Social Marketing With Photos

They say a picture is worth a thousand words—a concept advertisers and marketers have practiced for years. As marketers switched to social media, though, photos were temporarily sidelined in favor of short snippets of text.

But the photo is coming back. Tweens and teens have flooded Instagram with photos of new outfits and artistic nail polish. As these all-too-impressionable young consumers browse through thousands of photos on various social media sites, marketers are learning that if you want to reach younger generations, a picture is worth morethan a thousand words.

Whether your marketing campaign is targeted to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or a combination of all of the above, there are a few tips to keep in mind.

Keep It Interesting

Consumers log into social media sites for a variety of reasons, many of which revolve around being entertained. Pinterest and Instagram have become so successful because they provide a way for users to share concepts in one simple image, engaging them and inciting them to post comments.

But it’s important to come across as though you’re sharing interesting ideas rather than simply pushing a product. A sofa company, for instance, would do better to post photos of a uniquely-decorated room featuring their sofas rather than simply posting a photo of a sofa. A service-oriented business like a pest control company could post humorous photos of their workers, either on the job or hanging around the office. These photos humanize the business, making customers feel as though they are part of the family.

Run Contests

Several restaurant chains have invited customers to upload a picture of themselves dining in the restaurant to a social media site. For major chains, sometimes the promise of fifteen minutes of fame on a prominent social media site may be enough incentive to participate. However, smaller businesses may have to offer a large monetary prize. Customers will have fun and businesses will see their social media pages filled with interesting photos.

Pay Attention

The great thing about social media is that you’ll usually know instantly whether a photo is a hit with followers or not. Pay attention to your likes, shares, and retweets and note what time of day they happen. If some photos are more popular than others, stick with those types of photos in the future. You’ll begin to get a feel for your demographic in order to be able to better appeal to them after only a short time.

Remember, photos are only a part of social media marketing. Hashtags are still important, as are regular text updates. Don’t discount yourself as a personality in your social media campaigns. Some of the most successful social media campaigns involve the face of the company updating followers on their adventures as they travel, hang out with clients, and enjoy their own products.

 

john lessnauGuest Blogger:

During 2003, John Lessnau popularized Text Link Advertising when he founded LinkAdage.com John is working at doing the same thing 10 years later with social media links at his new website SocialLinkMart.com. Social Link Mart is an open Social Media Link Marketplace for SEOs, website owners, and social media enthusiasts to buy Facebook likes or buy and sell Facebook Shares, Google Plus Shares, and Twitter Tweets. Social link sellers are ranked by social media authority which keeps the bots and spammers out and real people in.

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

Facebook Takes on Google with Graph Search

Introducing Graph SearchEver since I started using Facebook, I’ve never found their search function very useful.  Results were never exactly what I was looking for, and my attempts at locating useful information left me empty-handed.  I always looked to Google to find exactly what I was looking for.  Despite the recent article outlining a great Facebook search “trick” earlier this week (see Facebook Introduces ‘Graph Search’, but this Search Secret Already Helps Marketers), Facebook really had no handle on search.

Now, that all changes.

What is Graph Search?

Graph Search allows users to search for anything connected with them through their “social graph”.  This new search tool basically searches through everything you have ever done on Facebook, and everything your friends have done and shared publicly, and answers your search requests with that information.  Facebook is going to give you the exact information that it thinks you want, based upon your connections within the site.

For example, if you search Google for restaurants, you will get many pages of restaurants that may or may not fit what you are looking for.  Search Facebook for “restaurants my friends like” and you will get very specific results, based upon your friends “likes” and comments.  Based upon the theory that we “trust” our friends on Facebook, these results will more likely result in a purchase, or a visit.

This is great for business.

If you are a small business with an optimized Facebook page, and lots of connections, Graph Search will customize results to the individuals that are searching based upon their connections, and not any SEO tricks and not based upon the popularity of your site.

More importantly, as research has shown, consumers are 71% more likely to choose a product or service when a friend recommends it to them within social media (see Consumers 71 percent more likely to buy based on social media referrals).  Word of mouth marketing is alive and well!  Remember, people do business with people that they know, like, and trust.  And, if a Facebook friend has used, recommended, or “liked” a business, there is an inherent level of trust in that recommendation.  And, that is the information that will be served through Graph Search.

In addition, businesses with a physical location may benefit most from Graph Search.  Especially if they encourage people to “check in” to the location.  This will provide Facebook more information to provide your friends searching for similar businesses.

In order for graph search to meet its full potential Facebook business page users will need to make sure that their information is complete, including the address, and make sure that the category your page is in is the correct one for your business.  You don’t want your jewelry company being listed as a non-profit, now do you?  The more information you provide on your business page, the more accurate the search results will be.  In addition, the more people that check-in or “like” your page, the more likely it will show up when searched for.

How do I get Graph Search?

Right now, it is only in beta, but you can apply for Graph Search by signing up for an invite.  I signed up two days ago, and received my Graph Search today!

So, are you impressed?  Does this fill a need you had?  Will you use it?  Let’s discuss it in the comments!

 

Resources:

Introducting Graph Search

Facebook Graph Search: The Experts Speak

Is This The Facebook Search We’ve Been Waiting For?

Facebook Graph Search: 10 Things You Need To Know About The Social Network’s Big Announcement

How Graph Search can help users see the world through different lenses

How Facebook’s Graph Search Impacts Small Businesses

About Craig Yaris

Craig E. Yaris is the owner of EsquireTech Solutions, which helps small business get found on the social web, whether through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, he can both teach you the effective use of any social network or act as your social media manager, enabling you to reach your clients where they are and when they want to hear from you. He can teach your organization the social media best practices that can help you use the tools of today to cost-effectively increase your bottom line. EsquireTech Solutions brings the social web to your business. Visit EsquireTech Solutions or call 516-495-9107 .

Create Your Own E-book For Free

kindle-ebookYou can create your own ebook in OpenOffice writer with this free Kindle template and EPUB generator from OpenOffice.org.

Kindle Template and EPUB Generator Review

These days, if you want to self-publish a book, the easiest and least expensive way to do it is to make it an ebook. You can save a standard OpenOffice Writer document as a PDF, but it won’t be properly formatted for digital readers, like Kindle, Sony Reader, or Nook. With a free Kindle template for OpenOffice Writer, and a free EPUB generator, you can make sure your Writer file is the perfect size and format, so any digital reader can view your ebook or document exactly the way it was meant to be viewed. Use the free Kindle template and EPUB generator with OpenOffice Writer to take lecture notes that you can read on the go, publish your own digital magazine, or distribute an informative pamphlet. Anyone with a digital reader or other mobile device will be able to read your document easily, and without a lot of scrolling.

Kindle Template by RanRutenberg

Download this free Kindle template from OpenOffice.org to create an OpenOffice Writer document that will display perfectly on a Kindle screen. Standard Writer documents are designed to print on an A4 letter sized sheet of paper. A4 pages are too large to be properly displayed on a 6 inch wide Kindle screen. This free Kindle template formats any OpenOffice Writer document to print on an A6 sized sheet of paper, and it includes custom margins that make it the exact size of the Kindle’s screen.

EPUB Generator by Przemyslaw Rumik

PDF files can be viewed on a digital reader, but the best way to save a document for Kindle viewing is to save it in a digital reader format. EPUB files can be viewed on a Nook, Sony Reader, and Apple iOS devices like iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. EPUB files can also be converted to the Kindle MOBI format with a free conversion program or web site. With this free EPUB generator for OpenOffice Writer, you can ensure that your document is compatible with any digital reader or mobile device. Simply download the extension from OpenOffice.org, install it, and click “Publish to EPUB” on any Writer document to start the conversion process. You will need to have installed additional XSLT filters. These can be installed by selecting “XML Filter Settings” from the OpenOffice “Tools” menu. If you want to publish an ebook, digital magazine, or save a document for easy viewing on your digital reader or mobile device, you can do it for free with a Kindle template and EPUB generator from OpenOffice.org. ebooks can be viewed by almost anybody, either online, or on a mobile device with an Internet connection. Download the free Kindle template and EPUB generator from OpenOffice.org, and you can easily turn your OpenOffice Writer document into an ebook perfectly formatted for digital readers like Kindle, Sony Reader, and Nook.

Citations:

Jen Heller Meservey is a freelance writer for Downloadhaus who loves discovering new software and being more productive with freeware apps. Downloadhaus.com brings you the latest free, open source apps with no waiting times or download queues. Connect with Jen Heller Meservey on LinkedIn.

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

Copyrighting Color: How (And Why) To Do It

 

image sourceMarketing studies suggest that over 80% of visual information is related to colour. Seem unlikely? Try and picture the following in your mind: Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Cadbury and O2. Roughly 90% of you just saw specific shades of red, green, purple and blue. Not a phrase, not an advert, just those colours and maybe a vague logo.

It’s only recently companies have begun to appreciate how vital this aspect of brand management is, and to litigate accordingly: in the past few years Cadbury’s have trademarked their particular shade of purple; T-Mobile have sued a blog for using magenta in their logo; and Orange have laid claim not only to the colour but also the word itself.

For designers it’s a nightmare: with an ever-dwindling colour palette, creating that stand-out design becomes increasingly difficult. But there are plus sides. It’s harder than ever for copycat businesses to leech off your brand, and once you hit upon that perfect combination, the law will protect it as ferociously as your tagline.

Who Can Copyright a Colour?

Short answer: anyone. In the UK, trademarking your logo automatically registers those colours to your brand, and yours alone. There are, however, certain restrictions. Obviously, you need to check if anyone else has a claim on this colour first, and hold back all that design-money until you’re sure.

Secondly, your logo will need to pass the functionality test. This prevents companies from trademarking colours with pre-existing psychological or cultural associations. We associate green with nature, life, ‘organic’ products; therefore you will be unable to pursue a claim on green, unless you are working in a field where that association simply wouldn’t apply (e.g.: telecommunications).

Depending on your industry, defining functionality could get complicated. Louboutin spent a ton of money dragging Yves Saint Laurent through the courts last year, in an attempt to protect their red-soled shoe from imitation. While they did manage to get limited trademark, it only applies in very specific circumstances, with one judge ruling that, due to the nature of the fashion industry, all colour was essentially functional.

How to Get Your Colour-Scheme Protected

So you have a distinct colour-scheme for a unique product in your field that passes the functionality test. What’s the next step? According to U.S law, that colour needs to have taken on a ‘secondary meaning’ in the eyes of the public. Simply put: you can’t trademark cyan for your tableware range, unless a good chunk of the population now associate cyan with your cutlery. Therefore, you need to have been making this product range, without the help of copyright law, for some time already.

It’s not just the USA either. Australian law requires a ‘record of colour use’ before a trademark will be considered, with the colour in question being used ‘intensively and extensively’ over a period of time. After all, if you could pre-emptively trademark a colour the system would be wide open to abuse from professional litigants. Make sure the colour is demonstrably yours.

How It Will Apply

First, your trademark will only apply in your industry. While T-Mobile may have sued a blog for using magenta, the blog in question was concerned with mobile phones; AKA telecommunications, AKA T-Mobile’s industry. If I want to open a delivery service tomorrow and spray all my trucks magenta, there’s nothing they can do about it. Colours are defined by industry.

Secondly, you will only be protected worldwide if you apply to be. In the EU this is via a Community Trade Mark. Make no mistake, what you consider ‘your’ colour may already be in use elsewhere in the world, and will cause a severe headache if you end up going global. Just see the difficulty faced by apple bringing their trademarked ‘iTV’ over to the UK (where the name doesn’t carry quite the same connotations).

At the end of the day, copyrighting colour is a minefield any growing business will need to navigate. While it may seem a headache, try and imagine how you’ll feel if a rival company gets there first.

Attached Images:

Article contributed by Alfie Davenport, who writes for a printing and binding company, PrintExpress.co.uk; who are specialists in booklets, catalogues and business card printing.

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

“Brains on Fire” Igniting Powerful Sustainable Word of Mouth Movements – Courageous CEO Robbin Phillips


In this show, the Courageous CEO, Robbin Phillips of Brains on Fire, shares insights on how you can craft great Word of Mouth movements. Please note the camera changes, B-roll content and green room (off screen staging area) just like a network TV show. This is why Marketing Made Simple TV is “TV on the Web.”Robbin Phillips Brains on Fire

In this show, you’ll learn:
1) The differences between movements and campaigns
2) Why Movements happen off-line and not on-line.
3) How Movements Help Your Advocates Feel Like Rock-Stars

During the show, you can download a free first chapter of the Brains on Fire book by clicking the Yes, Please button in the show.

Marketing Made Simple TV is brought to you by Find New Customers, now part of The Pedowitz Group (http://www.pedowitzgroup.com) and is made possible by show sponsors. Please visit them.

JasonFalls9:55pm via Twitter for iPad

@fearlesscomp Well done! @robbinphillips & @BrainsOnFire are awesome!

About Jeff Ogden

Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancyFind New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

Productivity Killers of a Writer

We writers are a blessed breed as not many other people get to sit around doing nothing all day long. We get to go to the beach whenever we feel like it, go to the pub for lunch and choose to stay there for the rest of the day, or just watch mindless rubbish on TV all day long. For some people, spending the entire time watching Jeremy Kyle and home shopping channels on TV while drinking endless cups of tea is a dream come true and writers get to live that dream, or at least that’s what some people seem to think. The reality, of course, is that watching TV doesn’t pay the rent and we do actually have to get some work done from time to time, although even well-disciplined workers can still find their productivity suffering if they are not careful. However by simply keeping away from some of the biggest productivity killers you will be well on the way to actually getting something done.

Don’t Be a Twit

Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook will destroy your productivity levels if you allow them to. What’s more is that it is not as though you are spending your time doing something constructive because playing bubble blast or reading what your friends have had for breakfast today contributes absolutely nothing towards getting your jobs done. The best way to avoid the output sapping platforms from resulting in you making no money is to not turn them on in the first place. Keep your tabs open only to the web pages that you really do need and once you have finished all of your tasks, you are then free to watch videos of funny animals on Facebook at your leisure.

Just One More Game

copywritingStart up the PS3 to finally beat that level on Black Ops and you had might as well say goodbye to the chances of getting a single word written. Once you have started playing, getting separated from the console becomes more difficult than splitting the atom and the concept of time becomes lost in the challenge of hitting the triangle and circle buttons at exactly the right moments. If you are thinking to yourself: “I’ll turn it off after just one game”, then think again. Keep well away from the machine; don’t even look at it and you might stand a chance of getting those blogs written after all.

Checking Up On the News

No you’re not. You’re not checking up on the news at all, you’re just making an excuse to do something other than working and you know it. You only checked 30 minutes ago anyway so what do you suppose has happened within that half an hour that so urgently requires your attention? Besides, even if something tragic has happened why does it require your attention at all? A huge earthquake in some part of the world for example, is a tragedy indeed but how does you reading about it make the slightest bit of difference to anything? You can still read the news later once you have completed your work so just keep focused on completing your tasks and you can give the news all of your attention later.

It can be all too easy to make excuses or to get lost in something else and before you know it, the working day is over and you have managed to do nothing. Remember to keep your discipline, recognise and keep away from those things that are a distraction to you getting things done and you should find that you are productive and soon delivering quality pieces well within deadlines.

Ian Arnison-Phillips is a copywriter for Apple Copywriters. If you are still struggling to find the motivation and discipline to get your guest blogging finished, we have professional writers who are ready and waiting to help you out.

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

How Modular Booth Designs Increase Trade Show Portability

nimlok modular trade show displayConsidering the time and money that businesses pour into their trade booths, it makes sense that the trade booths would be designed with longevity in mind. After all, why invest hours on top of hours, or thousands of dollars, into designing and/or buying your booth if it will only be used once? You want to make sure your booth looks professional and that it will meet all of your company’s needs. You want it to attract customers, but it is also important that it be easy to set up and take down, that the complicated logistics of transporting it do not outweigh the benefits of using it in the first place. Modular booth designs are a great option for many businesses, largely because they are so portable. But there are other benefits to modular designs as well. Let’s review some of these benefits.

Great portability

Let’s face it: not every booth representative is also a handyman. In fact, most are not. So why do companies sometimes expect their employees to know the intricacies of setting up and taking down a trade show booth? Modular display booths are built to go up and come down quickly and easily, without the need for complicated tools or expertise in carpentry. A booth that can be quickly disassembled saves your employees a lot of hassle, stress, and time. It also makes it easier to transport the booth as smaller pieces, requiring lower baggage fees or less room in the trunk of a car.

Display flexibility

Another benefit of modular booth designs, closely related to portability, is that modular booths are scalable – that means that you can use only a small part of the display booth when you do not need the full-size kiosk, or when you have two conferences the same week and want to have booths at both. This can also be very helpful for adjusting to different space requirements. Some trade shows will allow you the space for your whole booth, others will only allot you enough room for half. Using a modular display lets you scale the booth to the size you need.

Saving money

Many businesses shy away from modular booths because they have a higher sticker price. But the truth is that this needs to be viewed as investment: spending more upfront will save you money down the road. Instead of buying multiple booths for multiple shows, you can buy one booth for use at a number of different shows. You will also save money on transporting the booth, making it an even better investment. Finally, the time you and your representatives save in taking the booth apart and putting it back together also should be viewed as a saved cost. Time is money, after all.

Functional flexibility

Besides being scalable in size, many modular booths are also flexible in their shapes. Many can be reconfigured or reorganized to fit into odd floor spaces. Depending on your needs, you can make a booth that is wide open or a booth that is enclosed and intimate. This will come in extra handy if you want to open your booth to the public for part of the day, and then close it off to only specific kinds of potential customers later in the afternoon.

Modular booth designs are a great way to save time and money while making your booth more flexible.

About the Guest Blogger:

Justine Savage works at Nimlok, a company that provides custom trade show solutions, including modular trade show displays.

 

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

Digital Media and Business: The Case for Regulation

(be warned this is not a short read and the good stuff is at the bottom)

Digital Media Social Media Regulation and CertificationIf you follow anything just about anywhere the subject somehow always turns to the economy, and it should. Money makes the world go around and it’s the basis for our capitalist society. The confusion comes in when we try to figure out what has happened or is happening. It’s simple: the everyday individual has become as powerful as major media, has found ways to be as influential as any politician, can walk away from most jobs and compete with their former employer in many cases with better customer service at a far lower cost.

Unemployment in the United States is around 8% according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but many argue that the number could be closer to 30% because it doesn’t take into account those that are underemployed, or are no longer reporting looking for employment or their benefits expired.

What Happened?

The Digital Age arguably has a much longer history then the .com revolution, but this was the turning point that corporations and leadership in the United States missed, or just underestimated. The introduction of the web into the homes of American consumers began the shift in how we consume content. The development of search engines like Google redefined how we learn, in fact Education institutions at all levels still struggle with combating things like plagiarism and balancing the traditional book i.e. encyclopedia vs. the web i.e. Wikipedia. The Social Media revolution changed how we communicate and the mobile rush changed the speed at which we access and share content.

Digital Media’s Effect on the Business and the Economy

There is a battle going on between wisdom and knowledge and the business is coming out as the loser. There are a lot of reasons one can point to the current economic crisis, and the effect it has had on business in the United States. While some point to the greed on Wall Street from Home Loans, or Student Loans, they may not be why we can’t recover.

Education & Digital Media

Today’s youth faces an interesting choice, go to college and spend $40k – $120k and then learn how to use Digital Communications, or start as an intern for a digital company or startup and give 4 years of ups and downs and come out with a skill set that is more attractive than a college degree. In fact in many cases it will flat out provide the knowledge, skills and ability to put another agency or business out of business.

The ability to understand how to build a user, social and search – friendly website is already a major advantage, and take into account that using tools like WordPress and CopyBlogger could help you launch the framework you’ll need to get started for less than a week’s work and a few hundred dollars, it’s no wonder self-employment is on the rise (according to U.S. SBA). Take that to the next level and think about professional development, as a solopreneur you need to learn, set a pattern or “Read, Write and Share” and now you have a learning plan that can in many ways be more effective than traditional education. This also becomes the content, or story of you and your business, arguably the key component to marketing and business in the Digital Age.

Wisdom vs. Knowledge

Wisdom is a process, it takes experience and relationships to really acquire the skill set that gives you the ability to make long-term decisions. Wisdom is the value  that seasoned professionals and some corporations bring to the table, they tend to provide stable long-term solutions through an understanding of the bigger picture.

Knowledge is simply information, it has become nearly limitless and requires little effort to acquire, in many cases provided simply through a solution phrase “Google It”. Knowledge allows many to know more than the individual or corporation next to them by simply spending time to consume content.

A traditional corporation still moves like an iceberg, even if they bring in young talent, that individual is shaped and conforms to the hierarchy and becomes developmentally limited because of the structure they must adhere to. While in many cases they provide long-term solutions that are time-tested and proven, they also suffer for that practice. Time-Tested and Proven is the practice of pre-Digital Age business and is the reason why newspapers nearly went extinct. Once you consider the traditional models overhead for their employees, it’s no wonder you shake your head and try to figure out why their profits are down and their prices are up.

The solopreneur was stuck having to decide, work 9-5 for $60k a year (before taxes) likely with a commute or work at your own pace in a manner that fits you for $40 – $120k with taxes subject to your expenses (S Corp). The solopreneur lives in their community, can operate with significantly less overhead and pivots to solutions as they are introduced to the market. This means the business owner can get the website that was presented to him for $10k for $2k and in many cases will have someone who has a stronger relationship and understanding of that business and the community it serves. After all, why would they work for you, if they can work for themselves and do it for less with more freedom.

Starting to understand the wisdom vs. knowledge analogy?

This is at the heart of the current issue facing the United States economy, the balance between the two is swinging at the far ends of both, after all the best talent isn’t going to come to work for a corporation for less than what they can make for themselves and that’s not even giving consideration to the ego and freedom of being an independent business owner. The issue they face of “lack of corporate support” is vanishing in some industries like marketing as companies like Google and Constant Contact have now built entire service systems around training independent agencies and consultants, in many cases better than larger agencies can. This is nothing new to companies like AVON, Amway and Lia Sophia who have built their entire business model on helping independent business owners be the best trained service agents the world has to offer in their industry.   

How can the United States fix the economy is they don’t understand the change Digital has had on business? Policies that have been initiated by traditional models don’t fit when the middle market talent is rewarded by competing with the corporations they would have gone to work for. Now take into account laws and restrictions for some industries that just don’t fit into things like mobile and social marketing and you have a big issue facing the future of business in the United States, who regulates this?

The Case for Regulation

I hate to say it, but business is suffering from the two extremes; First there is the inflated expenses from a corporation product or service that is caused by unorganized management, poor execution and in most cases unneeded overhead. It doesn’t seem to get better when that product or service comes from an independent consultants who in many cases means well but can’t provide the actual solution their offering.

What’s worse? Is it the $10k for a website that really should be priced at $2k – $5k that prevents a business from spending money in other ways to make use of that tool to generate new business, made even worse by the those that can’t come up with that investment. Perhaps it’s a website at $2k – $5k that doesn’t have the branding and structure to build new business, missing the simple basics like digital call to actions, social and search integration and other data and lead capture features. In either case the business on the purchasing side is facing an issue that prevents their business from seeing digital success.

It leaves the digital industry in flux as corporations and agencies have been as guilty for selling junk solutions to offset their losses on traditional products as those overnight solopreneurs and consultants that are offering budget solutions that don’t work either.

In the end, digital media is a necessity of business. If business owners don’t find ways to incorporate digital strategies into their product offerings, services and brand story they’re not going to be in business for long. In many cases, without a digital strategy most businesses will never reach their full potential. If these business owners don’t know how to tell a legitimate provider from a scarlet corporation or consultant it too will destroy their business. It’s not just consultants and agencies either, it can be a standalone service, something like say Groupon?

We have regulations and oversight for Insurance, Healthcare, Telecommunications, Banking and so on. It’s time someone stepped in and set a standard for the bare minimum before you can represent the service for sale to a business or a consumer. It shouldn’t restrict competition and creativity, but it should set a standard for minimum practices to represent yourself as a provider in the industry and to think I haven’t even touched the issue of individuals or companies teaching or offering training in it. It’s scary when in most cases they themselves clearly don’t know what they are doing with it and have no professional development experience or training with education learning objectives or adult learning practices.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

TWITTER TAKES ON 2013

INTRODUCTION
It has been known for sometime that images enhance social media the way the talkies transformed the film industry. It was a long time coming but visual design finally caught up to social media. Or did social media finally wake up to visual design? That does not matter. What does matter is that they finally got together and their marriage is one that was made in heaven, for the most part.

@MariSmith twitter page © Mari Smith

@MariSmith twitter page © Mari Smith

@JoyLynskey twitter page © Joy Lynskey

@JoyLynskey twitter page © Joy Lynskey

Social media has embraced the visual and has been benefitting from it ever since. Facebook posts that contain images get a greater percentage of Likes and comments.

Statistic Number 1: “…photos on Facebook Pages received 53% more Likes than the average post.”
Statistic Number 2: “…photo posts attracted 104% more comments than the average post…”

Source: Hubspot Blog

Twitter page of @LamourSupreme

@LamourSupreme  twitter page © Lamour Supreme

@WildmanSteveBrill twitter page © Wildman Steve Brill

@WildmanBrill twitter page © Wildman Steve Brill

THE DUOS
Every major social media tool has a visual component:
• Facebook bought Instagram
• Google owns YouTube
• Yahoo flaunts flickr

Pinterest is social media’s grand dame having risen to fame and fortune faster than any other unit of the social media toolkit to date. So far it seems to have no desire to take a mate. It is doing quite well without one.

@FindandConvert twitter page © Find and Convert

@FindandConvert twitter page © Find and Convert

@CraigEYaris twitter page © Craig Yaris

@CraigEYaris twitter page © Craig Yaris

TWITTER TAKES A MATE
Well, Twitter has joined in. Twitter has the ability to connect Instagram images through tweeted URLs. Even better, it has developed a method for some serious customization of its pages. Twitter now allows its members to say, ‘Hey, this page is mine and no one else’s. I am cool. I am serious. I am funny. I am creative. I am unique.’

@ManOneLA twitter page © Man One

@ManOneLA twitter page © Man One

@AmyPorterfield twitter page © Amy Porterfield

@AmyPorterfield twitter page © Amy Porterfield

EASY AS ONE-TWO-THREE
It does not take very long to figure out how to create a completely customized page or one that is a combo of twitter template and original design. There are three components involved:
• the image
• the header
• the background

@BasilPuglisi twitter page © Basil C. Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi twitter page © Basil C. Puglisi

@MktngBytesMaven twitter page © Alison D Gilbert

@MktngBytesMaven twitter page © Alison D Gilbert

Twitter offers all kinds of templates, choices of color and pattern making for the background. In addition, one can take a custom image and tile or repeat it on the screen. In front of that, appears a vertical band containing one’s tweets and other information.

At the top of the band is the header. Twitter allows a very large image to be imported for this area but reduces it quite a bit when uploaded. In front of the header, appear one’s image, name, twitter name, a URL and mini-bio. A 180×180 facebook icon works fine for the image.

@TheEarthDiet twitter page © Liana Werner-Gray

@The EarthDiet twitter page © Liana Werner-Gray

@AlisonsArt twitter page © Alison Gilbert

@AlisonsArt twitter page © Alison Gilbert

CONCLUSION AND QUESTIONS
The results can be very creative and unique as witnessed by the samples displayed throughout this post. What do you think of them? I am eager to hear your thoughts:
• Do you think these samples are creative and unique?
• Do you think they are too much?
• Which one(s) do you like the most and the least?
• Do you have any other thoughts or comments about this post?

SOURCES
The Power of Images on Facebook
Five Reasons Why Twitter Background Is Really Important
Warning: Your Visual Message Is Just As Important
Visual Marketing Book
Twitter Headers and Covers

 

 

 

 

 

About Alison Gilbert

Through decades as an entrepreneur, I developed ventures in over a half a dozen industries including HEALTH FOOD | GRAPHIC DESIGN | BUSINESS PROMOTION | HOLISTIC HEALTH | DECORATIVE PAINTING | SOCIAL MEDIA | PUBLIC SPEAKING | WRITING. Eventually under the umbrella of ALISON*S ART, INC, they evolved into the dba MARKETING BYTES, a hybrid company specializing marketing small business using social media marketing and traditional graphic design services. Currently retired, I am focusing on teaching social media marketing graphic design and visual journalism. I can be messaged through www.facebook.com/alisondgilbert and tweeted @MktngBytesMaven and @AlisonsArt.

Top 10 Stories on Digital Ethos for 2012

Top 10 ListThis is it.  The last Saturday of 2012.  I’m not really sure where the year has gone, and I’m sure many of you feel the same way.  As I sit here and reflect on the year gone by, I realize there have been some great moments, as well as some real major disasters within the social media world.  And, there are plenty of lists categorizing these throughout the “interwebs”.  For those interested, I’ve included links to those lists in the resources, below.

But what about this site?  With a large day-to-day increase in visitors and subscribers to Digital Ethos, there may be things that have appeared throughout the year that you have missed, so I thought we would be remiss in not offering you a list of our top stories from the previous year.  So, without further ado, here are our top 10:

1.  Nine Steps to Becoming a Twitter Chat Pro – Have you heard of twitter chats?  Have you been “bitten” by them?  Then check out these 9 steps to becoming a pro.

2.  Beneficial Twitter Strategies — There are actually a few different strategies that seem to be working for businesses using Twitter as a marketing tool. A perfect running strategy can also be custom tailored to your own small business needs by combining a bit of knowledge on social media engagement with a handy tool or two.

3.  A Day at Google New York & Seth Godin – This is a great recap of a day spent at Google through their Google Engage for Agencies program, and a great opportunity to learn from Seth Godin.

4.  Social Media and Hurricane Sandy —  Everyone on the east coast will remember Hurricane Sandy, and the way it changed many of our lives.  Here is a great article on how social media played a part.

5.  More on Logo Design & Branding – This comment to blog post regarding company logos is a great history and discussion on logos and branding.

6.  Consistency is Key in Your Integrated Marketing Strategy —  So, you are “on” social media, but now what?  How do you succeed?  Consistency is the key.

7.  What Digital & Social Media Marketers Can Learn from Business Consultants —  Before even engaging in marketing and social media, you need to know your goals, and you need to find a consultant who believes your goals are important.

8.  Why You Should Be Using Twitter and 7 Random Benefits —  Twitter seems to be a hot topic this year, and this article is no different.  Why should you be on Twitter and what benefits will it bring?

9.  How Important is Response Time to Your Customers on Twitter and Facebook? – Businesses that claim to be active on social media also need to be responsive to posts by clients and potential clients.  But how important is that, and how quickly must you respond?

10.  Top 10 On-Line Social Media Resources (plus one more) – What list is complete without another top 10 list.  Check out these other great resources for social medial know-how.  You won’t be sorry!

So, there you have it.  The top 10 articles that have appeared on Digital Ethos throughout 2012.  Did you have a favorite that isn’t on the list?  Was there one article that really changed your thinking, tactics or plan?  Make sure to let us know!

And my wish for all of you, in 2013, is health, happiness, prosperity, and a very social new year!

Thank you for visiting in 2012!

 

Resources:

Top 10 Media Stories of 2012

Top 12 Social Media Stories of 2012

Top 12 Social Media Stories of 2012 – CIO

The Top 10 Social Media Stories that Shaped 2012

About Craig Yaris

Craig E. Yaris is the owner of EsquireTech Solutions, which helps small business get found on the social web, whether through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, he can both teach you the effective use of any social network or act as your social media manager, enabling you to reach your clients where they are and when they want to hear from you. He can teach your organization the social media best practices that can help you use the tools of today to cost-effectively increase your bottom line. EsquireTech Solutions brings the social web to your business. Visit EsquireTech Solutions or call 516-495-9107 .

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