Saturday, July 31, 2010

Social Media is set for Google Wave?


Have you tried Google Wave?

It has been around for quite sometime.

It is brought by Google as the name suggests and is known for real time communication and collaboration.

It works like how you would be conversing on a forum; just that Wave has a little more flexibility and navigational support system. So far as i write this post it is not as yet integrated with GMail the way you will find BUZZ. However there are instances where with certain coding this integration is made feasible by some people. Hopefully Google should soon make this integration easily available.

The wave is said to have various attributes and aspects of web chat, email, wikis, instant messaging, social networking, and project management all this as an in-browser communication client.

So? Have you used Google Wave? What is your opinion of this offering?



Friday, July 30, 2010

Social Media and back-links

While working on Social Media it is imperative to have a Link Strategy in mind as well. Links guide the search engine towards your main page / blog / site. Links work as directional road map for the spiders and crawlers. Having said this, we need to be careful and not fall in the link farming trap. The moment we get into this zone the algorithms at search engine start to flag this as they recognize spamming actions.

Additionally you need to be careful on the part from where the links come to your page / site / blog. It is good if they come from a high traffic page. At the same time that page should not have too many links or else again the danger of neutralizing the effect comes in.  Allow me to explain: Lets consider two options. Lets call two pages as 'Page A' and 'Page B' respectively. Page A has high value traffic and too many links. While Page has good traffic not as high as Page A but is healthy traffic and has less than 20 links. When you will submit you link to both Page A and Page B you will notice that the search engine considers the trust value as equal. The reason being that too many links cause the search engine to start looking at spam information. Hence Link farms etc get into negative count.

Add to this you link should be supported by proper copy matter and keywords that point towards your link.

There are many more factors to consider before jumping into the back-link strategy.

Share in your experiences. What is your hands on experience on back-links? What makes it really work and what does not? Join in here.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Social Media - Protect Your Work With Copy Rights

How many times have you felt like posting content on the net which is developed because of your hard earned skill sets? But you have harbored the fear of it being copied? Well coping material with a link back to you is not so much of a concern as against when the copied matter gets owned by some stranger on the net. Am referring to copy right issues. You will have put in your thought, time and energy and created the material.

Copy Right enables protection to a large extent. If you scroll up on my bog you will find the copy right site link.

What do you think of this facility? Is your matter still safe?


Monday, July 19, 2010

Social Media - Get Me 1500 Fans On Facebook

What would you say as a Social Media professionals when you are 'instructed' to "'get 1500 Fans on Facebook'". Well you have two upfront options: one is to decline this task and the other is to take up this task and frantically start searching for our fans / members. Well if you have taken the second option then you may be tempted to join the fan farms [similar to backlink and linklove farms] or maybe you start the scary part - spamming. So you spam on social sites, you start off rantings on forums and all spaces that come under the click of your mouse. And yes you will be counting each member joining in. And probably start to panic when anyone of those hard earned stressing member leaves your Fan Club.

So what would you do? which option would you opt for?

Or would you discuss with your client and check to see the basis of such a request? Am sure there is reasoning to this request. However will a target such as 'get me ...' really suffice and help in achieving the goals?

This leads us onto 3 aspects namely:
Quantity [number of members]
Quality [right members that are relevant to brand]
Engagement Level [level of interaction and involvement]

While it would be great to have a huge Fan base it is necessary that the topics we communicate is relevant to them. It is equally essential to get them dialoguing with us and just not having a one way communication [only from us]. When our communication is engaging only then we can be sure to a large extent to have a desired response. Additionally we should remember that good quality of engagement would lead to a viral effect. Thus automatically leading to increase in membership which is relevant to us and to whom we are relevant and bring value into their lives.

So building a Fan ? Membership base takes time. Takes consistency. Over a period of time yes we could hope to achieve a good and healthy base.

What is your thought on the much wanted huge amount of fan base?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Is Social Media for all industries and brands?

This question is answered when you answer: Where is my target audience?

Social Media Network is a way to connect your brand with it's customer set. It is a tool that enables you to engage with your customers and connect with them. If used with consistency and with good quality content then it could lead to deeper engagement with your customer set.

If your customer can be found on the online space then definitely yes Social Media could be a part of your entire marketing plan. However if your customer does not have net connectivity and / or if they are a certain segment that does not utilize the internet services then naturally you might as well keep Social Media Network out of your business plan.

Hence before you commence with the online marketing plan it is imperative to know your customers. You need to understand the customer behavior and attitude towards the internet.  At the basic level you need to be sure that they have an online life. I repeat 'an online life'. And you also need to understand if their online life really leads to any emotional connect with them. This you could find by using direct and indirect research methods with respect to your actual customer set - not only the ideal customers that we may hope for.

Once this is fixed and you have understood your customer's behavior on the net and attitude towards the various net sites you then can start to look at online marketing via the Social Media way.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Social Media - Oh My God Where Are My Followers!

How many times while working as a Social Media personnel have you received a call asking you why have the number of followers / community members fallen [even if it means one person leaving]. Or to that matter how many times as an individual would you have looked at your follower list and wondered whatever you did or rather did not do created the follower to leave you.

Probably this thinking itself caused our fellow member to go away. The thinking as in: Where are my followers. What i am trying to put across is that thinking of our community member as 'one of the members' or as 'a follower' would be the reason why we may have not really connected with them on a one to one humane basis. Yes Social Media is time consuming not tedious though.

It is time we observe and listen to what our fellow members seek and want and respond to them. It does not take you whole day to do this. We may state that if we have member list running into thousands and more then will we stand to have the quantum of time to enable such a response based behavior. Well allow me to share that not all customers and community members  become active at the same time / simultaneously unless ofcourse there is a crises and that ofcourse would need to be handled on a mass level with humane touch to it. Even crisis management after a period of times needs to be drilled into one to one method.

In short lets attempt to treat our community members as individuals with individual identity and not as mass of receivers who have to be sent some message.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Social Media requires good SEO Management

Social Media needs SEO [Search Engine Optimization] Management. The reason to work on SEO while managing and handling Social Media is so that your brand comes up ahead on the Google and other search engines. This is not paid for and it is known as chronologically high ranking on the search engines. It is similar to Page Rank. The higher your page rank the more plausible is good ranking on search engines.

Though the search engines like Google do not openly disclose their algorithms and the basis of their calculations on how do they rank the page and how does the page come up ahead on the searches there are certain ways of doing this. The reason that the search engines do not disclose the maths behind the page rank is so that it cannot be rigged and genuinely good and healthy pages come up high on the search. This enhances the search engine's credibility. Thus when you work towards a high rank on search engines you need to be consistent in preparing and publishing good healthy pages.

How do you publish good and healthy pages? Below are certain ways and methods of ensuring that your page starts to get ahead on the search engines.

  • First and fore mostly you need to be consistent. This is not a onetime activity. You need to work on this atleast three times a week to ensure that you are preparing pages that are consistent in quality.
  • You need to have fresh content. This means that even if you have a website it needs to be refreshed. Now practically a website cannot really be refreshed thrice a week as there would be more than 5 pages to it and it is humanly not feasible to ensure freshness on this. So what do you do? There are a couple of ways in which this situation could be tackled. One is have a certain potion of the web pages dynamic in nature. Thus new press releases and new matter can be easily fed in via RSS coding. Additionally what you could do is enable a blog to the site. Thus herein you could post information and very relevant topical matter for the visitors. This enables freshness and a reason for your visitor to re-visit your site on a regular basis. This will give your site stickiness as well. Thus ensuring that search engine has fresh matter to index and the number of pages [due to posts] keeps on increasing. 
  • Next you need to ensure that the key words that your visitors would use on the search engines are well populated onto the blogs, websites and social sites. This does not mean that you repeat the key words mindlessly. If you do this then at one level the search engines would define this as SPAM and would block your page. Additionally mindless adding of key words will make your visitor leave your site for good. As when your visitor will read your site your information quality will not be good.
  • The keyword needs to be in all sections like your title, your images saved as, your subtitle, body copy, tags and labels. The keywords are to be intelligently utilized in tabs and sections as well. Instead of writing a section called 'About us' or 'Contact us' you need to be creative to enable the same meaning with keywords inserted. One more part that is crucial is to be remembered that if your business or brand name is not generic to the keywords then please restrain from using it all along. Searchers type generic and direct terms in search engines.
  • Metatags. What are metatags? You will have come across a lot of time on this terminology being used quite frequently. Metatags is form of scripting in programming language. They are code pieces. They enable the search engine robots to crawl and index your page. Again here too we are to remember that they are not to be over stuffed with keywords. There are three types of Metatags. They are Meta title, Meta description and Meta keywords. All three are to have the key words incorporated into them. 
  • What you also need to remember is that the spiders of search engine crawl from left to right of the page. So if your left side of the page has no keywords or has flash with keywords etc then you loose the robots immediately.
  • Next is to submit the pages url to search engines. There are free submission pages that you can utilize. 
  • Once you do this you PING the page to search engines. Pinging in simple terms means to attract search engines to your page.
  • Additionally be careful about page loading. Please enable quick load. 

Ofcourse SEO has more technical side to it however doing the above would ensure some kind of progress on search engines. Do join in here and add your views and information of how to increase SEO while doing Social Media Network.