A number of months ago my friend Shari Weiss (an online friend) requested an interview, I said sure! Our schedules weren’t lining up to well for a short while but the interview finally took place, and I am going to share it with you here.
Shari is a Social Media Maven if you will, she teaches this misunderstood arena, there’s so much we don’t understand about this space. I actually met Shari on FriendFeed a few years ago, we got connected through a chat with Robert Scoble, and we have been chatting regularly since that squable.
Shari can also be found on LinkedIn she loves to discuss Social Media at length, be sure to ask her about her group as well, and tell her Owen sent you there.
I hope you enjoy and learn something from the interview, more importantly, I want you to think. Here is the link to Shari’s website where you can read the entire interview, enjoy:
Join me on a journey down the Social Media Revolutionary Road
The Internet world new this day was coming, Apple was going to make this huge announcement that was going to revolutionize how we use the Internet. Everyone who is anyone in the technology sector has been talking about this for weeks, and the day has come and it will soon be gone. You will read thousands upon thousands of new articles, Blog Posts and Video’s on this new thing called the iPad. It’s priced at $499.00 USD, screen size is 9.7″ and so on, if you have an iPhone you probably won’t want one of this slick machines. In fact, it looks just like a biggie sized iPhone!
Leo LaPorte said that he has never seen so many people at an Apple Announcement, everyone was there were his words. That’s not entirely true because I wasn’t there! I was there via the Internet and I thought I would share with you how these events will be attended in the future.
I sat here in my home office, openned my browser (FireFox), brought up Leo laporte’s Live.Twit.tv and watched Leo’s version of the event via his show. I also had FriendFeed open and watched Robert Scoble’s Stream, plus, Robert did a live UStream.tv stream at the same time! I got everything I need by following the #iPad & #AppleLive HASH on Twitter as well, I am fully informed.
I expect in the future this is how many people will attend Conferences and major announcements, why pay for parking, hotel and so on when you can get LIVE coverage via the NET? I recognize it’s not the same thing as being there, but it’s far more cost effective. I am however, very disappointed that the broadcast of the event by Apple or lack of one was so poor in quality. They have more cash than Microsoft does, they can afford to stream this better, or maybe the CLOUD can’t handle the load? What will happen when more than 10% of the world gets online for FREE?
How did you watch the Apple Event?
After almost two years of blogging and learning the ropes so to speak, I have come down to three core traffic builders that have worked for me here on my Blog. Let me state up front, Blogging is not easy, getting traffic through free (not buying traffic) methods still costs you something in time. In fact, all three of these Core Traffic Drivers require planning and time.
Before I get into my big three, one thing you should do is study the traffic you already have, look for when they are coming to your Blog, time of day and which days of the week. That will help you determine a good posting schedule, which days to post and what time of day to do so. The busiest times on this blog are between 5PM – Midnight Pacific Time, so I post a few hours before 5 PM, I may do a late night post around 10 PM too. I can only share with you what I have done, I use WordPress with Headway Themes,(affiliate link) it has great SEO support within the theme, so I highly recommend it. The big 3 have sub-sets of things you will have to do as well, nothing is truly simple.
OK, let me share with you the 3 core traffic drivers that are working for me.
3 Core Traffic Drivers
1.) Social Media Networks – I have to tell you this is where most of my traffic comes from, not because I’m there, but because I’m always there and you will see me participating with a few people. Thats the hot tip with this Core Driver, openning up an account and then hoping it will just happen will fail you time & time again. Now I realize not all of you will have the same amount of time I invested in Social Media Networks so bare with me for a bit. When I started using these networks I learned alot about what not to do, I’m not going to get into those things in this post but may do so at a later time. In fact, I did write a post here on Owen Greaves Consulting called, ” 10 Days To a 1000 Followers ” , this tells of how I started with Twitter.
One of the key secrets to using these networks is to centralize, make your Blog your home base. Use plug-ins to send your blog posts to your out-posts. Out-posts are these networks, FriendFeed, FaceBook, Twitter, MySpace and so on, there are so many of them out there I won’t list how many I use.
The best way to use these networks is to promote other people, promote other peoples products 9 times out of ten, promote your site, products and services at a 1 in 10 or 1 in 12 ratio. Edify others always, help others always,and build powerful relationships with those who are likeminded with you and your blog. Share, Share and share information you find useful for others, things that are interesting and helpful, information that teaches and directs. You need to become a TRUST AGENT,(affiliate link) someone who connects with others and connects business with others, make a positive impact on society. Maximize Social Media Networks, it’s word of mouth that can put you on the map or take you off it.
2.) Consistant Blog Posting – There’s not much to say on this topic because it plain works, post regularly to your blog and the search engines go nuts! This means a couple things, I won’t go into detail but there are a couple of other things you need to pay attention to while here.
a) SEO – I’m not especially strong on this topic but I have learned how to make it work for me. There is a science here that baffles most people, it can be learned so expect to spend some time here. You may need to get help, so don’t feel bad if you don’t grasp it.
b) Study your sites traffic numbers for the purposes of scheduling your regular blog posting strategies.
I have found that posting to your blog regularly builds traffic better than anything, especially if your posts are teaching something of value. This post will be useful to many and should generate considerable traffic, why, because everyone, and I mean everyone is trying to find the silver bullet to getting traffic to their blog.
Again, I won’t go into details on SEO & traffic numbers but they are important. My secret weapon is Headway Themes. (affiliate link)
3.) Commenting on other Blogs /Forums – I fought this hard for along time, I just didn’t want to spend time on other blogs, it felt like I was wasting time. I was WRONG! I think this item is a true weapon for Bloggers, especially high profile blogs & forums that have large followings. I mentioned earlier that this traffic thing takes time, lots of time, and lots of your time.
So what do you do at these Blogs & forums? Answer questions, help those looking for answers, ask a question you need answered, promote someone else’s product or service, strongly disagree on a post, you will get noticed for sure. I can’t stress enough how good this works, I challenge you to spend some time on this and see what happens.
So there ya have it, 3 Core Traffic Drivers that I do and have been working for me, I have not paid for any traffic, I have paid for Affiliate products which you will find in this post and on my blog. Someday I’ll spend money for traffic, but I haven’t as of this writing.
I hope these help you, I’m here helping you make sense of Social Media, Blogging and I.T. Strategies, let me know how it goes for you, please leave comments and suggestions below, I really would love to hear what’s working for you.
Do find yourself sitting at the computer for hours on end chatting, writing, posting, researching and or just surfing the NET? It has occurred to me that I spend roughly 10 – 12 hours a day here online, I like to believe I’m actually getting something done or helping someone with whatever challenge they might be having. What is it that makes me want to be here for you hour after hour. I mean, there are so many things I could be doing but no, I sit here and indulge in my passion. Is this smart or am I missing something?
I spend most of my time on my Blog, then I spend considerable time in Twitter Search, Twitter itself, FriendFeed and it’s Search, FaceBook has been getting more of my time lately with it’s efforts to be more like FriendFeed. If I had to choose one over the other, I would have to say Twitter is the most appealing for me because it’s as Real-Time as you can get. So that got me to wondering, just because a Social Media Network has 50 million or 300 million user accounts doesn’t really mean it’s the favorite or the best does it? You see I’m addicted to Real-Time, therefore I’m online looking for information of value, most of it is more than 24 hours old, but the juicy stuff is current as seconds ago. I use Google Reader to track RSS Subscriptions but Twitter is faster to me, and I get information as it happens for the most part there.
So, if you could only pick one Social Media Network, which one would you pick? As much as it pains me I would have to pick Twitter as of this writing, FriendFeed has been my choice but for effectiveness and real-time information Twitter is it for me today.
I want to hear from you, leave your answer in the comments area below please.
What’s your favorite Social Media Network & why?
If I was in Real Estate Today, the very first thing I would do is identify my PURPOSE, the why I think I should be using Social Media Networks. This would appear obvious but it can be misleading, if you don’t believe Social Media will increase revenue, help build a stronger market share and develop community around your brand, your right, the strategy will be an exercise in futility. If you do, get to work and build a plan.
Get started by doing the following:
- List requirements needed to implement strategy
- Key Result Areas – What are they
- Discern objectives
- Identify Key Success Factors
- List Core Competencies
- Complete a S.W.O.T. Analysis, a plan needs to be well thought out.
Once you’ve completed the above get the following action items flushed out and then make it happen.
- Setup accounts on multiple Social Media Networks and get active, participate, get involved in the communities…then….listen to what is being said, what is happening and where it’s being said. Never stop listening, never stop having a presence in these communities. People come back to things and places that are useful to them. Especially if you can help them.
- Use all SM Networks like Twitter, FriendFeed, YouTube, Viddler, Tumblr, FaceBook, StumbleUpon, Digg, Del.icio.us, Technorati, MySpace, LinkedIn, Seesmic, UStream.tv, and BlogTalkRadio. There are many more.
- Blogging is a must, convert or add a Blog to an existing website, this is where you build community and give customers a place to go and something to do.
- Take advantage of video, do LIVE open house events streamed via UStream.tv or one of the other web broadcasting services. Record those events and archive them, build a library, make them available to anyone to view at their leisure. These video’s can also be training or teaching prospects on what questions to ask, how to and so on.
- Do a live web radio show, field questions on a live video show that has Twitter embedded so it’s real-time.
- Do video interviews, record testimonials…etc.
- Sponsor or Host a major Social Media Event, these events charge for attendance and should not only cover expenses but should realize a profit. Bring in people who are actually doing or using Social Media at a high level, not just lip service.
- Hire or contract a Community Management Officer or a Social Media Director.
- Get Educated on Social Media, attend major conferences and get around those who are high profile in Social Media, and read books for more insight.
I’m just scratching the surface of your plan, but make sure you actually have a plan before jumping into the Social Media mayhem.
This doesn’t have to be difficult, it doesn’t have to be hard, but one thing you do, is work if you wish to realize the results you want from your efforts. It will take time, money and above all else, EFFORT! Whether you are a Broker or an agent, it makes no difference, build a plan, work the plan. But hey, you already know that, but do you know the technology and how to implement it? Do you know how to prepare? Are you willing to pay the price?
In this business, success is not measured by fitting in, it’s by standing out. (Mad Men)