there are plenty examples of companies that succeeded without one, but I think that there are over twice that amount of companies that would still exist today, if they had made a thorough plan when they started. “A well prepared man is worth two others”, as a French saying goes.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Identify Web Server and Scripting Technology for Onsite SEO

This is an important article for beginners in onsite search engine optimization. Before you accept any onsite SEO work, it is important that you know how to tweak the site. To be able to do that, you need to know the site's web server and scripting technologies. Does the site use Apache or Microsoft IIS? PHP, ASP, or Java? This article will explain why you need to know this, and how to find out.
Tweaking the site requires some skill with respect to the web server and scripting technologies used. Of course, if you are fully comfortable working with PHP on Apache web servers and have no idea of how to work with ASP.NET on a Windows server, then you should not accept any onsite SEO work for a Microsoft technology-based website.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Creative Uses of the New Facebook Profile

The new Facebook profiles are offering lots of real-estate for clever users to create their own stories through their profile photos. From combating aliens to eating cake, these users are making Facebook their newest canvas.

See what people are up to and share any other profiles you’ve seen in the comments section!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Advice for Job Seekers

The #1 reason to aim for a hidden job

Competition for advertised, non-hidden jobs is tougher as more people fight for a smaller number of openings than what are really available.
Put differently- if you can find a relevant hidden job opening, you will have fewer candidates to compete with for the position.
Sounds tempting, I know.
So where are the hidden jobs?

Read more at:

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Engaging in Social Media

As you plan for the year ahead, it's time to consider how social media will change your company or brand in 2011.

Recently, we (Ant's Eye View) unveiled the Social Engagement Journey.  Our creation of the Journey is based on having worked with some of the world's leading brands and understanding their challenges in becoming a socially engaged organization. We have observed that the Journey encompasses five stages of how the organization is operating internally as well as externally by connecting with customers.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Position Search Journal (1/11/2011)

1.  Updated Resume

2,  Added Company / Location
    Pearson Multimedia
    Glenview, IL

3.  Applied for Position:

The job is marked as being in Glenview, so it may take some effort to sort out detail.

Stephen Bungay Writes in the Harvard Business Review About Managing Your Business Strategy

This article is about how to answer that question. In the following pages you will read about a process I call strategy briefing, a technique derived from the military. Through it, managers and their reports can move together from the uncertainty surrounding seemingly complex goals and performance measures to clarity about just which objectives each person needs to focus on, in what order of priority. The briefing also helps managers set parameters for two variables that are the bedrock of high performance: the extent to which people in an organization act in line with its leaders’ intentions, and how much freedom they have to take independent action. In essence, the briefing turns lofty strategic goals into a clear blueprint for execution.
Link:  How to Make the Most of Your Company’s Strategy

A Great Newsletter (for Business Strategy): McKinsey Quarterly

Thinking about strategy

Do you really have a strategy—crisp thinking about how to concentrate your resources to gain a competitive edge? Or are you stuck with piles of planning documents and amorphous goals? The articles in this package will help you decide.


Interesting Post from SuzeMuze Blog

From time to time, I'll post links to interesting blogs and posts.

Here's one:

How To Make a Movie (or any other creative project) on the Internet

Monday, January 10, 2011

Do You Have Connections Near Lake Forest Illinois

If you can help me get a full time position within 20 miles of Lake Forest, IL by 2/15/2011, you could have $1,000 coming your way.

My Resume is here.

I am looking for positions which require IT / Web Presence / Marketing savvy.

If you are the top person who provides the help to get this position, you win!