So we all have heard of the saying work hard and play hard, is what you need to do to live life to the fullest. Or at least have balance in your life. So what do you think this means?
Most people have grown up with an understanding of what it means to work hard. This is something that is demonstrated on a daily basis by people in every field. The online world is no different. In fact if you have products online that can be purchased by potential customers, working hard is really figuring out how to make what your doing more interesting and attractive to your client base.
There are a lot of people that claim to have this knowledge under their hat. The reality is that these techniques are all needed to diversify your marketing. To execute the work can be tedious.
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So there you have it the perfect 1 & 2 punch that will really provide an exciting life. I sincerely hope that this blog, will help those that maybe are hesitant with an opportunity or don't know where to start. Of course, using the Traffic Authority product will help you build up your list no matter what the opportunity. Make sure to check all this out for yourself,.... >>>
Meetings usually involve a lot of wasted time and effort. But Google Glass will make them faster, more efficient and just better.
Even though Google Glass itself doesn't exist as a consumer device available to the public, Glassware (apps for Google Glass) is already emerging that make meetings better. If this is just a hint of things to come, Glass will utterly transform how meetings are conducted.
I've been testing and researching Google Glass and Glass apps for meetings, and I can already see how this new device will make you a better presenter, note-taker, networker and decision-maker.
Presenting with Google GlassOne problem with presenting with slides is that the notes that go with those slides force you to take your attention away from the audience. You find yourself reading as a performance art, and it can be hard to do.
Building a Case for Mobile Apps
A new Google Glass app called YourShow from a startup called PajamaNinja shows your presentation notes in the Glass viewer, with a thumbnail of the current slide.
It works with Google Docs' Presentation, and it's brain-dead simple to use. From the PajamaNinja web site, you simply connect to your Google Drive account. It shows you your presentations. You pick one. And now that presentation is in your Glass.
YourShow enables you to walk around during your presentation, interact with the audience, never look down to read -- yet always have your notes in front of you like tiny teleprompter.
The company says they're working on better ways to advance through your slide notes, including voice recognition (Glass will listen to you talk to figure out which slide you should be on); specific voice commands for slide control (“Next slide”); and a subtle head gesture for slide control.
They're also working on a feature whereby your voice and slides are recorded as you give your presentation, which can be shared as a video. They also want to be able to broadcast the presentation live from Glass.
One of the most mind-blowing features is that YourShow should in the future be able to do real-time translation, putting foreign-language subtitles of everything you say on your slides, enabling you to present to audiences that don’t speak English.
Taking Notes with Google GlassGoogle announced this week a new feature that captures your words and transcribes them into notes. Just say: "Take a note," then whatever you say after that will be posted in your personal Evernoteaccount, and will include both the audio recording and the searchable transcription of what you said.
Later, Google will almost certainly enable you to save your note in Google Keep, send it to email or some other location.
Google Glass will understand anyone's voice, so you can use the "Take a note" before a presenter speaks to capture what they say. Your notes take themselves while you pay attention to the speaker.
Of course, it's often inappropriate to talk to your eyewear during meetings. But you can take pictures of the slides by pressing the shutter button or capture a video of the speaker by pressing and holding it for a second.
By sending the pictures of slides or whiteboards to Evernote, the actual words on the screen or board will later be keyword-searchable.
Reading Private Talking Points with Google GlassIt's best to approach meetings with clear objectives -- either points you want to get across to the group or items you want to make sure get covered. Because people tend to sit in meetings around a table, shoulder to shoulder, it's easy for the people next to you to see your talking points.
By putting your notes in Google Glass, you can read these notes privately, even at a crowded conference table.
One option is a Chrome extension called Send to Glass. By copying any words, clicking on the extension’s browser button, then pasting those words into the box that pops up, you can instantly send them to Glass. (You can also just type in any words.)
Once they appear in your Glass viewer, you can read the words or tap to have Glass read them to you. (Because Glass uses bone conduction instead of regular speakers, others in the meeting are unlikely to hear it.) You can also use Send to Glass to send pictures.
Note that you can also use Send to Glass to be able to remember people and pronounce their names -- just send their photos and names alternatively. If you find yourself in a situation where you should remember their name, just swipe through the faces and get the right name.
Getting Instant Feedback With Google GlassSometimes you're in a meeting and the group decides to get feedback from people outside the meeting. Normally, you would add the action item to gather that input for a later meeting.
For the past few years, Sundar Pichai has been part of a tag-team routine staged at Google’s annual I/O developer conference. Pichai, a Googler since 2004, would present on behalf of Google’s Chrome division, including its browser and cloud-based operating system. His counterpart was Andy Rubin, head of Google’s Android division. As Android grew to the world’s most popular mobile OS (it’s now on 750 million devices worldwide, with 1.5 million new activations every day), people wondered what was the sense of Google having two operating systems. Meanwhile, Andy Rubin was the unofficial king of I/O.
That won’t be the case this year. In March, Google announced Rubin was stepping down from Android to pursue unspecified moon shots elsewhere in the company. Pichai would take over Rubin’s duties at Android. He immediately went from being an important Google executive (in addition to Chrome, he was also in charge of Google’s apps efforts) to perhaps the most pivotal member of Larry Page’s “L-team” of top executives. So far Pichai, a 40-year old grad of the fabled Indian Institute of Technology and later Stanford, has kept his head down and refused all press. But as this week’s I/O event approached, he granted WIRED his first interview since taking over Android.
WIRED: The Android handover from Andy Rubin to you seemed sudden and mysterious to us on the outside. Was it long in the works?
PICHAI: I got to know only towards the end of the process of Andy deciding to step back. It played out in a rapid time fashion over the couple weeks prior to the actual announcement. I am passionate about computing and so to me, it was very exciting to be in a position where I could make an impact on that scale.
Now that you’re in this new position, have your views evolved in terms of the coexistence of Chrome and Android?
I don’t think my views have changed much. Android and Chrome are both large, open platforms, growing very fast. I think that they will play a strong role, not merely exist. I see this as part of friendly innovation and choice for both users and developers.
But can’t it be confusing having two operating systems?
Users care about applications and services they use, not operating systems. Very few people will ask you, “Hey, how come MacBooks are on Mac OS-X and iPhone and iPad are on iOS? Why is this?” They think of Apple as iTunes, iCloud, iPhoto. Developers are people, too. They want to write applications one time, but they also want choice. What excites me in this new role is that I can try do the right thing for users and developers — without worrying about the fact that we have two things. We embrace both and we are continuing to invest in both. So in the short run, nothing changes. In the long run, computing itself will dictate the changes. We’re living through a pivotal moment. It’s a world of multiple screens, smart displays, with tons of low-cost computing, with big sensors built into devices. At Google we ask how to bring together something seamless and beautiful and intuitive across all these screens. The picture may look different a year or two from from now, but in the short term, we have Android and we have Chrome, and we are not changing course.
Still, it’s a huge use of resources to have two operating systems as opposed to one. This has to be an issue you wrestle with.
It’s a fair question. We want to do the right things at each stage, for users and developers. We are trying to find commonalities. On the browser layer, we share a lot of stuff. We will increasingly do more things like that. And maybe there’s a more synergistic answer down the line.
As Android’s new head, what do you see as the biggest challenge?
First let me talk about the opportunities. The scale and scope is even bigger than what I had internalized. The momentum — in terms of new phones and new tablets — is breathtaking. I see huge opportunity, because it is just shocking how much of the world doesn’t have access to computing. In his book Eric [Schmidt] talks about the next 5 billion [the people on earth who aren’t connected to the internet who soon will be]. That’s genuinely true and it excites me. One of the great things about an open system like Android is it addresses all ends of the spectrum. Getting great low-cost computing devices at scale to the developing world is especially meaningful to me.
Now what about the challenges?
Here’s the challenge: without changing the open nature of Android, how do we help improve the whole world’s end-user experience? For all your users, no matter where they are, or what phone or tablet they are buying or what tablet they are buying.
What does that mean when a company like Facebook comes out with Home, which changes that experience?
It’s exciting that Facebook thought of Android first in this case. Android was intended to be very customizable. And we welcome innovations. As for the specific product, my personal take on it is that time will tell. To Mark [Zuckerberg], people are the center of everything. I take a slightly different approach. I think life is multifaceted: people are a huge part of it, but not the center and be-all of everything.
Some people worry that Google might respond to Facebook Home by blocking this kind of approach in a future release.
We want to be a very, very open platform, but we want a way by which end users are getting a good experience overall. We have to figure out a way to rationalize things, and do it so that it makes sense for users and developers. There’s always a balance there. It’s no different from the kind of decisions that Facebook has to make about its own platform. But right now, we don’t plan to make any changes — we are excited they’ve done good work.
Hold on. You’re saying that you like innovation like Home–but at some point in the future you might decide that an invasive software approach like this isn’t good for users and can’t be done in a future Android release?
No. Let me clarify. Users get to decide what apps and what choices they want. Some users really want this. We don’t want to get in the way of that. [But] in the end, we have to provide a consistent experience. As part of that, with every release of Android, we do go through changes. So we may make changes over time. But if this is what users want, I think Facebook will be able to do it. We want it to be possible for users to get what they want.
What about something more drastic like Kindle Fire, which actually forks the Android experience into something quite different?
Under the rules of the license, Amazon can do that. In general, we at Google would love everyone to work on one version of Android, because I think it benefits everyone better. But this is not the kind of stuff we’re trying to prevent. Our focus is not on Facebook Home or Kindle Fire. Computing is going through a once in a lifetime explosion. Our opportunity is making sure that this works well for people and solves important problems for them. For example, you are going to have computing which can potentially warn you before you have a heart attack.
Is it a problem for Google that Samsung is so dominant, and makes almost all the money on the platform?
I realize this gets played up in the press a lot. Samsung is a great partner to work with. We work with them on pretty much almost all our important products. Here’s my Samsung Galaxy S4. [Pichai holds up the phone.]
How’s that eye-tracking thing working out?
I actually never used it. Look, Samsung plays a critical role in helping Android be successful. To ship great experiences, you need hardware and software together. The relationship is very strong on a day-to-day basis and on a tactical basis. So I’m not that concerned. Historically the industry has had long stable structures. Look at Microsoft and Intel. They were very codependent on one another, but it served both of them well. When I look at where computing needs to go, we need innovation in displays, in batteries. Samsung is a world leader in those technologies.
One benefit of Samsung being so dominant is that you don’t hear much concern that Google might show favoritism to Motorola, which it now owns.
For the purposes of the Android ecosystem, Motorola is [just another] partner.
What’s the future of Google-branded hardware?
You will see a continuation of what we have tried to do with Nexus and Chromebooks. Any hardware projects we do will be to push the ecosystem forward.
One reason that people think that Chrome might step back in favor of Android is that the Open Web might not be able to deliver what users need on their devices. As head of Chrome you have promoted the vision of cloud-based apps, based on technologies like HTML 5, saying that they will be as powerful and fast as native apps written to run directly on specific machines. But last year Mark Zuckerberg said that Facebook’s biggest mistake was trying to use HTML 5 and the open web for its mobile apps. He said it simply didn’t have the quality and speed to serve his users. Was that a blow to your vision of Chrome?
I think the reality is a bit different. I managed Chrome and apps even before Android. Some of our large applications are now written directly to the device — for instance, we have native Gmail apps. But I disagree with the opinion that all of Facebook’s mobile issues can be blamed on HTML 5. I just don’t think that was true. There are other companies with very successful apps that have taken an HTML 5 approach on mobile and done really well. For instance, a lot of magazines have switched from native back to HTML 5 for the mobile apps. Financial Times did it, and they’ve blogged that their user engagement and traction has increased significantly. It’s the reverse of what Facebook said. And this is the beauty. Each developer’s needs are unique.
In terms of numbers, Android sells more than Apple, but Apple makes more money from its platform. Is your mandate to generate more revenue from Android?
We’re very comfortable with our business model. All our core services–Search YouTube, Maps, etc.– are used on phones, and Android helps people to use those services. So fundamentally there’s a business model there. And services, like Google Play, are obviously a source of revenue. We saw payouts to developers on Play quadruple in 2012. I think we are barely beginning to get started. We’re in the early beginnings of a sea change in computing. Think about education and enterprise — incredible opportunities. We’re much more focused now on the consumer end of the experience, but we think the right things will happen from a business sense.
Were you surprised to see a Firefox OS?
Not at all. The web is an important platform, and I don’t think it’s going change ’til I die. It’s another reason why if we don’t do Chrome OS, someone else will.
A lot of people have complained about Android’s update process. How does Google make sure that people will get updated with the latest version?
We are thinking about how to make Android handle updates better. We see ways we can do this. It’s early days. We’re talking with our partners and working our way through it. We need time to figure out the mechanics, but it’s definitely an area of focus for me and for the team.
What can we expect from I/O this year?
It’s going to be different. It’s not a time when we have much in the way of launches of new products or a new operating system. Both on Android and Chrome, we’re going to focus this I/O on all of the kinds of things we’re doing for developers, so that they can write better things. We will show how Google services are doing amazing things on top of these two platforms.
As Android head, what are your marching orders from Larry Page?
Larry wants to make sure we are driving innovation and doing amazing things for users and developers. That’s what I want too. So there’s a melding of minds– his marching orders are, “Please go and do Google-scale things.”
Finally, you had a pretty full plate with Chrome and Apps, and now you’re handling the world’s biggest phone platform in addition. How are you managing?
I have a secret project which adds four hours every day to the 24 hours we have. There’s a bit of time travel involved.
Facebook's major announcement really amounts to one thing: The social network is using the search giant's own platform against it.
FORTUNE -- The last time Google and Facebook had a chance to make friends was October 2007, when the two companies discussed an advertising alliance. Ultimately, Facebook snubbed Google in favor of archrival Microsoft.
It's all been downhill since then. As Facebook (FB) grew to become an Internet superpower, it liberally poached engineers, salespeople and executives from Google (GOOG). Time and again two companies fought over advertisers and squared off on privacy, with Facebook even orchestrating a secret smear campaign against Google. Google fought back, paying astronomical sums to retain its talent, and most notably, spending billions to develop Google+, a Facebook rival. More recently, Facebook has sought to encroach into Google's multi-billion search franchise.
Now, Facebook is taking aim at another of Google's crown jewels, the open-source Android operating system for mobile devices. With a new app called Home, Facebook is putting itself front and center on popular mobile phones, pushing Google's prized services--like search, maps and Gmail--into the background. As my colleague Jessi Hempel recently put it to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's CEO, "I have to imagine that when Google developed Android as an open platform, they didn't mean for Facebook to do this."
Zuckerberg said he was not sure how they're going to react. Then, he suggested Home could help Android devices to differentiate themselves from Apple's (AAPL) iPhone, especially among consumers who want high-end phones. In other words, this could be good for Google. (Google declined to comment.)
MORE: 5 billionaires who want to live forever
In the short-term, Zuck is right. Any boost for Android is good for Google, which makes most of its revenue on mobile devices from ads in search results, Web pages and apps.
But over time, if the "Facebook phone" succeeds, Google could suffer. Like it's rivals, Apple and Amazon (AMZN), Google wants you to live in a Google world. The more Google services you use--search and Gmail, Maps and Drive, Play and Plus--the more likely you are to stay loyal to Google, to choose Android next time you purchase a phone or a tablet. You might even buy aChromebook, since all Google's services work like magic on it. The deeper you dive into Google's ecosystem, the higher the switching costs to Apple and its iCloud service or to the world of Amazon Prime, Amazon music and video.
If Facebook usurps the lead role on Android phones, taking over social interactions, messaging and photo sharing, then the value of a new Android device to Google will be lower. Its grip on the Android customer will weaken. Further, if Facebook figures out how to use its central position on Android devices to expand its advertising platform on mobile phones--perhaps even to the point that it can use ad revenue to help subsidize phone purchases--its gains would be undoubtedly at Google's expense.
"In the near term, the impact on Google will be small," says Charles Golvin, an analyst with Forrester Research (FORR). "But it does portend a richer form of competition in the future. If Facebook is successful in changing the paradigm and changing the way people search, discover, buy and encounter advertising, that would have a negative impact on Google."
Facebook is not the first Google rival to use Android for its own gain. Amazon, with the Kindle Fire, also markets an Android device on which Google is very much in the background. There are scores of Android app stores in the U.S. and overseas that rival Google Play. And even Google ally Samsung, has not only made tweaks to the user interface of its Android phones but also offered cloud storage services to rival Google's. It's all part of the risk and reward of running open ecosystem in a hyper-competitive mobile world.
Updated 10:15 a.m. ET: The executive most widely tipped to be the next chief executive of Microsoft Corp has left the world's largest software maker barely two weeks after launching the flagship Windows 8, as CEO Steve Ballmer moved to tighten his grip on the company.
The exit of 23-year veteran Steven Sinofsky, head of Microsoft's Windows unit, is the latest - and most prominent - in a line of high-profile departures from the Redmond, Washington-based company, which is struggling to keep pace with Apple Inc and Google Inc in mobile computing.
It comes hard on the heels of Sinofsky unveiling the most radical revamp of Windows since 1995, designed to catapult Microsoft back into the forefront of Internet-based, touch-screen technology and reinvigorate a stock price that has been static for the past decade.
The move was unexpected and neither Microsoft nor Sinofsky gave an explanation, although an executive at the company, who asked not to be named, said the decision was "mutual" and said he was not expecting Sinofsky to take a job at another company soon.
"This is shocking news. This is very surprising," said Brendan Barnicle, an analyst at Pacific Crest Securities. "Like a lot of people, I thought Sinofsky was in line to potentially be Ballmer's successor."
Sinofsky, 47, joined Microsoft in 1989 and made his mark as Bill Gates' technical assistant. He grew into an uncompromising leader whose ruthless style of cutting layers of management and formalizing the process of software development gave rise to the term "Sinofskyization" in the company.
He wielded immense power as head of the Windows unit, the traditional center of Microsoft's business, but was not known for working well with other executives.
One former Microsoft staffer who worked with Sinofsky and other executives said his relentlessly aggressive style exasperated other leaders and may have alienated too many people, including his mentor Gates.
"He had no one left to fight for him," said the staffer, who asked not to be named. "Gates gave him cover, so he must have eventually caved."
Ballmer, 56, shows no sign of leaving after almost 13 years in the job, despite almost constant criticism. He has now replaced all the leaders of Microsoft's five main operating units in the past four years.
He told employees in a memo on Monday simply that: "Steven Sinofsky has decided to leave the company."
In a later media statement, he added that it was "imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all Microsoft teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for our offerings".
That could be interpreted as disappointment in Sinofsky's ability, or willingness, to work with other units.
"Windows has to be much more thoroughly integrated with Xbox, with other parts of the company," said Barnicle. "I don't know that was something Steven was as excited about as focusing on Windows."
It could also suggest that Ballmer was not happy with the pace of progress under Sinofsky.
"Within Microsoft's lead cycle, Sinofsky was delivering at the early edge of it," said Colin Gillis, an analyst at BGC Financial. "But now the competition has moved from a one-year cycle to a six-months cycle."
Sinofsky had a stellar career at Microsoft, overhauling the hugely profitable Office division before going over to manage the release of Windows 7 in 2009.
That was regarded as a success and Sinofsky was then tasked with overseeing Windows 8, Microsoft's new-look, touch-friendly operating system designed to bridge the gap with mobile computing leaders Apple and Google.
At the same time, Sinofsky led the development of Microsoft's Surface tablet, its first own-brand computer, aimed at tackling Apple's wildly successful iPad head on.
Analysts said it may be too early to judge whether Windows 8 and the Surface have been a success, after launching on October 26, but Sinofsky's departure could have been tied to his abrasive management and ambition for the top job.
"It sounded like it had more to do with his leadership style," said Barnicle at Pacific Crest. "There wasn't really a next move for Steven at this point."
Sinofsky forfeited some of his bonus this year due to falling sales of Windows and Microsoft's embarrassing failure to comply with an agreement with European regulators to allow users a choice of browsers, which could cost the company millions of dollars in fines.
Sinofsky himself shed no light on his exit.
"It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at Microsoft," he said in a statement. "I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company."
He did not announce any plans to take a job elsewhere.
Sinofsky will be succeeded by Julie Larson-Green, who will head the Windows hardware and software division, and Tami Reller, who will remain chief financial officer of the Windows unit. Together, they will report directly to Ballmer.
Sinofsky's departure comes two weeks after rival Apple shook up its own top management, forcing out mobile head Scott Forstall and retail chief John Browett.
One analyst cited talk that the moves might be related.
"Some are speculating that the availability on the market of Forstall might have something to do with Sinofsky's departure," said Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi. "I doubt we will have to wait long to know if this is the case."
98% of Small-Business Websites Are Not Mobile Optimized, According to vSplash’s SMB DigitalScape Study
SMBs are missing out on digital commerce opportunities due to deficiencies in key online and mobile presence features and functionality.
Small and medium-sized businesses are not equipped to capitalize on the growing mobile commerce opportunity being driven by consumer mobile usage and smartphone proliferation. According to the Q2 update of vSplash’s ongoing SMB DigitalScape study, 98 percent of SMB websites are not mobile optimized.
“Some experts are predicting smartphones and tablets will account for around one-third of all website visits this coming holiday shopping season,” said Umesh Tibrewal, CEO, vSplash. “According to our current data, nearly all SMBs will be challenged to capitalize on this mobile commerce opportunity due to their incompatible websites.”
SMB DigitalScape is a powerful data collection and analysis engine that gauges the state of SMB digital media and commerce. Other findings from the SMB DigitalScape Q2 update include:
Updated quarterly, SMB DigitalScape’s empirical data are derived from a growing sample of over 2 million SMB websites. Since the Q1 release earlier this year, the number of business listings analyzed has grown from 4 million to 10 million, and the number of parameters analyzed for each business has increased from 100 to 110.
Findings from the SMB DigitalScape Q2 update will be presented at upcoming industry events in the U.S., Europe and Asia, beginning today with a presentation at BIA/Kelsey’s SMB Digital Marketing 2012 conference in Chicago. Additional findings will be presented on Sept. 21 by vSplash Advisor Neal Polachek to European directory publishers and local search providers at the EASDP Annual Congress, in Toledo, Spain. Polachek will also present the data to local search and media executives at the ADPAI Annual Conference, Nov. 5-6, in Bangkok.
vSplash is also a sponsor of this week’s SMB Digital Marketing 2012 event, where it will showcase BuzzBoard, its next-generation digital marketing sales tool. BuzzBoard integrates listings level data from SMB DigitalScape to help digital marketing sales reps pinpoint new business opportunities. Available online for inside sales reps and on iPad for outside sales reps, BuzzBoard automates prospect research, needs assessment and proposal generation, significantly shortening sales cycles.
SMB DigitalScape U.S. quarterly updates and custom data reports are available through vSplash data partner BIA/Kelsey. For information on how to purchase the reports, visit http://www.biakelsey.com/Research-and-Forecasts/SMB-DigitalScape.
About vSplash (http://www.vSplash.com)
Based in Lyndhurst, New Jersey, vSplash is a leading global provider of digital media and commerce solutions to SMB and local marketing aggregators. Using its trusted market data and analytics, vSplash identifies actual SMB needs, which represent real revenue opportunities for its partners. vSplash helps its partners capitalize on market opportunities by delivering scalable Web-based marketing, advertising, directory, commerce and fulfillment solutions for corporations, educational institutions and governments worldwide. vSplash leverages global resources and expertise deployed around the world to produce more than 10,000 forms of digital media each month. Follow vSplash on Twitter at http://twitter.com/vSplashTechlabs and on Facebook athttps://www.facebook.com/vSplashTechlabs.
Most people misunderstand the benefits of social media.
It’s not about “embracing your audience”, “joining the conversation” or “being authentic”.
For businesses, social media is much more valuable.
When you do it right, the potential is limitless.
The Tim Ferriss EffectForbes columnist Michael Ellsberg recently wrote an article about the Tim Ferriss Effect, and the surprising strength of single-author blogs with passionate audiences.
(For those who don’t know, Tim Ferriss is the widely successful author of the Four Hour Work Week, and Four Hour Body, as well as an entrepreneur and angel investor.)
Michael witnessed this effect first-hand. While promoting his recent book, Michael did all types of PR and interviews to try and push book sales.
He appeared on primetime CNN, had an article in the New York Times Sunday edition, and published a guest post on Tim Ferriss’s popular blog.
Guess which performed best?
When the guest post on Tim Ferriss’s blog went live, it shot Michael’s book up the charts to #45 on the Amazon Bestsellers list.
That single guest post had the largest direct impact on Michael’s books sales. Bigger than an interview on CNN, and bigger than a story on the New York Times.
How does that make sense?
Examining the Halo EffectThe Halo Effect is a real, cognitive bias that explains why people becomestar-struck.
The Halo Effect says that physically attractive people are automatically assumed to be smarter, happier, and more successful than their average peers.
Apple benefits from the Halo Effect because people love their products.
If Oprah recommended a book to her passionate audience, then it would immediately make the New York Times Best Sellers list.
The “Oprah Effect” was coined years ago because of her amazing ability to make a “hit” product simply by recommending it to her audience.
And now, that effect is being passed down to individual, influential bloggers.
This has a profound impact on how we understand digital marketing.
It should also show you exactly how important social media is for business.
Public Relations 2.0: New and ImprovedWhat is the ROI of social media?
I don’t know… but it’s a hell of a lot better than traditional public relations.
It doesn’t matter if you reach a million people through CNN if none of them take action.
Michael and other authors have learned first-hand that the strength of a single-author blog community is incredibly powerful.
It’s like a mini Oprah Effect. The blog’s readership completely trusts the author, so they don’t hesitate to buy. Getting people to take action and buy something is much easier when people are already interested.
The problem with traditional PR is that the world today is too fragmented. People simply have too many choices.
Our attention is fragmented, so we only pay attention to the things we absolutely love.
In the past, it didn’t matter that these mass-media response rates were so small. You were able to reach enough people, so it was eventually worth it. But that’s not true anymore.
When there was only network TV and AM/FM radio, traditional advertising and PR worked really well. But now there’s thousands of TV channels and plenty of different options to listen to music. These channels have become fragmented. So you’re reaching less people, but still paying high premiums to reach them.
Instead of reaching a lot of people who barely take action, it’s a lot smarter to target smaller, passionate audiences that will convert at a higher percentage.
Getting people to take action online is much easier. The Call-To-Action brings you directly to the point of purchase. If you give an interview on CNN, then people will have to remember the name of the book and hunt it down at a local store or buy it when they’re in front of their computer.
That time difference kills action. People become distracted, or simply forget. And then they move on.
So the response rate of Social Relations is much better than Public Relations. That means more money, faster.
Here’s how that works…
How Social Media Really WorksEvery business has two key marketing metrics that have a huge impact on their ability to generate a profit.
And in a world where the prices of everything are being driven down by competition and technology, the lifetime value of a customer becomes incredibly important.
It may cost you more to acquire a customer than when they make a single purchase. But you can grow a thriving business on tiny revenues throughscalable repeat purchases.
Social media dramatically lowers the cost of customer acquisition, and increases the lifetime value of a customer exponentially.
That’s how good social media marketing really works. You invest indirectly in building a marketing asset (a blog) that will grow in value over time (as more content is added and relationships are made).
It also has the added bonus of being inherently viral, which means that when you reach a certain point, your customers will do your marketing for you. Each new customer will bring one or two customers of their own, simply through recommendations.
That gives you scale.
Scale lets you escape the problems you face in advertising. For example, when you acquire customers through advertising, you have to spend a certain amount, to get a little more back.
You inevitably get caught in a fixed ratio. So you have to spend $5 on advertising to bring in $10 of revenue. When you try to scale that into large numbers, you have to spend a significant amount to bring in each new customer.
Social media helps you scale your reach and frequency, while avoiding a fixed return for investment.
But that’s not all.
Evoking an emotional response from people is what makes them stick around. And it’s why they buy.
One of the biggest advantages of social media is that it allows you to have a two-way discussion with people. This helps you to create a bond, and makes sure they remain happy customers. Social media is the new CRM.
Getting happy customers to stick around longer will also help you get them to buy more often, drastically improving the lifetime value of each customer. And that goes straight to the bottom line. It’s like free money, because you don’t have to spend anymore time or money to “sell” them again.
All of this sounds great, right?
But there’s a catch…
It won’t work like this for everyone.
The Secret to Making Social Media WorkIf you want to be wildly successful in social media, then you have to play for the long-term.
That means trying to build friendly relationships with bloggers, not pitching them.
That means slowly growing an authentic fan base, not buying Fans and Followers.
That means building a high-quality email list, not buying bulk-spam lists.
That means acting like a farmer, instead of a hunter.
You have to plant your seeds, and tend to them over time. You have to be methodical, strategic, and consistent.
You can’t go out looking for the big kill everyday, praying for that instant gratification.
Before Michael was able to guest post on Tim’s influential blog, he’d actually known Tim for close to 10 years. He didn’t pitch him or send him a cold email. He developed a relationship over time, never asking for something in return. But when the time came, he was easily able to ask Tim for a favor.
And that favor paid off handsomely.
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