February 7, 2016

Best Podcasts: Online Marketing Made Easy

Best Podcasts for Small Business Series

In a previous post, I listed 6 podcasts, that I liked best, for small business website owners and managers.  Let me share why I like listening to Amy Porterfield’s podcast:

Online Marketing Made Easy Amy PorterfieldOnline Marketing Made Easy

Amy has a great background working for Tony Robbins and Harley Davidson, her first job out of college.  For Tony, she had roles as Content Manager and then managing large marketing campaigns.  That must have been an awesome experience! She has nearly 75,000 Likes on Facebook.

She’s easy to listen to, kinda reminds me of Giada De Laurentis on Food TV, and the podcasts are well organized and professionally produced. She’s the most corporate of the 6 and that’s fine.

But it’s not just what she teaches, (we’ll get to that below) it’s how she presents herself. Totally trustworthy and committed in a world of info-marketing snake oil salesmen.  Her values:

  • Hard work, but you have to be able to throw it all away for love and family
  • No drama
  • Acceptance – no judgment lives here
  • Wearing my heart on my sleeve
  • Embracing what’s next
  • But mostly, that social media should be something you enjoy, not dread.

Want more? Wiley asked her to write the book, Facebook Marketing All-in One for Dummies. I have that book and highly recommend it!

What I Learned

The Online Marketing Made Easy podcast has tackled a range of subjects, including email, YouTube videos and obviously Facebook.  Like so many, she advises you to accommodate mobile users, who have become a majority of Internet users. “47% of people who have to pinch or zoom will not return to your blog.”

Here are my biggest takeaways: [Read more…]

Best Podcasts for Small Business

Learn how to manage a profitable website and have some fun too!  We all consume information different ways for different reasons.  I try and read about 20 books a year, attend a half-dozen conferences and subscribe to several magazines to learn how to build, market and manage profitable websites for clients and my own projects.

I look at blogs that are recommended in social media, but I just don’t stay up with subscriptions like I should.  There is only so much time… I can increase my efficiency (and ROI) by combining tasks like listening to podcasts while driving or getting a powerwalk in.

Over the past couple of years, these have become my favorites, for the information they share and the manner in which it is presented.  For small business owners and entrepreneurs, you may find that these podcasts cover a very good range of information.

I’d also like you to share your favorites in the Comments below! I will be writing about each of these in future posts.  I will share some of my biggest aha moments from each. Stay tuned!

Best Podcasts for Small Business

Best business podcasts: Amy PorterfieldOnline Marketing Made Easy: Amy Porterfield

Amy is the author of “Facebook Marketing All in One for Dummies” and is probably the most ‘corporate’ in her approach. Her information is solid.

She has leveraged her experience with Tony Robbins and her stint at Harley Davidson to develop products and webinars that show how to monetize your online marketing and blogging efforts using her own tested lead generation strategies.

Topics include “how to successfully launch and promote a new program, grow your email list, get more leads, build your authority, turn your customers into raving advocates OR simply find the time (and mindset!) to rock your social media and content marketing.”

If you’re interested in promoting your products and services using webinars, Facebook advertising, a variety of social media platforms, an online course, video marketing, or content creation, then you too will find her podcast beneficial.  And she seems like the nicest person in the world!

She began by scripting her podcasts and then talked about advice she had received to work from outlines, which I prefer.  Her guests are great subject matter experts.

(Click here for my Online Marketing Made Easy review)

Best podcasts for small business Internet marketingFreedom Ocean: James Schramko & Tim Reid

The intro says “James makes millions on the Internet. Tim has millions of questions.” This is one of my favorite podcasts for the really good information on website strategy and marketing, but these two Aussies are fun to listen to!

James Schramko has created a life of freedom for both himself and his family thanks to mastering (seriously mastering) all there is to know about internet marketing.” ‘Timbo’ Reid has learned well from James and has even come out with his own podcast – Small Business Big Marketing – and coaches and speaks to entrepreneurs around the world.  Put them together and it’s like listening to Gilligan and the Skipper!

James quickly rose as the most successful luxury car salesman in Australia, but he wanted more control and income (who doesn’t?) as he turned to the Internet to somehow replace his paycheck.  The Freedom Ocean podcasts sometimes refer the the steps he took in developing several online businesses.  He also serves up generous portions of what’s working now, which is quite valuable in a business dominated by changing algorithms, tactics, platforms and strategies.  All very valuable to online entrepreneurs and businesses.

(Future link to some of my biggest takeaways from the Freedom Ocean podcast)

*Bonus Podcast! James can also be heard on SuperFastBusiness podcast.

Best marketing podcasts for small businessMarketing Con Queso: Justin Brooke & Michelle MacPhearson
“The only podcast that makes marketing ‘mo easy and less cheesy‘!”  Their tagline is technically wrong as ‘con queso’ means WITH cheese, but there is nothing cheesy about the content they share.

I’ve known Justin for several years and attended a couple of his live conferences. He is wicked sharp when it comes to developing website traffic, has worked with some of the great marketers you could ever imagine and he has a great personality.  He and his wife Chaunna, also a very savvy online marketer, used to have a weekly online TV show – The Tuesday Tackle – which was fun and informative.

Podcaster Justin Brooke

These guys are thinking about the cigars they enjoyed near the pool last night.

The fun continues with Justin and Michelle MacPhearson, who I have followed for some time and bought some of her products, as well.  She contributes much of the “how to” information that is beneficial to online marketers.  She’s savvy on social media, website traffic and content marketing.

*Bonus Podcast! Check out Michelle’s podcast, “The Michelle MacPhearson Show: Social Media Marketing and Content Marketing Strategies to Grow Your Business.

(Future link to notes from the Marketing con Queso podcast)

I Love Marketing podcast with Joe Polish and Dean Jackson
I Love Marketing
: Joe Polish & Dean Jackson

Joe and Dean are solid marketers who are well respected by some of the titans of marketing. Joe made a name for himself teaching the carpet cleaning industry how to promote their services. Dean focuses on realtors.

This podcast covers a very wide assortment of marketing techniques, including offline, and that’s one of the reasons it’s on this list of best business podcasts.  I like the idea of a “before,” “during,” and “after” for any marketing campaign.

One of the things they’re most known-for are the “8 Profit Activators,” which were initially discussed in episode 31.  Great insights there!

This is the only podcast that I have any complaints about and they are:

  • The fidelity is not great, apparently because their sampling rate is lower than just about everyone else.  The problem is exacerbated by them not always speaking close to the mic.  So the show is sometimes hard to hear.
  • The description of the show always begins with “The one about…” which means you can’t read as much as you would like.

I can forgive those complaints as the information is really good.

(Future link to some of my favorite insights from the I Love Marketing podcast.)

Best lifestyle podcastTropical MBA: (Formerly The Lifestyle Business Podcast)  Dan Andrews & Ian

It’s all about entrepreneurship and Lifestyle Design, but with a slightly different perspective.  These guys primarily operate out of Asian countries and take advantage of lower labor costs, but working in areas where tech talent is plentiful – a lifestyle that probably appeals mostly to young single men.

While they focus on helping people create and manage location-independent businesses, the approach and information is useful to those who run location-dependent businesses!

One of the first things that attracted me was the idea of creating a business to support a lifestyle, rather than deciding what your lifestyle would be depending on your circumstances.  Dan and Ian discuss a wide range of topics, often sharing insights that come from two products they create and sell; portable bars and high-end cat furniture.

But the also discuss important issues, such as entrepreneurism, bootstrapping and ethics.

They have over 200 podcasts and 1 million downloads.  The podcast comes out every Thursday morning.

(Check back when I drill down and share some of the best content from the Tropical MBA podcast)

best podcast for passive incomeThe Smart Passive Income Podcast: Pat Flynn
7 million downloads is a testament to Pat’s popularity.  He makes money online several different ways and he shares the results of all income sources on a monthly basis.  In between, he has great information, often interviewing a guest.

He freely shares all of his online business and blogging strategies, income sources and killer marketing tips and tricks so you can be ahead of the curve with your online business or blog. Listen to this podcast and you’ll learn how you can create multiple sources of passive income, which should appeal to just about all of us!

Learn how he banks a six-figure salary while working only a few hours a week. Automation, outsourcing, crowdsourcing, search engine optimization, building authority and trust, niche sites, social media, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Podcasting, eBooks, online courses, affiliate marketing, getting things done and everything that works (and doesn’t work) to help you better understand how to crush it with your online business.

(My biggest aha moments from the Smart Passive Income blog are coming soon!_

As I review my suggestions above, It’s clear that these are great podcasts for business; from the techniques shared by Amy Porterfield, James Schramko, Justin Brooke and Michelle MacPhearson to the lifestyle or entrepreneurial efforts of Pat Flynn, Dan & Ian to the comprehensive insights you find from Dean Jackson and Joe Polish.  I thank them all!

What are YOUR favorite podcasts for business?

Content Marketing World Day 2

The Best Tweets from Content Marketing World 2013

As I followed the Twitterstream from Content Marketing World in Cleveland, I was thinking that it might be easier to take notes from the comfort of my own office than if I were at the conference itself.  Yesterday I was talking about the benefits of attending conferences live, but with so many prolific Twitter reporters, it’s easy to get so much from 1,000 miles away.

I still don’t think it’s a substitute for the opportunity to meet people, hear their reactions and see the slide decks, but I learned a lot of good information from the tweets from Content Marketing World. #cmworld  Here they are with some comments by me in italics:

Summary of top tweets from day 2 of Content Marketing World 2013 #cmworld

I missed the first sessions.

9 out of 10 mobile searches lead to action; over half lead to purchase. (That’s pretty flippin’ important!)

@MarketingBuddy says that websites need to be laid out like comic books

Instagram is a wonderful way to see how users see content through their mobile eye

Lookbooking is like Pinterest meets Slideshare. Embed digital “books” with text. (I need to check this out)

Content marketing tool Lookbook allows you to create a visual digital “book” of your content recommended from @jcherno

The “Hippo” method of website redesign: Highest Paid Person’s Opinion. (That’s not always the best thing!)

9% of U.S. adults are using smartphones during sex.  12 percent of smart phone use during showering (They never explained how many were using a smartphone while having sex in a shower)

Quick trick: test visual rendering by pinning your site to Pinterest.

Most customers don’t want to have a relationship with you. They expect a solution from you“, by Ed Hadley.

Homepage carousels are great for art directors, bad for conversion. Well, damn. (First I heard of this. Interesting.  Our customers always like sliders)

Remember to measure your evangelists! (They are a target persona!)

Give evangelists something to evangelize. Supply sharing fodder.

Pick the right channels & platforms to connect and engage with clients ( go where they consume content). (YES! Determine who your personas are, where they hang out, what their pain points are and give them quality content every step of the way!)

content is liquid; it will adapt to whatever container you put it in.

Use structured content to develop a consistent experience regardless of device platform.

65% of smartphone shoppers say they prefer mobile web vs mobile apps for shopping

Look at everyone one of your images meta tags. (Develop custom meta tags for every picture, and custom title tags and meta descriptions for every page on your site.)

Marketing is Not A Department” says @bernieborges The marketing function belongs to all employees

Google image search now has drag and drop for image search! Take the time to add detail > get found first.

The more likes/shares your Facebook post receives, the higher % of your followers your post is shared with | Comments worth more (Many people don’t know this!)

Decide keyframes in your videos for YouTube. Google will use them in their search.

86% of Americans use a smartphone while watching TV. People are primed to do act while watching TV.

75% of people would not return to a mobile site that won’t load in four seconds or less (Google is watching this too!)

Been attending a webinar by Ann Handley of @marketinprofs on creating epic #content. Focus on empathy, utility and inspiration!

Content optimized for search engines is not necessarily optimized for sharing.

People take in visual content 60K times faster than written content.  (And people scan web pages before they decide whether or not to read them)

Without a story your organization is forgettable, maybe even boring (Story telling was a big subject at Content Marketing World. Case studies are similar and effective, especially if you end the story with a testimonial!)

52% of B2B content marketers say they face challenges producing the kind of content that engages.

Stories help customers to remember your company. Where would Allstate be without their main character Mayhem? (It helps them like and trust you too)

40% of content marketers own less than 10% of the budget

Look at your title. Think how it works visually. A shorter title gets bigger type!
Consider the cover, it’s critical

The CMO should be the 2nd most important person in a company,@bethcomstock from GE is an example

We invented this super-charged SEO approach…and then realized it already existed. Content marketing

content creation is expensive. Leverage other people’s resources/content

Secret sauce, secret sauce, secret sauce… Enough with the sauce.

“If you don’t have room to fail, you don’t have a right to grow.”

For SEO, don’t forget to go back in time. Top searches for 2012. Can you bring it back for 2013?

Webinar attendance measures: Send to 50K qualified, 3 weeks out, 4x. Expect 1/4-1/2 % response and 40% actual attendance.

Ignore click thru rates : Shoot for a zero opt-out rate

Avoid the “landmark” writing session. Write 30 minutes a day. Then re-read what you wrote, or notes, or mind map. (Spread out is better. BUDGET enough time for each project!)

Spend 80% of your time on content distribution and 20% on creation. (Lotsa people tweeted about the 80/20 rule.  One of the biggest take-aways from Content Management World!  Creating focused content that appeals to your audience is critical, but you need to spend much more time promoting it to those audiences on the platforms that they prefer.)

Avoid TH:DR (Too Hard – Didn’t Read) – 94% of viewers leave a site without reading a single word! Make content more effective (Make it scannable!  Images are strong.  I coach my clients to try and write site content with a headline, a couple sub-headlines or bolded text, some bullet points, and only then, a few short paragraphs and some attractive images.  BTW, I don’t know if I have them in my notes, but the use of humans in images was recommended.)

People remember stories, not facts

Want content ideas? Find out what prospects are asking your sales team and answer them through content (Also monitor Answer sites related to your niche.  Bonus Tip: Google “your keyword or niche” + FAQs to find out what others have deemed most important or top of mind)

Timing is defined by your audience not you. Press Releases accrue views over time.

Be a do-er. Test stuff. Slideshare, Youtube, Pinterest are free. Use them to test how your content will look.

Strategy = “Hire great people, and good things will happen.

Award Winners:

Pace @PaceComm won Agency of the Year

Julie Fleischer @jfly from Kraft Foods won Content Marketer of the Year

Joe Chernov @jchernov tweeted: Couldn’t be happier to hand over my Content Marketer of the Year tiara to … @jfly! Congrats & deserved!

Marketer of the Year finalists were Todd Wheatlan Julie Strawson, Julie Feischer, Christa Carone, G.Stenitzer, Linda Boff, Chris Fram

Best length for video is 60-90 seconds, @ToddWheatland

@LinkedInMktg, aka Jonathon Lister from LinkedIn is giving the afternoon keynote:

@LinkedInMktg has and always will have a members-first mentality, even over revenue

The same person who goes to LinkedIn in the day may go to Facebook at night. They behave differently in each place. (They invest time in LinkedIn.  Facebook is less an ‘investment.’)

Professionally we invest time vs Spending our personal time. Nice B2B vs B2C perspective for marketers

Marketers must adopt a ‘members-first’ approach to content. Deliver a meaningful amount of high quality content

My key takeaway from day 1 of #cmworld: Content needs a post-publication strategy.  (See above. 20% create content and 80% promoting it)

Every story is made better with a great visual.

Impressive: Hubspot’s native ads on LinkedIn generated 400% more leads than all other marketing.

Change the mantra from “always be closing” to “always be helping”

Building relationships is not just about content but context.

The key ingredient to creating better content is relevance (You need to know your personas to create better content!)

When seeking relevance, find qualitative info, not just quantitative info on audience.

This is great stuff: Moving from information to insights makes your content relevant.

Real-time, relevant content – 1)Wait for the moment; 2) In the moment; 3) Anticipating the moment (predict)

Is your content relevant? Look at: Social engagement, Increased referral traffic, Higher quality leads (…and sales. THAT’s how you measure social media ROI!)

When creating global content, @rohitbhargava says apply LIST method: ensure Language, Idioms, Spelling, Time Zone are appropriate.

Put podcast on website but on: stitcher,soundcloud, blogtalkradio,spreaker,bluebrry, ibsyn

Half of podcast consumers are age 12 to 34.

Storytelling is the new currency in B2B conversations. Convert client interactions into shared experiences.

Benefits of Humor: evokes emotion, cuts through the noise, humanizes the brand, shows authenticity

Despite what we saw from @Mildenhall amateur-quality video is OK for most brands. (I agree.  In fact, I think audio quality is more important than video quality!)

VIDEO: Embed subscription forms into your videos. Allow docs to appear during video. IE. masterclass.com

Marketo got 8k views for a whitepaper on inbound marketing. They turned it into a (more visual) SlideShare, & got 328k views!

Failure is part of the creative process.

 Do any of these ideas inspire you?  Can you implement them and profit from them?



Top Blog Posts

Website ROI Guy Most Popular Blog Posts

The first cellphone call was made 40 years ago.  I was the first to interview someone on the radio via cellphone.

The first cellphone call was made 40 years ago. I was the first to interview someone on the radio via cellphone.

It’s always interesting to see which posts attract the most eyeballs.  So far in 2013, a post I wrote in October about Facebook surpassing 1 billion members and some characteristics or their members has been most popular.

Next came a post I did last week about my favorite tweets from Social Slam.  I tweeted into the hashtag and was re-Tweeted by several people, including the organizer, which created lotsa visits.

3rd was a post I wrote in January 2011 on hotel marketing, that has become a perennial favorite.  It’s always in the Top 10.

How to Get Content Ideas for Websites has jumped into the Top 5. It’s about the Content Idea Generator that spits out ideas based on keywords related to your subject or niche and it’s pretty cool!

5th most popular is a post I wrote on quintile analysis, which is studying something based on 5 equal parts, such as dividing an audience into 5 ‘quintiles’ from most loyal (1st quintile) to the least loyal or interested (5th quintile.)

Next is another hotel marketing post and the 7th most popular is a recent article on local marketing.  I hope you enjoy them and please let me know what you think!

#1 Facebook Fun Facts

#2 What I Learned From Social Slam While Sitting in My Easy Chair

#3 Hotel Marketing; How to Use Twitter to Put Heads in Beds

#4 How to Get Content Ideas for Websites

#5 Quintile Analysis, What I Learned About Analyzing Audiences

#6 Top Hotel Marketing Strategies

#7 Local Marketing Tips Ideas and Tactics

Bonus Round: What’s on the Mind of Small Business Owners

Can You Hear Me Now?

I thought it was interesting that the 40th anniversary of the first cellphone call was celebrated last week.  Legend has it that Marty Cooper of Motorola called his rival Joel Engler at Bell Labs to gloat over the new invention. The phone weighed 2.5 pounds and had a battery life of about 20 minutes.  (Motorola DynaTAC 8000x)

I don’t remember the guy’s name, but I had the first radio interview with anyone using a cellphone. It was in the late 1970s and I had read an article about the first ‘cell tower’ being located near the radio station. (At I-88 and Eola Rd)  Whoever I interviewed must have worked for Bell Labs, which had a presence in the area.  Motorola was much further North.  I wish I knew the date of the interview and had recorded it.

What I learned from Social Slam 2013 While Sitting in My Easy Chair

Best of Social Slam 2013 Morning Addition

Conference notes from Social SlamThere used to be a service called Conference Notes, but I don’t know if it still exists.  Social media participation at conferences may have made it an obsolete model.  My friend Dan Morris shares his ideas on a weekly basis with his Letters From Dan, that sometimes include “conference notes.” I love going to conferences and when I can’t, to be able to follow along on a video feed or by following a hashtag is the next best thing. (But it’s no substitute for making connections in person)

I’ve been monitoring the Social Slam #soslam hashtag on Twitter today, which has been hard to keep up with.  Great insights on social media and SEO.  I haven’t done this in a while, but here are my notes from the morning session of Social Slam in Knoxville.  I want to thank everyone who shared their takeaways on Twitter and ultimately blogs.  I plan to return the favor at next year’s Social Slam.

Social Slam 2013 Tweets

Best of 1st half of #soslam:

The fear of social is simply the fear of the unknown.

Employees are the most under utilized social media resource – they want to be brand ambassadors

Most underutilized platform isn’t a platform at all, it’s your employees

Social media marketing doesn’t mean “Be on Facebook”

Education is key to getting your employees to engage in social.

Every social media platform has it’s purpose.

Most underutilized platform isn’t a platform at all, it’s your employees

I get better engagement on LinkedIn for B2B then G+

Title tags, alt tags on images… make sure your site is set up for SEO.

Keep your web site content fresh and dynamic: RSS feeds from elsewhere, chat events, blogs. It can’t just be a brochure

“Mirror social engagement with face-to-face engagement”

Fill out your Twitter profile. Show personality even if it’s a business profile.

Inbound links is still very important, and you don’t get them without phenomenal content.

Use high word counts filled with valuable content, or be very funny.

If you ain’t first, you’re last. “@hollywoodslinky The #1 search result produces over twice as much traffic as being #2

On social media… “be creepy but don’t sound creepy!”

Fill out your Twitter profile. Show personality even if it’s a business profile

@seanmcginnis @rhogroupee @jfloyd AND @ericpratum – #SEO ROCK STARS! #SoSlam

McDonalds gets about 3 million tweets a month!

You don’t own your followers they will stay with your if they want to.

If you’re a smaller company, it’s easier to change the culture.

Be genuine and passionate.

Write epic “shit” to add value. Either funny, controversial or adds value

What happens when sales, PR and marketing are all the same person?

Casual internet users don’t think they use the internet. They check email and use Google.

Use “calculated authenticity.” Don’t tell all your secrets, but do get personal.

Share with people. Show your personality.

Longer form content is king

Think of your site as alive.  You can’t get to the top of #Google with a static
website you have to regularly adding content.

Search engines aren’t the enemy. They are just a connector, and they want to connect searches with results.

Love the idea: “Calculated Authenticity”: share something personal without being naked! Humanizing yourself makes you relatable.

Image file names should not be published with underscores, but with dashes.

Use alt tags on images that are clear and fully descriptive.

Folks really have to leverage the “alt tag” with their images on blogs/websites – that’s how Google finds you!

Google doesn’t read images. It reads alt tags.

Blog comments come from emotional reactions to your content. They need to WANT to share their take on your content

You need to have a professional design, good headline, well spaced content and subheadings, show personality.

Deliver answers to questions with your blog. That requires listening

Every engagement should have an objective.

Actively listen to ideas for blog posts.” Monitor the conversations around you and respond by writing the post.

Note to self: look up Google Authorship and add to blog.

Google Authorship basically just connects your blog to your Google+ page, and that tells Google Search.

It’s official, #soslam has convinced me to head back to Google+. Now how the heck to I navigate the app?

Places your friends check in at will rank higher on your Google search if you use Google+

Five Facebook Competition Applications To Build EMail Subscribers bit.ly/ZcE0hE by @IanCleary

Genius icebreaker by @dinodogan… Picture of audience taken, posted to Facebook, invited audience to tag themselves.

To test SEO, sign out of your Google account, change your location to United States, to get more generic results.

What do you want social to do for you? Brand awareness? Sales?

There’s huge value in commenting on other people’s blogs.

Comments don’t provide any SEO benefit. When have you ever seen a comment in a google search result?

Comments have no SEO benefit, bummer! What’s your preference between Livefyre and Disqus?

If you want 100 comments on your blog, comment on 100 other blogs.

Look up tedtalk “Filter Bubbles”

Social engage, nimble and twitter lists are great ways to remain engaged with followers. What do you use?

Tip from #soslam: send your Google #Authorship link with your bio when you guest #blog

The devil question arises: How do you tell ROI in social media… “Is your phone ringing?” Great answer!

Expectation setting with #SEO? Don’t talk rank – talk traffic & conversion

Search results are now highly personalized so that rank is misleading…

Trust me you can MARKET on LinkedIn! I have generated thousands of dollars of business from LinkedIn connections!

Write great headlines. Five times as many people read the headlines as read the body content!

Instagram is great for making content for Facebook and Twitter

Your biggest takeaways from Social Slam?

I may post highlights from the afternoon session of Social Slam later today or tomorrow, but I’d be interested in your biggest insights and aha moments!

UPDATE: My favorite Tweets from the afternoon session are here!

My Top 5 Recent Posts: Social Media Privacy, Small Business and Hotel Marketing

Top 5 Blog Posts

Social Media Privacy guy!

An actual picture of the actual Website ROI Guy "To page 1 and beyond!"

Here are the best of my social media and Internet marketing blog posts recently.  Without question, the most popular post in the past couple of months concerned social media privacy. Specifically, LinkedIn and a button you may want to un-check.  I got quite a few trackbacks and comments.

Next was a post in a series of ‘Conference Notes,’ this time the results of a survey by the local Small Business Development Center on “What’s on the minds of small business owners?

I do alot of work with hotels, so it’s not surprising that my “Top Hotel Marketing Strategies” post has been popular.  #3 on the list.

But a post I wrote back in January has been popular ever since and is #4 recently: Hotel Marketing – How to put Heads in Beds!”

At #5, a guest post from Regina Smola a WordPress Security expert on “Tips to Combat Comment Spam on WordPress.”

Like what you’ve read? Please subscribe to my blog updates!

Got a question or a comment on Hotel Marketing, Website ROI, Social Media Security or an article idea? Please make a comment below!



Best of the Blogs: Social Media Marketing

HBestofwsbere are several blog posts that caught my eye this week.  All great
social media tips we've shared with students at CertifiedSocialMedia.com

8 Steps to Launching a Corporate Blog

10 Ways to Build Social Media Expertise

Community Managers

4 Essential Traits in Your Social Media Career

How to Engage Facebook Fan Page Fans

LinkedIn Profile Checklist

12 Ways to Use LinkedIn Today

Metrics/ROI: 20 Metrics to Track

5 Non-Negotiable Provisions for Your Social Media Policies

Best of the Website Success Blogs (April 24, 2009)

Bestofwsb There is so much good content online.  There is a lot of drek too.  I try and distill the best parts for you from time-to-time in Best of the Website Success Blogs.

(cue the intro music)

Successful websites depend on so many things; design & layout, message, usability, marketing, strategy, metrics, etc.  Today, we have many links to information anyone interested in website ROI should consider.

Right off the bat, check out Today is Kick Ass Friday — 10 Q's for U  Kick Ass Friday is a regular feature and I think you like other recent posts, especially if you're an owner or manager.

The rest of the links include search engine tips, design tips for webmasters and social media tips for baby boomers from the always fabulous Barbara Rozgonyi.

For the more technical, we'll take a look at robots.txt files, link to some CAPTCHA scripts and introduce you to a cool tool for putting videos in your website.

And, don't forget the 'hits and giggles" section.  Some funny images captured by the Google Streetview team and a funny video on Facebook manners.

Biz Tips Blog:
Animoto is a Super Easy Video Tool
I've seen a demo of this and would have to agree that it should be in every webmaster's toolkit.

Is Your B2B Site a Good Salesperson?

Daily SEO Blog:
30 Web Design SEO Tips for Webmasters

Online Business:
Top 10 Search Engine Optomization (SEO) Tips

Search Engine Journal:
Google Selectively Ignoring Meta Description Tags?

Search Engine Land:
A Deeper Look at Robots.txt

Dream CSS:
10 Free CAPTCHA Scripts and Services for Websites

the Blog Herald:
20 Law-Related Questions Every Blogger Should Know
You may want to bookmark this!

No Need to Freak Out Over Google Analytics Suddenly Disappearing

The Art of Writing Great Twitter Headlines
You can adapt some of Brian Clark's recommendations to website content too!

Corporate Dollar:
How to Build a Social Media Cockpit With Firefox

The Web in Numbers: The Rise of Social Media
Facebook had doubled to 200 million users in 8 months

Social Networking Websites Review:
2009 Social Networking Websites Product Comparisons
Interesting side-by-side comparisons.

10 Social Media Savvy Tips for Baby Boomers

And finally, for hits & giggles:

Facebook Manners and You

Caught on Camera: The Best of Google Street View

Best of the Website Success Blogs (April 8, 2009)

Marketing and conversion are the two most important elements of a successful website strategy, in my opinion and I have focused significantly on Social Media Marketing in the past year.  I've noticed that I spend more and more time on SM in this blog and have been developing more social media elements into strategies for our Web Asylum customers.  And they are succeeding!

I'm also a big fan of Guerrilla Marketing, which incorporates low and no-cost marketing techniques.  GM and SM go together like PB&J.

This week, we have links to great posts about search, e-commerce, social media and other interesting, important topics to achieve website ROI.  I've included a post on Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires and finally, some 'hits and giggles'.

I hope you find these useful.  I'm gratified by your tweets (@KurtScholle) and emails (kurt at webasylum.com) and look forward to more suggestions of blogs to include on Best of the Website Success Blogs!

Google AdWords:
Analytics and AdWords Tips, Part 1 of 4
Learn how to use Google Analytics to improve AdWords results

Search Engine Journal:
Google Expands One Line SiteLinks: Little Blue Links in Serps

Webdesigner Depot:
10 Tips to Design Usable Shopping Carts

Webmaster Resources has a couple of posts worth reading: Factors That Affect Your Website Usability and SEO and Ten Things That You Should Know About Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Get Elastic's take on Price Guarantees: No Substitute for a Unique Value Proposition

Social Media is surpassing e-mail as a top marketing initiative. WebProNews has a great post on how Twitter can drive traffic to your site.  Writer Chris Crum followed up with: Facebook Can Drive More Traffic Than Google  Read about the apps, including how to post to Twitter from Facebook.

One of the big stories this week was the release of Seesmic, a Twitter application similar to Tweetdeck. TechCrunch has this review.

Reuters MediaFile:
Twitter older than it looks
What demos are hanging out on Twitter?

Chris Brogan:
What an Executive Blog Editor Needs to Know
Chris will be a featured speaker at SOBcon09 Chicago. I'm attending and really looking forward to meeting Chris and others.  Consider attending!

Advertising Age:
Google Uses Twitter to Sell Ads
Intuit Is First Marketer to Have Its Tweets Streamed Across AdSense Network

aimClear blog:
2009 Social Media Optimization: Back to Basics?
A nice report from SES New York

Who doesn't want to be a success?  Reader's Digest has a good article on the secrets of successful entrepreneurs. Secrets of Self Made Millionaires.  I also recommend the Elker book that is mentioned.

And for 'hits & giggles' check out Funny Twitter Cartoons and yourlogomakesmebarf.com

— Kurt Scholle, the Website ROI Guy.

Best of the Website Success Blogs (March 27, 2009)

One of the best finds this week is a list of 100 web development cheat sheets.  There is a new industry report on social media marketing that I'm hoping to finish this weekend.  The latest Nielsen ratings are out and Google maintains the #1 position – no surprise.  Their share has increased 6.6% since last year.  "G" has also made a couple changes to its SERPs.  We've got 15 stupid things you can do with your website.  And we wrap up with a fun cartoon, Twouble with Twitters

The Official Google Blog:
Two New Improvements to Google Results Pages

Google Adwords:
New Insights for Search Features
Including metro specification, category suggestions and new data sources.

Marketing Pilgrim:
SEO, Usability & 15 Stupid Things You Can Do to Your Website
Quick notes from SMX West

E-Marketing Performance:
February 2009 Search Engine Market Share

Comscore's numbers were similar to Nielsen.

Top 100 Lists of Web Development Cheat Sheets
There is some VERY GOOD information here.  I'm still going thru the links.

TopRank Online Marketing Blog:
5 Link Building Tips for New Websites

Junta 42:
Social Media Marketing Industry Report
I haven't read all of this yet, but it looks good!

Social Media Marketing Budgets on the Rise
63 percent of companies plan to increase their social media marketing
budgets in 2009, despite the current weakness in the economy.

Twitter’s Tweet Smell Of Success

Post-Click Marketing blog:
The 10 principles of the tao of post-click marketing

PC World:
10 Facebook Tips for Power Users

Ways Companies Use Twitter for Business

Web 2.0:
Introducing FriendFilter, A Better Way to Make Friends on Twitter

And for "Hits & Giggles", check out this cartoon: Twouble With Twitters